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Dune & Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Since there's no way I'll ever get to watch Jodorowky's "Dune," I guess I'll have to settle for Denis Villeneuve's masterpiece.

This sci-fi epic calls for a Châteauneuf-du-Pape from France's Rhone Valley, like that of Pierre Henri Morel.

The Story

Based on the classic 1965 novel by Frank Herbert and set in the distant future, "Dune" tells the story of the desert planet of Arrakis. The world is the universe's one and only source of the valuable spice melange, which grants heightened mental abilities, making interstellar navigation possible. New to the planet is Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet), the son of Duke Leto Atreides (Oscar Isaac) and Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson). Their family is given control of Arrakis, thrusting them into a dangerous and complex web of political intrigue.

"Dune" is a feast for the senses. The cinematography, visual effects, sound mix, and everything in between create an immersive and visually striking world that fully realizes the grandeur and vastness of the Dune universe. The cast turns in a stellar performance, particularly Timothée Chalamet's hair - it is as wild as it is majestic.

The film's pacing is slow. Really, really slow. There are good reasons for this and nobody familiar with Villeneuve's work should be surprised. The pace allows for a more faithful adaptation of the source material and provides ample time for world-building and character development. That said, Villeneuve and the editing team probably could have trimmed a lot more and still achieve what they intended.

Also, don't expect an ending. The movie doesn't conclude, it doesn't even leave you on a cliffhanger, it just stops. Don't worry, there'll be a resolution in the next movie due later this year, it's fine.

The Wine

The Pierre Henri Morel Châteauneuf-du-Pape is a highly regarded red wine produced in the famous Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation in France's Southern Rhône Valley. The appellation is known for its diverse terroir, warm climate, and its ability to use up to 13 different grape varieties in the blend, with Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre being the most prominent.

The Pierre Henri Morel Châteauneuf-du-Pape is crafted with a focus on quality and respect for the region's traditions. The wine is typically Grenache-dominant, with Syrah, Mourvèdre, and other permitted varieties contributing to its complexity and depth.

The nose is greeted with an enticing bouquet of ripe black fruits, such as blackberries, black cherries, and plums, alongside notes of garrigue, lavender, and spicy undertones. Depending on the vintage and winemaking techniques, you may also detect hints of leather, licorice, and earthy minerality.

On the palate, the Pierre Henri Morel Châteauneuf-du-Pape is full-bodied and richly textured, with well-integrated tannins and balanced acidity. The wine's dark fruit flavors are accompanied by layers of spice, herbs, and a touch of oak, creating a harmonious and complex profile. The finish is long and persistent, leaving a lasting impression of the wine's depth and character.

Why They Pair Well

This wine is full-bodied with powerful flavors and a robust structure, mirroring the epic scale and scope of the story in "Dune." Pierre Henri Morel Chateauneuf du Pape showcases the unique terroir of the region, with its rocky, sun-baked soils, as reminiscent of the harsh, desert planet of Arrakis as any decent wine region can be. Finally, the Pierre Henri Morel estate is a relative newcomer to the storied Rhône Valley, just as the Atreides family is the newest entry in Arrakis' rich history.

What wine would you pair with "Dune?"

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