Tasting Notes: The 2005 Red from Moraga Vineyards shows excellent balance of fruit, acidity and tannins. Its complex flavors are primarily of blackberry and boysenberry with some herbal and mineral notes. This finely crafted Meritage finishes full and long.
Food Pairings: Grass-fed beef, black truffle pizza
Romantic comedies aren’t what they used to be – and that’s not a bad thing. Gone are the days of the sugary-sweet stories that made actresses like Sandra Bullock and Julia Roberts household names. “Arthur Newman” is the latest example of the shift in the genre towards more plausible plots involving flawed characters, such as “Silver Linings Playbook” and “(500) Days of Summer.”
The 17th annual COL•COA French Film Festival debuted at The Director’s Guild Theater Complex in Los Angeles, where director Danièle Thompson’s “It Happened in Saint-Tropez” was presented by Axel Cruau, French Consul General in Los Angeles. Once the Champagne de L’Argentaine and food from some of LA’s popular restaurants like Church & State, K-ZO and Estérel at the Sofitel Los Angeles was enjoyed, a throng of VIPs, actors (including Robert Forster and Shannon Wilcox), directors and other moviegoers proceeded into the theater. The screening of the short “Clean” was followed by the feature presentation of “Des Gens qui s’embrassent” AKA stateside “It Happened in Saint-Tropez.” The title was inspired by the Frank Sinatra song “It Happened in Monterey” which is featured in the movie along with the crooner’s hit “My Way.” Coincidentally, the music for that song was co-written by Claude Francois, whose movie biography “My Way” was the opener at the 2012 COL•COA! After the credits rolled, writer/producer/director Edward Zwick (Defiance, The Last Samurai, The Siege) moderated a bilingual Q&A session.
Every so often an airline comes out with new features, and there is a lot brewing these days with new aircraft technology. American Airlines has reached such a milestone with the advent of light aircraft based on carbon fiber parts and other lightweight materials. For decades, the iconic airline flew with shiny aluminum skins only seen these days on vintage aircraft at shows and museums. A requirement had made it that AA needed to paint their planes. So starting today American Airlines Flight #963 from Dallas to Sao Paolo, Brazil, is the first commercial flight of the airline’s brand new 777-300ER plane to fly the new exterior scheme with silver mica paint to remind you of the earlier planes’ metallic look. A new modern logo with a stylized eagle sits next to the giant word “American” while on the tail waves a proud rendition of Old Glory.
We were there for the birth of Naissance, an aptly named first wine from winemaker Laura Díaz Muñoz’s first label of her own, Galerie. At a lunch at Providence in LA, we were among the first to taste the 2011 Sauvignon Blanc, made in a European old wine style.
The winemaker started her career at Finca Otero in La Mancha, with stops in New Zealand at Isabel Estate Vineyards in Marlborough, and the Calina Winery in Talca, Chile, before her arrival in Napa. For the past several years, she has worked with her mentor, Chris Carpenter, the highly acclaimed winemaker for Cardinale, Lokoya, Mt. Brave, and La Jota, which was represented at lunch by their 2009 Howell Mountain Cab.