• It wasn't the New York Giants' upset victory over the undefeated New England Patriots that caught our attention at Super Bowl XLII—it was a shot of Tom Brady's girlfriend, supermodel Gisele Bündchen, drinking red wine in her sky box. As reported by the Wall Street Journal last week, an image of Bündchen with a glass in her hand drew ire from fans and sports commentators, who recoiled at the fact that the quarterback's lady wouldn't deign to drink beer at the game. Some even insinuated that it was Bündchen and her wine that caused New England's loss. Unfiltered commends Bündchen for her choice of beverage, especially since marketing research suggests that Pats fans love to drink and read about wine. Furthermore, it seems she isn't the only one enjoying wine at sporting events. "We have significant wine lists at multiple arenas," said Bob Pascal, corporate vice president of marketing for Centerplate Inc., which caters the Super Bowl and other sports venues nationwide. Wine isn't just for the sky boxes and special seating areas, either. According to Pascal, the only thing holding arenas back from offering wine to general-seating customers is the lack of a good, non-glass container in which to serve it. Though Centerplate brass may not approve, we recommend the Wine Rack.
|Also, there's no unicorn in Robert Irvine's house, which is not built out of chocolate and rainbows.|
|The art is visually papery, with hints of ink and glass.|
• Remember the old joke? A guy asks his cab driver how to get to Carnegie Hall, and the cabbie replies, "Practice, practice, practice." Last weekend, the members of the Napa Valley Youth Symphony—who have been invited to perform at New York's Carnegie Hall this June—put on a fund-raiser at Yountville's Lincoln Center to help them get to the famous venue. The event, entitled "Serenade to Youth," featured some Napa fund-raising staples: live and silent auctions, good wines and foods from local restaurants like Celadon, La Toque and FARM at the Carneros Inn. The Youth Symphony performed, along with Napa Festival Orchestra and 16 opera stars. The live auction highlight was a barrel of 2007 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon produced by Silver Oak's Daniel Baron, which went for $22,000—a veritable bargain, as a barrel holds nearly 300 bottles, which retail for $100 each. Also a bargain: a private tasting at Harlan, including dinner, massages and two nights at Meadowood, all for $2,400, about the price you'll pay for a bottle of Harlan on a restaurant wine list.
• How do you say "shooting yourself in the foot" in French? For years now, French vignerons and wine producers, particularly the smaller ones, have been suffering financially as domestic wine consumption has steadily declined. A major reason for the decline is that young people in France don't drink wine like their parents did. So what's the wrong way for the government to help the industry out? Make it impossible to advertise on the Internet. Last week, a French appeals court sustained a ruling ordering Heineken to remove all advertising for beer from its French website. Alcohol advertising is strictly regulated by the 1991 Evin law, which regulates where ads can appear and forbids alcohol ads from implying that wine, beer or spirits leads to fun or the good life. How un-French sounding. Since neither the original law nor a 2005 revision mention the Internet, the court ruled, no alcohol ads are allowed on French websites. To think, less than a century after Prohibition, American wine consumption is rising dramatically and French authorities are treating wine like a taboo subject. Quelle dommage.