Gastronomy 101, a blog about food and Los Angeles restaurants

WINE: 2004 Sofia Blanc de Blancs

This weekend I went to see Marie Antoinette, and now I find that I can't quite get out of the mood inspired by the film. The film is not for everyone, and has inspired both standing ovations and boos. It is a very stylized and understated portrait of a historical figure put into terms that a young woman of modern times can understand.

To me, the film says that no matter who you are, whether you are a college student, or a single mom, or a retail salesperson, or a lawyer, or the Queen of France, or the privileged daughter of a famous filmmaker, the moments of your life that truly define you are those that take place when you throw off your official identity and just do the things you like to do, with your friends and your family and your lovers and your pets.

But to be less English-major about it, and more practical, let me give you a list of things to be found in abundance in this film that happen to also be things that I enjoy. If you enjoy them too, then this just MIGHT be the film for you: puppies, elaborate enormous gowns, Manolo Blahniks, masquerade balls, New Order, Jason Schwartzman, gambling, gay hairdressers, The Cure, sexy Swedish soldier/counts, three-day birthday parties that end with you and your friends collapsed in a pile by a lake watching the sun rise, Asia Argento, mounds and mounds of cake, Laduree macaroons, and most of all .... pyramids upon pyramids of champagne.

So it was really no surprise that on Sunday morning, after a leisurely brunch with my very handsome and charming high school prom date and his equally handsome and charming boyfriend, I somehow found myself in the french market, perusing cheeses and charcuterie, but feeling a very distinct tug in the direction of the wine shelves.

I took a little bit of a look over at the champagne, and then walked on by. But as I did, I caught a glimpse of the wine clerk looking at me and smiling, as if to say: "I know you love our stylish, stylish sparkling wines. It's okay to buy just one. You know you want to." So I turned around and looked one last time. They ran the gamut from classic to contemporary to conveniently packaged for the girl on the go. And then my eye was caught by the bottled 2004 Sofia Blanc de Blancs all wrapped in pink cellophane with its sweet floral label, calling out to me "you too can be the Queen of France tonight, even if my grapes do come from Monterey and not Champagne."

So I bought it, and while I made up a crazy fontina-cheddar macaroni & cheese with pancetta and broccoli, J. poured me a French 75 (or perhaps in this case, a California 75?) . By the time we finished watching all our Sunday evening TV the bottle had mysteriously disappeared. How did that happen? So our couch potato selves were not magically transformed into decadent French royalty cavorting through Le Petit Trianon. But the wine was still good.


Blend: 82% Pinot Blanc, 12% Sauvignon Blanc, 6% Muscat

Alcohol: 11.5% by volume

Price: $19

Vineyard Notes: The grapes for Sofia are grown in northern Monterey County where gentle breezes from Monterey Bay contribute to the long, cool growing season. In this environment Pinot Blanc, the main component of Sofia, develops ripe flavors. Sauvignon Blanc grapes preserve the vibrant acidity of this wine, while the small addition of Muscat contributes a beautiful floral perfume and tropical fruit flavors.

Tasting Notes: The 2004 Sofia Blanc de Blancs exudes a delicate perfume of ripe apricots, tangerine, and pear. Bright flavors of summer melon and zesty lemon unfold on the palate with honeysuckle emerging on the crisp, vibrant finish.

Food Pairings: Pad Thai noodles with shrimp, warm goat cheese fondue, sushi, angel food cake with lemon glaze, apple strudel


I love your new look KT (and the feathers are a superb touch).

Okay, I REALLY want to throw a party and do one of those champage pyramids. I'm gonna need some help (somebody who drinks less coffee than I and has steadier hands). Let's do it and stream it live over our blogs.

said by Acme Instant Food at 2:34 PM Delete

Why thank you, the dress cost me a fortune! And the tall wig.

Do not count on me to do the champagne pyramid, unless it's part of a comedy routine. If it's specatular crashing you want though, I am definitely your girl.

said by KT at 2:38 PM Delete

Oh come on! We'll start a new "meme." We'll tag other bloggers to try it too. It'll be a bit of a race to see who can complete the biggest pyramid without anyone being rushed to their local emergency room with a flute stem protruding from their jugular!

said by Acme Instant Food at 2:48 PM Delete

Oooh! Can you imagine if we could get some kind of domino effect going? We could start in California and then have champagne pyramids be poured across the land. For charity. And call it "Bubbles Across America."

And we would have people film it and then we could set it to music and make an awesome video.

And a new era of peace and prosperity would dawn.

said by KT at 2:51 PM Delete

Behold the power of bloggers. You are just simply too darn cool KT!!! :)

said by Acme Instant Food at 2:53 PM Delete

This has been the most informative blog post I've read to date,,,took me forever to get thru all the facinating links.

Thai noodles, apple strudles, (pink poodles?)

wait a that champagne in a can?? and Sofia? as in privileged daughter of a famous film/wine maker? item for my christmas list

the four pack of minis (don't forget the cute lucite ice bucket) and a truckload of Laduree macaroons!!! oh yeah... that's a picnic...

said by Anonymous at 9:54 PM Delete

Yes, that is indeed champagne in a can. Tres convenient for parties, picnics, and a long day at the office.

And it is indeed named after Ms. Coppola. It also comes in a pretty bottle, and she also has a Rose.

I had to be thematic with my drinking. :)

said by KT at 10:29 PM Delete

I wanna be Queen of France too!

Err... Maybe not. But I would like to try that wine, and I like puppies...

- Chubbypanda

said by Chubbypanda at 8:37 PM Delete

I WOULD want to be Queen of France, were it not for the years of imprisonment and eventual beheading. That really puts a damper on things.

Anyway, I got the wine, and the puppy. I GUESS I can live without the Swedish count.

said by KT at 8:56 PM Delete

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