Wine Documentary

This soon-to-be-released documentary looks amazing: Somm is the story of four sommeliers attempting to pass the Master Sommelier exam, a grueling test with one of the lowest pass rates in the world. The exam covers literally anything having to do with wine, including history, geography and blind tastings. The four guys, who have been preparing for years, say that they’re truly obsessed, and you can feel their athlete-like tension on the screen. What a fascinating peek into a competitive, high-brow world that most people never see. Would you watch this?

P.S. The 10 best documentaries, and the dos and don’ts of drinking wine.

(Thanks, Michelle)

  1. Hi Joanna,
    Just wanted to alert you that the video link went bad. It happens.

    Heather @ Find That Warm Fuzzy Feeling

  2. Anonymous says...

    I’m in. I would love to watch this…and now for a glass of wine.

  3. I’ve learnt so much about red wine from your posts – and now this! Thaks for sharing, I’ll definitely be checking it out.

    I’m also about to embark on baking a red wine chocolate cake from Smitten Kitchen. Watch this space…

    Maria xx

  4. Joanna, thanks so much for posting! I can’t tell you how cool it is go through the various chapters of your life and get one very meaningful slice captured on film forever. I feel so lucky to part of this experience and can’t wait to see the movie too! Hi, Michelle! Miss you, Rach!

  5. matrix7456 says...

    Every time I watch it, I feel like I am touring the world and wine is my prize. It was wonderful to follow their quest to become masters, but I am glad that I don’t have to study like that!

  6. I am so glad you put this out there because I have a good friend studying for this exam. I think she is on year 4 in working towards it. I can’t wait to share this with her! I am totally intimidated when we go out – I just let her pick what I drink…..haha

  7. this made me think of the roald dahl short story “taste” as well as the british tv show “tales of the unexpected” version of the tale! definitely looks different…

  8. Wow! Looks so intense! I am obsessed with food-related documentaries. So yes, I will probably watch this! Thanks!

  9. Michelle,
    nice to meet you!!! aren’t those guys great! so much of the filming was in our house, I have the best memories of the past few years. It makes me miss them all as I am no longer in SF

  10. Also hi Rachael W! I worked on the film with Jason and Christina! It was fun to watch footage of your husband. What a great group of guys!

  11. Thanks so much for posting Joanna! Jason, Christina and I really appreciate it! We are very excited about the film!

  12. Yea!! I am so glass that you posted this, thank you!! I am actually in this film.. My husband is Dustin Wilson, the handsome man with the shaved head. This project is the culmination of years of passion and dedication for Jason Wise the producer. I am so excited that is is being seen, especially on one of my favorite blogs. Thank you!!

  13. Mersey says...

    I always kept Sommelier in the back of my mind as a possible career choice until I actually spoke to one. They can pick one bottle off a shelf and talk about it for hours. The world of wine is overwhelming!

  14. It sounds fascinating!

  15. Love a good documentary! Can’t wait to see this one…


  16. It reminds me so much of Kings of Pastry… intense! Have you seen that one? I swear I was wound up in total suspense throughout the entire documentary. Here’s a link, if you’re interested at all:

  17. Hi Jo – have you visited the award winning Cornish (UK) vineyard in Camel Valley –

    If not you should check it out next time you visit your grandparents over here. xx

  18. My husband is studying for the Master Somm test currently and I can tell you its def. as intense as it looks in the trailer!

  19. I second Erin’s sentiment. This looks so interesting. Thanks for sharing!

  20. Oh wow! I can’t wait! I grew up in the wine industry in Napa and now work for a winery myself in Oregon so this will have me geeking out like mad! It absolutely boggles my mind how much there is to know about wine (and it’s so fascinating!)… And the best part is you get to enjoy the results and share a bottle with friends!

  21. This looks so awesome. I am such a nerd for these types of movies. My husband and I went to the opening night of Wordplay – the movie about Will Shortz and crossword puzzles. We were the only ones in the theatre.

  22. i like the snail… a delicatessen here in burgundy!

