5 Celebrity Wines That Are Actually Worth a Taste
Being a multi-hyphenate in Hollywood is pretty much a requirement: actor-singer, singer-model, model-humanitarian. One of the newest ventures celebs of all stripes are pursuing these days? Booze. And with everyone from reality stars to A-listers angling to release their own wine brands, vino connoisseurs are growing skeptical.
That's not to say there aren't gems to be found amid a sea of Lil Jon vintages. Here, tried-and-true sommeliers and wine experts advocate for the five best celebrity-owned labels.
Drew Barrymore's 2015 Barrymore by Carmel Road Pinot Grigio
When Barrymore, a fan of crisp, fruity whites, got into the wine business in 2011, she hoped to be taken seriously in the industry. Today, it seems she has succeeded; Robbi Jo Oliver, senior director of wine and spirits at Mastro's Steakhouse in New York, quite liked the Pinot Grigio she tasted. "The 2015 has aromas of tropical fruits, citrus and minerality, which lends to a beautiful palate full of melon and bright acidity," she says, adding, "the wine pairs lovely with our seafood towers, crisp salads and composed sushi dishes."
Sting's 2008 Sister Moon Tenuta Il Palagio
"Sister Moon," a 2008 blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, and named for Sting's hit song, was listed among the top picks by Wine Spectator, and Gianfranco Sorrentino, owner of Italian restaurant The Leopard at des Artistes in NYC, can see why. "There's a black peppery taste that is in a full-bodied wine with soft tannins," he says. "At the second sip, I also found notes of licorice and frutti di bosco"—as in, mixed berries.
Dave Matthews's 2014 The Dreaming Tree Crush Red Blend
Dave Matthews collaborated with award-winning Sonoma County winemaker Sean McKenzie to create his line of California wines. What do the experts think of the musician's red blend? "Dark ruby to the eye, this Merlot-driven blend has sweet red berry aromas," says, Stefani Jackenthal, owner of NTS Wine Tasting, a New York–based wine event planning company. "Ripe raspberry, stewed strawberry and woody caramel meld with velvety tannins, making it an easy sipper. It's ready for ketchupy burgers, grilled eggplant or your favorite pizza."
Bethenny Frankel's 2015 Skinnygirl Pinot Grigio
The reality star became famous—not to mention a millionaire many times over—for her diet-conscious Skinnygirl brand. But Jackenthal doesn't dismiss Frankel's 2015 Pinot Grigio, which "has more heft than expected," she says. "With a slight green hue, its medium body offers roast pear, tropical fruit, lime zest and surprising sweet vanilla on the finish. Pair it with crunchy green things, baked cod and grilled chicken."
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's Miraval Côtes de Provence Rosé
Brad and Angie may have given up their wine business after their split last year, but not without leaving their mark with a well-regarded rosé. "Miraval Côtes de Provence Rosé is bright and floral with refreshing acidity and red fruit notes," Sara Lehman, an NYC-based sommelier and wine educator, says. "This wine is very expressive of the Provence terroir, with noticeable mineral notes, citrus and a touch of salinity. Overall, it's a nice dry wine with a long-lasting finish."
Jordi Lippe-McGraw is a freelance writer covering travel, food and wellness, and is also an avid truffle lover. Follow her on Instagram at @welltraveler.
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