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What could be more fun than choosing wine based on your favorite actors and actresses? Karen MacNeil offers these actor/actress pairings with the grape varietals that best describe them.:
Julia Roberts : Riesling
With her undeniable charisma and 100 megawatt smile, Julia Roberts is as sweetly irresistible and as unthreatening as a luscious large harvest Riesling. Like all great dessert wines, late harvest Rieslings are both elegant and forceful at the same time-just like Roberts.
Ellen Burstyn : Pinot Noir
Dramatic, earthy, and passionate, Ellen Burstyn is like a fine Pinot Noir. And like a Pinot Noir, Burstyn seems to take on more nuances, even more sensuality, the older she gets.
With her curvy womanly body, enigmatic smile, and almost mysterious aura of femininity, Juliette Binoche is like an elegant yet lush Viognier. Richly supple and full of intriguing flavors, Viognier can be powerful and yet refined at the same time-like Binoche.
Laura Linney : Grenache
Humble and easy going on the one hand, but full of emotional depth and determination on the other, Linney is like Grenache, the quiet unsung hero of grapes that gives so many Rhone-style wines in California and Rhone wines in France their complexity and core of richness.
Joan Allen : Sparkling Wine
Tall, sleek, complex, and sophisticated, Joan Allen is like an elegant sparkling wine. And like a great sparkling wine, she manages to be powerful and captivating while maintaining her elegance.
Russell Crowe : Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc Blend
Complex to the point of moodiness, turbulent, and unrelentingly intense, Russell Crowe is like a great Bordeaux-style blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc. Such wines are all about perfection and mastery - not unlike Crowe himself.
Geoffery Rush : Gewurztraminer
Eccentric, compelling, passionate, and a man whose acting roles sometimes verge on the insane, Geoffrey Rush has to be Gewurztraminer, which is zany in its own right, and irresistible because of it.
Tom Hanks : Merlot
Is it possible not to be taken in by Hanks' spell? The man can be funny or tragic, easygoing or serious, passionate or aloof. In short, Hanks is the kind of everyman with whom all of us are very comfortable. He is, in other words, like Merlot-genuine and satisfying to be around.
Javier Bardem : Syrah
With his manliness, sexiness, and lurking kind of passion, he is like Syrah, which has a primordial sexiness of its own. Dark and earthy, Syrah's intensity mirrors Bardem's own.
Ed Harris : Cabernet Sauvignon
Strong, driven, ambitious, complex, and charismatic, Harris exudes internal power and a kind of fierceness. He's a classic Cabernet Sauvignon, the most complex, powerful, ageworthy, and expensive of all red grapes.
Karen MacNeil is one of America's leading writers and consultants in the
fields of wine and food. In addition to contributing to national
magazines and newspapers, and WineAnswers, Karen conducts private and corporate wine
seminars and is currently chairman of the Culinary Institute of
America's wine department. She is the author of the wine primer,
The Wine Bible, published by Workman Publishing.