  23. This looks cool…love seeing these sorts of documentaries that follow people!

  24. My girlfriend is doing this. Amazing, I wish I had a palate for it!!

  25. Wait, so you’re saying that Sideways wasn’t a documentary? :P Haha.

    That does look really interesting. Also, I can’t help but feel bad for their friends whenever they have to bring over a bottle. “Um, it’s called Yellowtail…It’s really….niiiice.” hahahaha

  26. That exam is crazy hard. Region? Year? I’m happy when I can ID the varietal. Definitely watching with the husband.

    Reminds me of Kings of Pastry. It’s a documentary about a 3-day event in France that happens every four years. 16 pastry chefs compete for the prestigious Meilleurs Ouvriers de France (Best Craftsmen in France). As an amateur baker I found it fun (and stressful) to watch.

  27. Anonymous says...

    I would love to watch it!

  28. probably not. i think i would be more interested in watching how wine is made. the subculture is certainly interesting!

  29. Interesting! I’ve just turned 21 and through figuring out what my favorite wine is I’ve also discovered that I think the whole process is pretty neat. I’ll have to watch this.

  30. This looks so interesting! I totally want to watch it.

  31. wow! i can’t wait to see this! a year and a half ago, living in california and only being able to name chardonnay and… “red” -I’m from South Carolina, okay?- i set a personal goal for myself to pursue wine studies as a hobby. in the beginning, i didn’t even really like wine! it wasn’t long until my interest turned into a full on obsession. now, i’ll be taking the introductory sommelier course provided by the court of master sommeliers in april!

  32. I’ll definitely see it. The premise reminds me of The Kings of Pastry. Anyone who wants to see it (I highly recommend) it’s streaming on Netflix.

  33. This documentary looks very interesting, I would definitely watch it. Although, I’m a little concerned that it might affect my ability to just enjoy a glass of wine.

  34. Thanks for letting us know about this – I majored in hospitality to become a sommelier or event planner, and though I ultimately chose event planner, I find a career as a sommelier fascinating. (Also still waiting for that degree to pay off. Still unemployed, so this will be nice to watch during all that job research and applications.)

  35. This. Is. My. Life.

  36. Wow! That looks extremely intense. I wonder if they even like wine anymore afterwards.

  37. I love that there is always something new to learn in the wine world. Makes every sip more exciting!

  38. That documentary looks awesome — “Athlete-like Intensity” is the perfect way to describe those guys. Who knew that getting into the wine business was more difficult than say, becoming a CPA. Very interesting!


  39. Yes! I’m totally going to. I’m a Master Som myself!

  40. Becca says...

    I would TOTALLY watch it. I am fascinated by vinoculture, and learning more about it was totally one of my New Year’s resolutions (#selfprofessednerd).


    PS – I’ll admit it, the new Bachelor, Ben’s work on vineyards is HOT!

  41. YES!! I write a bi-weekly web column mostly about wine, beer and spirits, so this is right up my alley! I also grew up in the Finger Lakes, were we joke that kids are giving wine instead of juice in their sippy cups :) I hope I can catch this in a theatre near me.

  42. What an interesting documentary. It was incredible to watch that little video and I’m totally sending it to Balazs. He is so info all things wine. Thanks and have a lovely day:) xo

  43. What you are saying about there being a world for anything, is so true…when you are living in a huge country! :)

    Here you are having a hard time taking your hobby/interest a step further even if that is something as usual as riding bicycles or dancing.
    There’s not enough crowd even for the ordinary things!

    Anyway, fascinated people fascinate me, so I would watch it even though I am (sadly) not a wine fan!

  44. LOVE a good documentary…this one sounds fantastic!
    Thanks for sharing.

  45. This looks neat! I feel like there’s a lot I could learn!

  46. oh how exciting!!! i want to go west this summer and tour the vineyards sooo bad! looking forward to checking out your list of 10 best documentaries.
    thank you!

  47. it’s always so fascinating to me how there are worlds for EVERYTHING. my brother was into unicycling when he was little, and there are unicycle clubs, competitions, etc. everything has it’s own fascinating, huge hidden world if you look for it!

  48. Now I really want a glass of wine! Too bad it’s 10am. :(