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With the ability to watch movies from our homes, heading to the movie theater is not as common today. But, there is something special about sitting back in a large dark theater with surround sound and watching a movie on the big screen. At Studio Movie Grill, watching a movie combines the grandeur of watching a movie on a big screen with the comfort you would get at home. Add in-theater dining and personal service and that is why Studio Movie Grill is the Please The Palate Pick of the Week. Studio Movie Grill, established by Brian Schultz in 1993, is the first movie theater concept to offer in-theater dining. He started with one theater in 1993 and today there are more than 250 screens throughout the United States. Studio Movie Grills can be found in 34 locations across California, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, North Carolina, Texas, Pennsylvania, Indiana and Virginia.
There are dozens of movies in which drinking wine or making wine are a central theme. There are comedy-dramas, buddy-movies and romance movies about wine. Often how wine is portrayed it not realistic and misleading. There is the fantasy of living on a vineyard, the romanticism of falling in love in a vineyard, the comedy of wine tasting with friends. But very few portray the reality of life on a vineyard, the challenges winemakers face, combined with their passion. The new film Back to Burgundy, a French film by acclaimed director Cédric Klapisch, is all of that and more and that is why it is the Please The Palate pick of the week. I love a movie that engages me, that tells a good story and develops characters that I care about. Add to that a beautiful backdrop and Back to Burgundy is all that and more. So much of the writing that I do is sharing the stories of people in the wine industry. I meet winemakers around the world and many, especially from European countries, are the third, fourth, fifth, six, seventh, or even more, generation in their family to make wine. They share stories about the land, the place, their families, their histories and their futures.
When those movies come out that are about food, do you find it hard to sit through them without drooling or your stomach rumbling?  Think about theses some of these movies - Big Night, Julie & Julia, Chef, Big Night and the most recent food-driven movie, The Hundred-Foot Journey. As images food, cooking and eating appear on the screen, I know that I, for one, start licking my lips, dreaming about what I will eat when the move ends and wishing the popcorn was more satisfying. Imagine if you could be eating dishes inspired by the film as you were sitting and watching it. Well, you can aboard Celebrity Cruises. As you are sailing on the open sea on one of three ships, you can experience a multi-sensory journey of watching a specific cultural, culinary or destination-based film, while dining on cuisine that brings the movie's scenes to life through your taste buds. And, I got a taste of that experience during the first land-based Taste of Film Experience in Southern California at the Newport Beach Film Festival. Celebrity Cruises A Taste of Film The movie was The Hundred Food Journey, the story of an extraordinarily talented and largely self-taught culinary novice who's family is displaced from their native India and settle in a quaint French village. They open an Indian eatery but  the proprietress of an acclaimed restaurant just 100 feet away strongly objects. War erupts between the two establishments, until the young chef's impressive epicurean gifts are recognized and the proprietress takes him under her wing.