Movie & Wine Pairing



Elqui River Chardonnay 2015
Elqui Valley, Chile

Giant (1956)

Rock Hudson and James Dean have the pioneering spirit to match this winemaker’s captivating Chardonnay in George Stevens’ film, Giant. Join them under big Texas skies for an epic family drama that’s engaging in its social consciousness. Perhaps it’s the presence of the beautiful Elizabeth Taylor that makes such an ideal pairing for a wine of delicate and bright character.


"Aldo Olivier’s Viña Falernia is a pioneering, maverick winery, single-handedly responsible for putting Elqui on Chile’s finewine map" (Peter Richards, Wines of Chile). High praise indeed – almost as high as Aldo’s remote Elqui Valley vineyards, which are some of the world’s tallest at 6,000 feet. The fruit for this Chardonnay exclusive was handpicked from the Titon vineyard in the coolest sector of the Elqui Valley; four months in oak adds a delicate, spicy finesse to the vibrant tropical fruit flavor.


Aldo Olivier (left) emigrated from Italy to Chile in 1951. After farming vegetables for years, he began to grow grapes for the production of pisco (a classic South American spirit). That all changed in 1995 when Aldo’s winemaking cousin from the motherland, Giorgio Flessati (below, right), came for a visit. Giorgio immediately recognized Chile’s potential as a world-class wine region and convinced Aldo to switch to winemaking – golds, trophies and major acclaim have followed him ever since.


Drive seven hours north of Santiago, and you'll reach the remote Elqui Valley, on the edge of the Atacama Desert. The air in this hot, dry region is some of the world's clearest (perfect for stargazing), and year-round sun and the cooling influence of the Humboldt Current (from the Pacific) are perfect for vines. "It’s like northern Italy," says Giorgio, "in that every 5 kilometers there are different conditions."


If you’ve got company coming over, this is the crowd-pleasing bottle to reach for. Planning on seafood? Alta Tierra is great with lobster, pan-seared scallops or white clam pizza (a nod to Aldo’s roots). Or go traditional Chilean with a cazuela (stew) of corn, pumpkin, pork and spices. It also hits the spot with crisp salads and a bevy of appetizers, like creamy dips and spreads.

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