Sonoma County Coppola Wines to be Served at 90th Academy Awards
Francis Ford Coppola Winery’s Sonoma County wines are in the spotlight once again at the 90th Annual Academy Awards and Governors Ball on Sunday, March 4, 2018.
Director Coppola has taken home six Academy Awards, including the Irving G. Thalberg lifetime achievement award from the Oscars, the iconic awards event held annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Now, he brings them the wine.
Last year the famed film auteur and Sonoma County winery owner secured an exclusive three-year deal to supply wines to the Academy’s events. This year the winery was also the exclusive wine sponsor at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.
The wines on offer at the Oscars include special editions of Coppola’s Director’s Cut Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay made from Sonoma County grapes. Sonoma County is recognized worldwide for its high quality of both cool-climate varietals like Pinot Noir from coastal areas and Cabernet Sauvignon from the warmer interior, as well as the natural beauty of the rugged coast and mountains surrounding wine country.
Coppola Winery’s “Director’s Cut” series of wines provide particular delight for lovers of cinema history: each label spirals around the bottle in a zoetrope strip.
Coppola collects vintage zoetropes, which are an early type of motion picture that worked by spinning strips of illustrated paper. Coppola, who has overcome many “impossibilities” to make such films as Apocalypse Now, had a small company custom-design a machine to make the unique label.
The scenes depicted on the labels for the upcoming Oscars range from whimsy to horror show. In one, an acrobat appears to hand-walk over wine bottles, while balancing a cat on his knees. In another, a devil meets a butcher’s cleaver.
The winery works with the Academy to choose blends that they feel members and guests will enjoy, and also reflect the prestige of the awards ceremony. Last year’s lineup included a classic, apple cobbler-scented Chardonnay, ideal for a cocktail reception, alongside a beefy red with soft tannins. A few of Coppola’s other wines will also be poured — such as his premier red blend, Archimedes, and his Reserve Pinot Noir.
During last year’s Oscars events, some 10,000 glasses and 2,200 bottles were poured. Picture this: that’s almost 20 barrels of wine! But the wines will still available at the winery in Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley, with sweeping views of the valley’s vineyards. The Russian River flows through the Alexander Valley appellation on its way to the Russian River Valley appellation, a few klicks to the south.
Everything has a story at Coppola’s Sonoma County winery, which even the director has called a “wine wonderland.” It’s part film memorabilia museum, displaying Vito Corleone’s desk from the Godfather, the car from Tucker, and other memorable items from Coppola’s film career; part tasting room (with a reserve room upstairs for serious-minded sippers); and part gift shop, with selections picked out or approved by the auteur himself.
There’s also a restaurant, Rustic, which features international and Italian cuisine — yes, including pizza — and the centerpiece is an Argentine-inspired grill), as well as a summer pool party spot (guests may reserve cabines that line the pool).
Of course, if you prefer to watch the Oscars from home with sparkling wine and popcorn close at hand, try the winery’s Sofia Blanc de Blancs.
300 Via Archimedes, Geyserville, 707-857-1400. Open daily, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.