I’m excited about today’s post. A few years ago, I did a piece called “Sip & Chill: The Netflix Wine Guide” where I paired wine with different Netflix & Chill scenarios. I had a lot of fun putting that one together. Well, it’s time for another edition of “Sip & Chill.” Val/Gal-entine’s Day is this weekend and I’m not sure if you have any plans to go out considering things are still touch and go with COVID, but an activity that never gets old is having a movie night at the house! These movie-streaming platforms have been so clutch during this quarantine time. I don’t know about you, but I’m a hopeless romantic and live for a good (REAL) love story. I added “real” because love for me isn’t the fairy tale that Disney fed us or the classic happily ever after “boy meets girl. boy likes girl. boy marries girl.” I’m talking about a story that captures the ups and downs of relationships. In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I’m putting together a list of my favorite love stories. I purposely didn’t call these rom-coms because they all don’t fall into that category. Instead, you’ll see that each of these movies captures the many facets of love. Whether you’re in a relationship or single, there’s something for everyone. And, you know that everything that I do has to have a wine component, so I’m pairing each movie with a wine. You’ll be able to see the connection between the movie and the wine selection through its label….at least I hope so….lol. Here are seven of my favorite love stories that you can watch with your girls or your boo thang this holiday weekend.
Movie: Seriously Single (2020)
Why It’s a Favorite? I obsessed with the South African films and TV series on Netflix. They’re so good! If you’ve watched Blood & Water or How to Ruin Christmas, then you already know what I’m talking about. I recently watched Seriously Single over the holidays and loved it. The movie follows this woman who is obsessed with the idea of love and being in a relationship. Through this journey she learns that the best love is self-love. Seriously Single is extremely funny and relatable, especially if you’re in your 20’s or 30’s.
Wine Pairing: Red Handed – Happy Singles Moscato (Total Wine, $10)
This Red-Handed Singles Moscato is the perfect pairing for Seriously Single. No need to read between the lines. The label says it all. It’s a celebration of being single, which this Netflix South African film is all about. A lot of women enjoy sweet wine, which I don’t really cover, so go ahead and add this one to your list if that’s your thing. This moscato is light-bodied with white floral and grapefruit flavors.
Movie: She’s Gotta Have It (2017)
Why It’s a Favorite? My Black card will probably be revoked a couple of times by the time we get to the end of this post, but I never saw the original She’s Gotta Have It that was released in 1986. I was a baby, so that should get me some sort of pass, right?! Anyways, I really enjoyed the new version. The main character Nola Darling is an artist, so art is a huge focus point of the series along with the soundtrack which helps guide the story. But, as immature as Nola is I love that she marches to the beat of her own drum. She does what she wants to do, which includes openly dating three men at the same time in the first season of the series. She ultimately chooses to focus on herself and the thing (her art) that drives her passions. That’s a type of love that speaks volumes.
Wine Pairing: 2019 Sun Goddess Sauvignon Blanc (Total Wine, $20)
I’m pairing Mary J. Blige’s Sun Goddess Sauvignon Blanc, which I reviewed on the blog last year, with She’s Gotta Have It. When I think of a sun goddess, I think of someone who exudes light and good energy. Nola’s free spirit encompasses all of that. Even the art on the label reminds me of Nola. This is a dry, medium-bodied white wine. I have to say that the flavors were very on point. It is very crisp and refreshing, with tropical fruit notes and a touch of earthiness that gives it a little bit of grit on the finish.
Movie: Malcolm & Marie (2021)
Why It’s a Favorite? I could write a whole essay on why this film is brilliant, from the cinematography to the actors to the script. Critics hated this Netflix film, but I would highly have to disagree. The previews tried to warn you. It gives the disclaimer that this is not a love story, but a story about love. And, love is complicated. I love that this film highlights the toxicity of relationships. Too often, we see boy meets girl, they fall in love, and the rest is blissful history. That isn’t always the case. We need to see the complicated sides of relationships more often and what happens between that initial meeting and falling in love. Yes, this movie focused on an argument (that reminded me of a boxing match), but what ultimately kept my attention was the fact that it shows the ugly side of love, which people experience all the time. Love is not perfect and I wish we saw more of that displayed in Hollywood.
