Sunday, December 13, 2009

The House that Dripped Brunello

I am a sucker for campy vintage horror films, and love nothing more than enjoying a juicy gothic tale with friends who appreciate my taste for these atmospheric gems.

So the other night I invited my friend Yo over for pizza, some wine and The House the Dripped Blood, an obscure English horror flick from the early 1970's. With genre staples like Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing in the cast, this one is a chilling and brilliant example of these films, which are often infused with brilliant, cinematographic reds and deep purples.

We were fortunate enough to pair our meal and horror-watching with a 2003 Brunello di Montalcino, courtesy of Jeff, who heads up the wine department at World Market. Jeff insisted I take the bottle as a Christmas gift for being such a loyal customer, an offer I cheerfully obliged. This coveted Tuscan wine is made from Sangiovese Grosso, a clone of the Sangiovese grape, and was produced by Gaetano D'Aquino.

Yo and I agreed that the wine was a bit dry and slightly tannic upon first tasting, but it opened up a lot in the glass as the night wore on. Brunello has a brilliant ruby color to it, much like some of the hues seen throughout the film, and this wine was no exception, with more fruit emerging as it decanted.

Something else emerged as well as the night drew to a close. Yo recently received a box in the mail with the instructions "Return to Karen Black" (Black is Yo's favorite B-movie actress, as I mentioned in a previous post). As we were finishing up the last of the Brunello we heard a rustling sound, and the next thing we knew there was a Zuni fetish doll sitting on the floor, staring up menacingly at us.

Needless to say, the strangeness that ensued was reminiscent of Trilogy of Terror, one of Black's finest cinematic moments. I'm just glad Yo was able to escape and lived to tell everyone about her evening of Italian wine, and the vivid imagination of a horror-crazed friend.

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