How important are wines in movies?
Updated: Mar 19
As Michelle Yeoh became the first Asian to win the Best Actress Oscar a week ago, surely many bottles of wines had been opened with many toasts raised to celebrate her achievement. And on that note, many a wine do actually feature quite prominently in movies.
Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart) runs a gin bar in “Casablanca” although he seems to be drinking mostly champagne. Ridley Scott directed “A Good Year” (starring Russell Crowe) which centers around an investment banker inheriting a vineyard and how that leads to romance and a different attitude to life. The movie “Bottle ShocK” gives a good account of the landmark tasting event “Judgement of Paris” taken place in 1976. That the major characters in Alexander Payne’s “Sideways” love Pinot Noir and hate Merlot apparently led to an immediate increase of sales in the US of the former to the detriment of the latter upon the release of the film. In the Pixar produced animated hit “Ratatouille”, the 1947 Cheval Blanc and 1961 Latour play important roles during different dinner occasions.
Of all people, James Bond certainly knows a thing or two about the indulgences in life. Other than his signature beverage (Martini cocktail - shaken and not stirred), he has been spotted enjoying a bottle of Ch. Angelus in the dining car of a train in “Casino Royale”. He also famously identifies the assassins Wint and Kidd through their ignorance of a bottle of the 1955 Mouton Rothschild. Overall though, it is probably fair to think of champagne being the favourite drink of 007. In “Casino Royale”, he declares the 1943 Taittinger Blanc de Blancs as probably the best champagne in the World. In “Moonraker”, he is seen to switch to Dom Perignon. Those from the house of Veuve Clicquot, Krug and Pommery also appear in different settings. In all the more recent Bond movies though, one will easily note Bollinger to be the prominent bubbles being consumed. Not sure it’s because Her Majesty’s secret agent has a different palate now or that being the result of the champagne house paying huge marketing dollars to EON/MGM.
Now you may know that we do carry Taittinger and Dom Perignon, in case you want to share the taste of Bond, James Bond. Other than these two, we would also recommend to you some of our latest additions:
2007 Taittinger Comtes de Champagne (WA95 at HK$1,300/bottle) – Tightly knit champagne with a pretty bouquet of lemon oil, lily pollen, dried white flowers, almond and crushed chalk, it is medium to full-bodied and with excellent balance, depth and a long, racy finish.
2013 Dom Perignon (WA95+ at HK$1,500/bottle) – We all know DomP to be an excellent champagne that never disappoints, with such harmonious blending of elegance, good complexity with intensity that is rarely overdone.
NV Andre Clouet Un Jour de 1911 Disgorged 2021 (WA95 at HK$600/bottle) – We are re-stocking this very good champagne of great value that combines ripeness, complexity, finesse and intensity on both the nose and palate, ending with a persistent and mineral finish.
2019 Donum Carneros Estate Chardonnay (WE96 at HK$620/bottle) – We have been offering the rather full-bodied Russian River Valley Chardonnay for the past two years and are now introducing its more elegant sibling from a different vineyard. This is one with the aromas of lime, grapefruit, white peach and dried flowers. The palate opens with crisp green apple and lemon, then turns richer with stone fruit, pineapple and almond. The finish is focused, with bright acidity and a hint of sea salt.
2010 Fleur Cardinale (RP95 at HK$650/bottle) – Full-bodied Bordeaux red from a great vintage that offers loads of blackberry, raspberry intermixed with cedar, vanilla and touch of spring flowers.
2013 Domaine Coquard Loison Fleurot Clos St-Denis Grand Cru (WA95 at HK$2,350/bottle) – From one of Neal Martin’s favourite Burgundy domaine, this red has a showstopping bouquet that unfolds with blackberry, red cherries, violets and a touch of vanilla. The palate is velvety and has a gentle grip, leading to a finish with energy and exquisite precision. Sublime!!!
2017 Domaine Berthaut-Gerbet Vosne-Romanee 1er Cru les Petits Monts (WA91-93 at HK$2,150/bottle) – Don’t believe in this rating as yours truly can testify this very good Burgundy red to worth at least a couple of notches higher. There is an appealing bouquet of sweet red berries, dried flowers and orange rind, framed by a touch of wood. The palate is of medium to full-bodied, with fine-grained tannins that is subtly assertive.
2015 Pierre Gelin Fixan 1er Cru Clos Napoleon Monopole (WS93 at HK$530) – Legend has it that Napoleon’s favourite red being those from Fixan, perhaps not the Burgundy sub-region with the highest esteem in the eyes of most consumers. But what about this gem from the vineyard bearing the name of the French general and statesman? This is a wine with cherry, currant, earth, iron and spice flavours framed by beefy tannins. There is ample fruit, and a lasting impression of sweetness. At such affordable price, it is certainly something to explore if only to understand the taste of the famous man.
2015 Fattoria Le Pupille Saffredi (WA96 at HK$620/bottle) – A Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot/Petit Verdot blend from Tuscany of Italy, this is a velvety red with great textural richness, length, power and one offering a bouquet of black fruit, exotic spice, tobacco and a touch of mocha and expresso as well.
Thank you for reading. Please feel free to go to our website www.vinopolis.com.hk to browse the full wine list. Purchases can be made through the website or by sending us an e-mail or simply WhatsApp 9195-7383.