P.S. Can I just say that John David Washington (Denzel Washington’s son) is all types of fine?!! Both him and Zendaya acted their butts off!
Wine Pairing: 2018 Charles Smith Boom Boom Syrah (Kroger, $20)
I’m pairing the Boom Boom Syrah with Malcolm & Marie because the verbal sparring between the two is explosive! I mean these two go for the jugular in their argument. This Washington Syrah has layers of red and black fruit, with baked spices and a little bit of earthiness. It’s very giving and complex just like the characters in Malcolm & Marie. You can also find this Syrah at Total Wine. Prices may vary, but you’ll never pay more than $20.
Movie: Boomerang (1992)
Why It’s a Favorite? I’m slightly embarrassed to reveal that I watched this classic for the first time last year. I know, I know. But, if it helps I wasn’t allowed to watch rated R movies growing up and by the time I was an adult I just never circled back to watch some of these movies. Anyways, this is like one of the cutest love stories to me. A clear illustration of what goes around comes around. You have this player that gets played by this sexy, high-powered woman and then ends up falling for the everyday girl. I relate to the everyday girl who is not over sexualized, so I love when she wins.
Wine Pairing: Maison Noir Wines “Love Drunk” Rosé ($25)
I’m pairing this Love Drunk Rosé with Boomerang because the main character Marcus is so infatuated with Jacqueline his sexy, high-powered boss. The woman has him whipped to the point where he’s the one being played. This rosé has aromas of strawberry and raspberry, followed by refreshing flavors of wild strawberry, watermelon rind, and a hint of kiwi. I’m not sure what stores sell this wine, but you can purchase it online through Maison Noir Wines.
Movie: Sylvie’s Love (2020)
Why It’s a Favorite? Sylvie’s Love is another movie that just recently came out. It’s so romantic and Nnamdi Asomugha (the actor who plays the male lead) looks amazing in a suit. *insert emoji with heart eyes* It’s about a love that just won’t go away. It’s the kind of love that you hope will stand the test of time…and it does!
Wine Pairing: “Head Over Heels” Sweet Riesling” Love Cork Screw
The label speaks for itself. These two were just so head over heels in love with each other from the moment they kissed. It was a wrap! This is a sweet riesling for my sweet wine lovers. It has a distinct lemony-grapefruit character. It’s available online through Love Cork Screw for $18.
Movie: Love Jones (1997)
Why It’s a Favorite? Love Jones is another classic that I finally watched all the way through about a year or so ago. It’s another tale of that undeniable love that you just can’t shake. The kind of love that needs time to really mature in order to work. This whole movie is a vibe. There are definitely some characters in this film. The main characters’ love goes through some shady tests, but ultimately they find their way back to each other.
Wine Pairing: 2018 O’Brien Estate Romance ($68)
Plain and simple, Love Jones is a story of romance and that’s why I’m pairing this red with the movie. It has bold blackberry and black current flavors blended with graphite, mineral and toasted oak characters. Unfortunately, Romance is only available for O’Brien Estate members.
Movie: Brown Sugar (2002)
Queue Erykah Badu’s “Love of My Life!” This is my all-time favorite love story!! I love how hip hop is used a metaphor for the love that the female lead Syd has for the male lead Dre. This is the story of two people who were destined to be together, but must go on their own journeys to eventually meet at the same point. I’m a sucker for a romantic comedy and I love the path that ultimately leads these two best friends to each other.
Wine Pairing: 2018 B Side Cabernet Sauvignon (Kroger, $20)
I selected this Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa for this film because its label with the b-side reference instantly reminded me of old school hip hop, which is the heart of this movie. This full-bodied cab has aromas of boysenberry, blackberry, mocha, crushed lavender and sweet oak. It is filled with layers of dark fruit, jam, pepper spice and hints of molasses making it well-structured and intensely flavored with soft tannins and a lengthy finish.
Now, how’s that for a romantic/romantic-ish list of movies? I hope these films bring back some nostalgia and you’ve discovered some new wines to try. This is a pretty diverse list of love stories (and wines) that anyone can enjoy no matter what season of your life you find yourself in. So, what did you think of this list? What’s your favorite love story on film? Share them below. Hope you have a great Val/Gal-entine’s Day. Until next time…glasses up!