May 24th marked the anniversary of the Judgement of Paris, the famous blind taste test in France the pitted California wines against French wines. On this fateful day in 1976, two California wines, the 1973 chardonnay from Chateau Montelena and the 1973 cabernet sauvignon from Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, won top honors.
The results were a shock to the French judges, and many others. But, it put California wine (and the U.S.) on the map as a serious contender in the wine scene.
So, what better way to celebrate this notable day, than to watch the movie, Bottle Shock (a 2009 movie based on the Judgement of Paris) and drink some California wine.
I opted for a bottle of 2012 Round Pond Estate Sauvignon Blanc (I didn’t have a bottle of Chateau Montelena or Stag’s Leap readily available) and settled in to watch the movie.
Round Pond Estate is located in the Rutherford region of Napa Valley. This area, known as the Rutherford Bench, has soils that are optimal for growing grapes. The river sediment, coupled with the Northern California weather give the grapes a distinct, earthy flavor known as the “Rutherford Dust.”
Bottle Shock is an entertaining and fun. It highlights Steven Spurrier’s (the creator of the Paris tasting) trip to the California wineries and his visit from Chateau Montelena. The movie then turns its focus on Chateau Montelena and their journey to participating in the tasting. The movie gets the name “Bottle Shock” from when the Chardonnay turns brown in the bottle temporarily before clearing. Oh, and there is a bit of a romance in there too…
The flavorful and crisp wine (and my potato chips) was the perfect pairing for this movie. I recommend both the Round Pond Sauvignon Blanc and Bottle Shock – paired together or each on their own. The Sauvignon Blanc is refreshing and would also make a great summer afternoon wine, when you need a little cooling off.
Round Pond Estate
Rutherford Napa Valley
The wine is very light yellow, almost clear in color. It has a light, sweet nose, reminding me of honeydew melon with hints of lemon. The wine tastes of citrus and spice, with hints of lemon, black pepper and green apples. It is light and refreshing and would pair well with salads or fish.