Top 5 Wines to Pair with Movies and Oscar Night – Grape Magazine

Vino plays a supporting role in some of the silver screen’s most memorable moments. We asked wine experts to tell us which scenes stayed with them long after the theatres went dark.

“Here’s looking at you kid.” Even if you haven’t seen Casablanca, you’ve likely heard that toast. And if you have seen the movie, you know tha

t not long after Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman clink glasses, the Germans come marching into Paris and change their lives forever. Here, noted wine experts recall equally vivid movie moments where wine is firmly in the frame.

David Lebovitz, chef and author of The Great Book of Chocolate

My favorite moment is in Babette’s Feast, after she makes this enormous repast, which she spends several days

preparing. At the end, when she’s completely exhausted, she brings a small glass of wine to her lips and takes a small sip. Anyone who’s worked in a restaurant or in food service knows how important that sip of wine is at the end of a hectic evening. And that gesture said it all to me.

Natalie MacLean, wine writer and author of Unquenchable

In the movie Sideways… I love when Virginia Madsen’s character, Maya, talks about the wine she and Miles are drinking and all the people who helped make it. She reflects on the care and energy they invested…how it is a piece of living history. That’s what makes wine special for me, too – its connections to history, art, culture … and so many other facets of life.

Jane A. Nickles, Certified Specialist of Wine, author and wine educator at the Texas Culinary Academy

One of my favorite wine moments is in the film French Kiss, starring Meg Ryan and Kevin Kline. Among my favorite scenes is one about a homemade wine “aroma kit” and romantic leads Kate and Luc have the following dialogue:

Luc: First you must take some wine. Can you describe it, the taste?

Kate: It’s a nice red wine.

Luc: I think you can do better.

Kate: A bold wine with a hint of sophistication and lacking in pretension.

Actually I was just talking about myself.

Anne Moses, cofounder of Patz & Hall winery, Sonoma, California

I love the moment in The Jerk when Steve Martin asks for the new wine because he doesn’t want old wine. I am afraid to say that when that movie came out in 1979, I was in high school and someone had to explain to me why the line was funny.

Mario Batali, chef, author and TV personality

My most favorite wine scene in a movie is from Babette’s Feast – the scene with the quail in [a pastry] sarcophagus. It is the most passionate wine moment ever.


More on this topic:

Celebrity winemakers and winery owners

Wines to pair with the television show 24

Wines to pair with the television show Lost




8 thoughts on “Top 5 Wines to Pair with Movies and Oscar Night – Grape Magazine

  1. In northern exposure, when they have to remake a bottle of red wine to replace a 1939 Bordeaux of maurice’s they accidentally dropped for a big gala party. That was hilarious.

  2. I always remember the scene in Arachnophobia when Jeff Daniel’s character is pinned down by his collapsing wine cellar and being attached by a killer spider. He’s forced to throw bottles of wine at it, and he reads the label on each bottle before tossing them at the spider and at one point says “not the chateau” and puts that bottle back and grabs another. hehehe.

  3. Hi Natalie,
    Love your site. Apparantly we have similar tastes in movies, since my favourite scene involving wine is the same one you mentioned from the film “Sideways”. I also get a kick out of the scene just before Miles and Jack are about to meet Maya and Stephanie for the first time at dinner, in which Miles rants that he refuses to drink any “f-ing” merlot, yet in the next scene, what do we see on the table…?
    This summer my wife and I vacationed in Italy, France and Germany, sampling too many great wines to mention here. In Tuscany we stayed in a villa on a vineyard near San Gimignano, and I was constantly reminded of the film “Under the Tuscan Sun”. It was a great holiday. Cheers!! James.

  4. Hi Natalie,
    I met you at the Royal York Hotel during a wine tasting years ago and have heeded your advice since.
    I’m flying to San Francisco next month and the wine tastings in ‘Sideways’ are very much on my mind. The last time I travelled to San Francisco, it was with my husband Mike and our daughter was 5 (now 17), so I nixed the wine tastings in wine country. Not this time, we are going to immerse ourselves!

  5. The whole movie Bottle Shock. (Yeah it’s not entirely historically accurate but hey – it wasn’t supposed to be a documentary)

    The movie A Good Year is all about a guy who inherits a winery.

    The Saint with Val Kilmer ordering Château Latour

    The Thomas Crown Affair (remake) visibly drinking a Côtes du Rhône.

    Ratatouille there is a ’52 Bordeaux in the kitchen with the wrong label so it’s a bit of an in joke.

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