The 68th Cannes Film Festival, which kicks of Thursday, May 13, welcomes back Baron Philippe de Rothschild’s Mouton Cadet as the official wine supplier. The brand will toast attendees with the 2014 limited-edition rosé at the exclusive Mouton Cadet Wine Bar on the Palais des Festival rooftop. Can’t attend the star-studded festivities? The cinema-themed bottling—a Bordeaux blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon—will be sold throughout New York City and the Hamptons for $12.99.
According to Decanter, The University of Burgundy in Dijon is launching a free wine-education course in English and French to help wine lovers learn about the storied region’s terroir and winemaking. The Open Wine University program, which launches May 21, 2015, is part of a multilingual digital learning partnership with other major European universities.,The five-week course will feature content curated by the teaching staff of the Jules Guyot Wine and Vine Institute, and subjects will include tasting techniques, terroir, wine history and viticulture, presented through a series of online seminars, video blogs and interactive tastings.
On Monday, May 4, the James Beard Foundation announced the winners of the food world’s top prize. Nearly 2,000 guests attended the 25th anniversary gala, hosted at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, with a reception overseen by Chicago restaurant luminaries and gala co-chairs Grant Achatz, Rick Bayless and Paul Kahan. Big winners of the night included Michael Anthony of New York City’s Gramercy Tavern for Outstanding Chef; Blue Hill at Stone Barns of Pocantico Hills, New York, for Outstanding Restaurant; and Jessica Largey of Manresa in Los Gatos, California, won Rising New Chef. Find more winners at the James Beard Foundation Web site.
On May 5, popular restaurant review blog The Infatuation launched a beta version of its new Text Rex service in New York City. A personal restaurant recommendation service, Text Rex will aim to provide dining suggestions from real people. The service is only currently available in New York, but will soon be rolling out in San Francisco, Chicago and Los Angeles.
In the Trade
In a report highlighting the rising cost of going out in the United States, Bloomberg Business attributed the trend to Americans’ increasingly expensive tastes, not restaurant and bar price hikes. Citing data gathered from the drink sales of 6,000 bars and restaurants by research firm GuestMetrics, the report found that consumers go out less often and order fewer drinks, but order more craft cocktails and beers. Wines by-the-glass costing more than $10 make up 48 percent of wine sold, while craft beer accounts for 31 percent of all beer sales. Though sales of spirit drinks costing more than $12 only account for 3 percent of volume sold at establishments, the category’s market share is 15 percent larger than in 2013.
To celebrate its 20th vintage anniversary, Luce della Vite—started as a partnership between Robert Mondavi and Vittorio Frescobaldi in Montalcino, Italy—hosted a special classic dance performance of the late Merce Cunningham’s RainForest at New York City’s Baryshnikov Arts Center (BAC). With sets designed by Andy Warhol and music by David Tudor, the Stephen Petronio Company performed the work in the Jerome Robbins Theater, followed by a reception introducing Luce’s 2012 vintage. To further celebrate its 20-year history and its support of the BAC, Luce will hold a wine auction at Christie’s New York on June 18. Auction lots will include a 20-year retrospective of Luce wines, large-format bottles and a VIP tasting, with 100 percent of the proceeds benefiting the BAC and its promotion of artists around the world.
The Society of Wine Educators (SWE) 39th Annual Conference will be held in New Orleans, on August 12–14. This year, SWE will offer 60 sessions presented by 67 leaders from the beverage industry, covering well-known regions like the U.S., France and Italy, but also emerging areas such as the Republic of Georgia, Turkey, Slovenia and China. Other session highlights include, “The Secret Life of Pinot Noir” and “Sherry: A Perfect Food Wine,” while local chefs will also host sessions focused on New Orleans cuisine.
On the Scene
The life of an editor can be hard work. Just ask Digital Editorial Manager Marina Vataj, who attended a luxurious wine tasting event at New York City’s Gramercy Tavern with Michael Scholz, winemaker of Napa’s St. Supéry Estate Vineyards & Winery and Emma Swain the company’s CEO. Over a five-course lunch, Vataj enjoyed a selection of the brand’s collection, including the 2013 Dollarhide Estate Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, the 2012 Estate Élu and the 2012 Rutherford Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, plus a special pour of the 1997 Dollarhide Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon.
In our continuing partnership with America’s best art film houses, Contributing Editor Virginie Boone attended a special screening of Bottleshock at the Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center. Read more about our wine and film partnership >>>
Kyle MacLachlan, star of Twin Peaks and co-owner of Pursued by Bear winery, took over Wine Enthusiast’s Instagram account last week, offering an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at his life in the vineyard and at his winery. If you missed it, you must check it out.
Let the blending trials begin! These glasses represent samples taken from the barrels. Each glass is a different varietal – cabernet, merlot, syrah – and also from a different vineyard. I source my grapes from about 5 different vineyards. They don’t all make the cut! – @kyle_maclachlan A photo posted by @wineenthusiast on