An Evening With Djokovic (and Jacob’s Creek)

I went to a Jacob’s Creek wine tasting and cooking demonstration at which Novak Djokovic made a special appearance. What was the tennis star doing there?

The Australian wine brand is the official wine partner of the U.S. Open Tournament and Djokovic—a three-time consecutive Australian Open winner—is the star of Jacob’s Creek’s “Made By” film series.

JCwineglassesHeld at the Astor Center in New York, the Aug. 27 event was to introduce Jacob’s Creek’s Two Lands, a recent collaboration between the Australian wine brand and noted Napa winemaker Ehren Jordan. We started off with the wine tasting portion and sampled the Two Lands pinot grigio, chardonnay, shiraz and cabernet sauvignon.

The wines, described by the brand folks as “California craft meets Australian character,” were all pretty good, but the whites really stood out—especially the pinot grigio. One of the comments pointed out that the pinot had the viscosity and “slately” feel that you can get with a riesling. The grapes were harvested a little later, due to conditions in the vineyard, which gave the wine higher acidity.

DJ lookingWe then moved on to the cooking portion, where celebrity chef Casey Thompson brought in Djokovic to assist her and share some healthy eating tips in preparation for the U.S. Open. Djokovic said that he grew up working in his family’s restaurant business.

“We are famous in Serbia for pancakes,” he said, adding that grilled meats are another specialty of the Balkan country.

Djokovic, who stopped eating wheat five years ago, said he typically eats lighter proteins, such as chicken, fish and turkey. He and Thompson whipped up some gluten-free pasta with shrimp and kale.

The #1 ranked men’s tennis player showed his softer side when putting the shrimp into the hot pan. “Poor shrimp, I don’t like seeing the eyes, honestly,” he said.

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