In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the 1976 Judgment of Paris wine tasting, Napa Valley wineries, restaurants and hotels will celebrate the blind tasting that revolutionized the world’s opinion of California, and especially Napa Valley wines.
The Paris Wine Tasting of 1976, or the Judgment of Paris, was a wine competition organized in Paris on May 24, 1976 by Steven Spurrier, a British wine merchant. French judges carried out two blind tasting comparisons; one of top-quality Chardonnays and another of red wines (Bordeaux wines from France and Cabernet Sauvignon wines from California).
California Chardonnays represented in the tasting included: Chateau Montelena, 1973; Chalone Vineyard, 1974; Spring Mountain Vineyard, 1973; Freemark Abbey Winery, 1972; Veedercrest Vineyards, 1972; and David Bruce Winery, 1973.
The California Cabernet Sauvignons represented in the tasting included: Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, 1973; Clos Du Val Winery, 1972; Ridge Vineyards, Monte Bello, 1972; Heitz Wine Cellars, Martha’s Vineyard, 1970; Mayacamas Vineyards, 1971; and Freemark Abbey Winery, 1969.
The first place winner was Chateau Montelena Chardonnay, 1973 and Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars for its Cabernet Sauvignon.
Below are highlights of the Napa Valley celebrations.
Flavor! Napa Valley kicks off the 40th anniversary at Silverado Resort & Spa in Napa with the Celebration of the Judgment of Paris Dinner, Thursday, March 17, 2016, 6 – 10 p.m. Participating chefs include Matthew Accarrino, SPQR (San Francisco); Bradley Ogden, Lark Creek Restaurant Group; Justin Yu, Hawker Fare (Oakland); and Larry Forgione (Culinary Institute of America). Tickets are $295 per person. For a complete description of all Flavor! Napa Valley events, including dates, times, pricing and ticket information, visit Flavor! Napa Valley. Media contact: Angela Jackson, firstname.lastname@example.org
Chateau Montelena Winery in Calistoga is celebrating 40 years since it won the Judgment of Paris with tastings across the country in partnership with Stag's Leap Wine Cellars, including open houses at the wineries on the anniversary date, May 24, 2016. Media contact: Stephen Schmitz: email@example.com, 415-346-2929.
The Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa will host a food and wine tasting event May 22-29, 2016 which includes a three-course menu for $52 per person and a selection of wine pairing suggestions from Napa Valley and France. Wine pairings will be priced per glass. Media contact: Andrew Bradley, firstname.lastname@example.org, 707.251.1941, www.Meritage Resort.com
Angele Restaurant in Napa will pair dishes with wine from Mayacamas Vineyards during the entire month of May 2016. Media contact: Kelly Mitchell-Jacks, Kelly@angelerestaurant.com, 707.252.8115; www.angelerestaurant.com
Auberge du Soleil in Rutherford features Chateau Montelena Winery proprietor Judy Barrett, president Bo Barrett and winemaker Matt Crafton on Friday, March 11, 2016 with a signature five-course tasting menu by Executive Chef Robert Curry, paired with a selection of the winery’s award-winning white and red varietals. The evening with the Barrett family will showcase the famed wines and include stories surrounding the 1976 Judgment of Paris. The dinner is limited to 50 guests and is $195 per person. Media contact: Rachel Farnham, email@example.com, 310.586.7109.
The Wine Spectator Greystone Restaurant at the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) at Greystone in St. Helena, will serve a four-course tasting menu inspired by French and American cuisines Tuesday, May 24, 2016. The weekly harvest will influence the menu and will be paired with two wines from the best regions of France and California. Guests will determine which wine pairs best with each course. Seating is farm-style and communal with three seating times at 5:30 p.m., 6 p.m., and 8 p.m. The dinner is $95 per person, inclusive of wine. Media contact: Anne Girvin, firstname.lastname@example.org, 707.967.2322; www.ciachef.edu
Harvest Table at the Harvest Inn in St. Helena will pair one French wine and one California wine with the starter and entrée of their Napa Neighbor three-course menu, which is $36 per person, for and additional $20 per person. Wine pairings will include Clos du Val; Heitz (Martha’s Vineyard); Freemark Abbey; and more. The Harvest Inn will also feature a Judgment of Paris overnight package to include a private blind wine tasting tutorial with the restaurant’s sommelier; where guests will have the opportunity to taste both French and California wines as well as learn more about the history of the Judgment of Paris. The hotel package is available May 22 – 29, 2016 and midweek rates start at $479 per night and $639 for weekend. Media contact: Christa Weaving, email@example.com
For additional ideas on where to stay and what to see and do in the Napa Valley, visit www.visitnapavalley.com