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Julia Child's Kitchen at the Smithsonian


Story 5 [of 18] – A Nice Bottle of Chateau Gravée Mastere


Julia and Paul first enjoyed French wines, keeping a small cellar in their home, as the wine list from their pantry shows. Believing, like Europeans, that wine was a part of eating, they later came to appreciate American wines.


“Today, I ’m serving a nice estate-bottled Chateau Gravée Mastere.” On The French Chef, Julia introduced Americans to a post-fifties “homemaker” image of an American family cook by normalizing the very European habit of drinking wine with meals. Unaccustomed to seeing a public figure consume and enjoy wine—while entertaining them in her cooking lessons—Americans inaccurately, but fondly, tagged her as the “tipsy ” chef. The “wine” on the show was fake—actually a mixture of Gravy Master and water—but her message about wine with meals was real. Many more Americans in the sixties began to take that message seriously. Just as they ran out and demanded ducks, broccoli, and omelette pans from their shopkeepers when they saw these things on the show, they began to ask for wine to accompany their meals, in and out of the kitchen.


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