The Oscars are kind of a big deal for our family. Over the years, our interest in the awards show grew and grew. Then I got a job in the film industry, and things got really interesting. My wonderful wife took on the challenge of making Oscars night special. Even though I left the industry years ago, this tradition has expanded into a “must see” event among the family.
The Oscars night at our house revolves around the “Best Picture” nominees. We do our best to see the nominees, and we create ballots for all attendees to complete. The prize is one year of bragging rights, but the intensity in the room would imply that there’s a big cash prize, as the leader board ebbs and flows as the Oscars are distributed.
What really makes the night special at our house is the dinner menu. Judi takes this challenge very seriously. Each item is inspired in some way by a Best Picture nominee. The days and weeks leading up to the Oscars are a bit tense, as menu items are conceived, evaluated, and (many times) discarded. Making it onto the final menu is the food product equivalent of being nominated for an Oscar. Probably. At least in our house. There IS a Kale Hall of Fame, right?
The festivities begin early at the house. That means champagne for sipping as we watch the Red Carpet. We try to be respectful of everyone’s outfit, but some of the actresses push things just a bit too far. Really, feathers? At least the sparkling has US covered. We will be enjoying Ruby Hill Sparkling and Mirabelle Brut Rose. It’s all about choices!
Our family takes antipasto very seriously. This year’s The Theory of Everything inspired the antipasto of everything. Think an abundance of smoked/dried meats, cheeses from around the world and veggies with and without marinades. We will be serving a 2008 Eagle Ridge Pinot Grigio to complement the array of flavors in this amazing variety plate. Since our family loves this wine, I’m glad that I have several on hand.
The main courses, inspired by films American Sniper, Birdman, Whiplash, Royhood and Selma, are varied and quite snackable. That’s important, because the awards will be rolling out now and everyone will be scrambling to keep their ballot scored and up-to-date. So, ballot in one hand, Whiplash drumstick in another hand, and a glass of 2010 Darcie Kent Picazo Merlot in another… oh, wait. So that’s why we have all those side tables, right? For those so inclined, Coors Light (the silver bullet, get it?) is also served in honor of American Sniper.
As we make it to desserts, and the award scoring gets really serious, we break out the ports. Yes, plural, because we all appreciate port, but not exactly the same port. We will offer MadLyn from Eagle Ridge and Decade from Eckert Estates, to pair with binary cookies for The Imitation Game and Kis Tortes from Mendl’s Bakery in The Grand Budapest Hotel.
As the last trophies are awarded and the scores are totaled around the living room, we will be offering a wide array of artisan coffees (a great gift from Rob) and figuring out how many years in a row Sarah has won.
It should be a great night. I hope that the acceptance speeches are articulate and SHORT. Good luck everyone!
p.s. If you would like to see the recipe for any menu item, leave us a note in the comments.
About the Author: John grills a mean steak and is always in the market for another wine fridge. Believes that if a winery has more than 10 employees, it's probably too big. Buys wine faster than he drinks it, but who cares?