Quick Bites: Blind Sipping in Sisters | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

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Quick Bites: Blind Sipping in Sisters

"Not bad for out in the sticks." One of the lines in Bottle Shock - a new movie based on the 1976 blind tasting in


"Not bad for out in the sticks." One of the lines in Bottle Shock - a new movie based on the 1976 blind tasting in which California Chardonnays and Cabernet Sauvignons blew the cap off the notion that all the world's best wines were French - can also be said of an event held recently in Sisters. Jen's Garden's chef TR McCrystal, with the help of sommelier Jamie Reynolds, offered a private showing of the new film at Sisters Movie House, followed by a delightful five-course dinner and blind tasting of wines.

In the movie, a Chardonnay made by Napa's Chateau Montelena won the white wine section of the "Judgment of Paris" competition, stunning French wine critics. Guests at "The Judgment in Sisters" were equally stymied while attempting to identify the '06 vintage against an excellent Joseph Drouhin Meursault '05. These wines accompanied McCrystal's earthy chanterelles with butternut squash and sage risotto followed by a bourride, a fish stew uniquely flavored with a pungent fennel-orange broth.

As the reds were poured, chatter bridged the gaps between tables. "Old World, or New?"

Wine experts we were not, but we eagerly took on the challenge of tagging the '05 vintage of Stag's Leap Artemis Cabernet Sauvignon -another winner in the historic tasting - against a brilliant Chateau d'Armailhac Bordeaux. With equal relish, we plunged into our choice of Daube of Wild Boar sitting atop a crackly potato pancake or Grilled Duck Breast with silky fresh fig and goat cheese bread pudding.

My conclusion of the evening? The movie, though decidedly "Hollywood," is definitely worth seeing. And the short trek to Jen's Garden from parts about Central Oregon is a must for any food and wine enthusiast. Try the Sisters Sipper & Supper Club, Wednesdays and Thursdays through November, for a more budget-minded introduction to their wine-paired dinners. - Annissa Anderson

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