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Pan's Labyrinth & Spanish Tempranillo

This pairing comes at the request of Justin in San Francisco.

"Everything Everywhere All at Once" wasn't the first movie to use its supernatural elements as a metaphor for its main character's internal life. The earliest example that I can think of is "The Wizard of Oz," and "Pan's Labyrinth" did it too.

The Movie

"Pan's Labyrinth" is a dark fantasy directed by Guillermo del Toro, set in the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War. A young girl named Ofelia (Ivana Baquero) tries to escape the harsh reality of post-war Spain into fantastical, mythical, and likely-imagined world. There, she encounters the enigmatic faun Pan (Doug Jones), who DEFINITELY isn't a sleep paralysis demon, promise... He tells Ofelia that she is the reincarnation of a long-lost princess and tasks her with a quest to reclaim her throne. Visually stunning, emotionally powerful, and dream-like, "Pan's Labyrinth" explores themes of innocence, bravery, and escapism.

The Wine

The Ribera del Duero region in northern Spain is known for producing high-quality, bold wines predominantly from the Tempranillo grape.

Upon pouring, the Valderiz Ribera del Duero exhibits a deep, dark garnet hue, hinting at the wine's intensity and concentration. The nose offers an enticing bouquet of ripe black fruits such as blackberry and black cherry, complemented by hints of licorice, leather, and tobacco, as well as notes of vanilla and toasty oak from aging in barrels. On the palate, this full-bodied wine presents a harmonious balance of rich fruit flavors, firm tannins, and well-integrated acidity. Layers of dark fruit are interwoven with nuances of spice, mocha, and a subtle earthiness, culminating in a long, satisfying finish.

Why They Go Together

The richness of the Valderiz Ribera del Duero matches the vividness and detail of Ofelia's imagined world. Its dark color and flavors reflects the grim reality of post-War Spain. Finally, the wine's many layers compliment how Ofelia alternates between reality and fantasy.

By Eddie Beeby

What wine would you pair with Pan's Labyrinth?

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