A few months ago I viewed a trailer for a new wine movie, Bottle Shock. It looked like a very interesting dramedy and since it's release in August, the reviews have been good, especially in regard to Alan Rickman's performance. The movie is loosely based on the happenings surrounding a blind tasting in Paris involving both French and American wines in 1976. The American wines heavily beat the French and rendered instant global credibility. In Napa Valley, however, they are not ready to rend credibility to these storymakers. Many of the growers and winemakers in the valley have been around long enough to know the true story. They are boycotting the movie due to it missing one of Napa's most valuable and influential men- Miljenko "Mike" Grgich. He is an 85 year old Croatian American and was the winemaker of the 1973 vintage Chateau Montelena Chardonnay that made history and won the Judgement of Paris white wine category. He later started his own winery with Austin Hills (of Hills Bros. coffee) and named it Grgich Hills. This is a huge slap in the face to almost all Napa citizens who revere Mike Grgich and will be staying in the valley to produce wines for us all to enjoy- unlike the Barretts (current owners of Montelena). They are selling to Michel Reybier of Cos d'Estournel. It seems as though Bottle Shock is their last swipe at Grgich and they will be out of the biz. Look for the new movie- Judgement of Paris, to give a more accurate portrayal.
Windy City Wine Guy | Michael Bottigliero
Michael Bottigliero, a Chicago sommelier here to fit your wine needs including corporate events, training, in home wine tastings, bachelorette parties, beverage menu creation and wine cellar management.