Media Mogul Wine Tasting

Which media maven produces the finest wine?

For many entertainment bigwigs, their wine operation is every bit as crucial as the Bentley and beach house. With the holidays upon us, we put several media players’ wines to the test. After their camps told us which of their creations go best with the traditional holiday poultry feast, we conducted a blind tasting at New York restaurant Cibo. Our three panelists were Bruce Yung, sommelier at Manhattan hotspot davidburke & donatella; Cibo maitre d’ James Latz; and, representing the novice quaffer, B&C Deputy Editor Michael Malone. 6 The inaugural Flash! B&C Media Mogul Wine title goes to…Richard Parsons! The Time Warner chief’s Il Palazzone took top honors, averaging 4 out of a maximum 5 points from our judges. Salut!

Amy Carney, EVP, sales and operations Sony Pictures Television

Richard Parsons, Chairman/CEO Time Warner

Lorraine Bracco, Actress, The Sopranos

Carolyn Chambers, CEO, Chambers Cable (Oregon)

Francis Ford Coppola, Founder American Zoetrope


Green Springs in Virgina

Tenuta II Palazzone in Tuscany

HQ in New Hampshire, imports from vineyards in Italy

Panther Creek in Oregon

Rubicon Estate in Napa Valley

How it started

Looking for a lifestyle change

Wife told him to find a hobby

Fell for wine while living in France

A friend pestered her to invest

A not to his Italian heritage

Wine for review and comments

CABERNET SAUVIGNONBRUCE: I can smell the money. Better oak, subtle nuances, blueberries, blackberries. 2JAMES: I don’t get a lot on the nose, and very brief on the palate. 2MIKE: Flat. If this were expensive, I’d feel I didn’t get my money’s worth. 2

IL PALAZZONEBRUCE: Great integrity on the nose. Like a muscled-up car you can hear coming down the street. 4 JAMES: Symphonic, lots of elements at play. A main-course wine. 4MIKE: Peppery, with a lot of spice and favorable flavor. 4

PINOT GRIGIOBRUCE: It’s corked.JAMES: Yup, it’s corked.MIKE: If you say so. (Our bottle, described on Bracco’s Website as “intense and fruity on the nose,” unfortunately arrived spoiled.)

PINOT NOIRBRUCE: Pepper on the nose, and a little ginger. Loud, like someone shouting in your ear. 2JAMES: A one-trick wine, won’t take a dish to new heights. 3MIKE: Full-bodied, very satisfying, hefty on the tongue. 4

EDIZIONE PENNINOBRUCE: Cherry and strawberry notes. Juicy, makes the mouth water. 3JAMES: A really pleasant medium- to full-bodied red. Crushed-violet perfume to it. 4MIKE: Not bold; makes me think of chianti bottles in wicker baskets. 3