Two things that finance professional Gregory Elias likes to do in his free time are watch movies and drink fine wines. This is why Bottle Shock happens to be a movie that he really enjoys. Elias finds this movie, which is based on real life events, inspiring and heart warming. He knows that even people who do not consider themselves to be a wine lover can find merit in this underdog tale.

Set in Paris and Cali in the mid-1970s, Bottle Shock retells the events that led to Napa Valley making a name for itself on the wine scene. Until that point, France was the leading wine producer in the world. As depicted in the film, wine expert and Sommelier, Steven Spurrier is concerned about his small wine shop which is located in Paris. In an effort to create more business for his shop, he creates a wine tasting event. Wanting to get as much publicity as possible, he travels to the region of California known as Napa Valley. At the time, the valley was just starting to produce wine and had not earned a reputation.

Spurrier convinces a local vintner, Jim Barrett, to enter some of his wine into the blind tasting competition. At first, Barrett does not want to take part in the competition, as he fears it is all a ploy to belittle the small winemakers outside of France. After some turmoil and a few laughs, Barrett is convinced to enter his Chateau Montelena into the tasting. Members of the Barrett family travel to France for the blind tasting. Of course, the locals at the competition are in agreement that France produces the finest wines, and they do not expect to see any other winners from other areas. Gregory Elias’s favorite part of the movie is when the California wine wins the taste test.

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