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Blood of the Vines – Three Days of the Condor

by TFH Team Nov 21, 2013

It would happen this way: You may be walking one day and a car will slow down beside you. A door will open and someone you you know – perhaps someone you trust – will smile and offer you… a bottle of wine.

The 1970s brought a new kind of spy movie to us – the kind where the government wears the black hat. These modern spies are corporate killers who do what they do not for love of anything. They do what they do because that’s what the memo said to do.

Robert Redford may not be the spy in “Three Days of the Condor,” but he sure has the thrill-a-minute life foisted upon him. This guy can’t pick up the mail without dodging bullets. Of course, nowadays that’s not so unusual. Don’t watch this movie if you skipped giving your mailman a holiday tip.

Redford’s character – a CIA researcher – wants to come in from the cold, only to find he’s already in and the air conditioning is stuck on 32. He’s so cold he has to open the fridge to get warm – not to mention there might be a postman in there. It’s not paranoia if they really are out to get you.

Redford’s code name is “Condor,” and the tactics the government uses in trying to keep him quiet sure have him feeling like an endagered species. Max Von Sydow will make you feel like that. Blood doesn’t run colder than that of his character. Things do heat up a bit for Condor when Faye Dunaway realizes things could be worse than playing hostage to a guy who looks like Redford.

Now the car slows down, and the smiling man offers a refreshing drink of wine.

Condor’s Hope Vineyard is named for its location in Santa Barbara County where condors are released into the wild. The winery releases big Zinfandels and Shiraz into the wild, but only 400 cases at a time. Most of their wines sell for under $20. They might be a little hard to find, but that’s how condors are. If you order some, you might want to get it sent by FedEx.

I spy some other wines:


Condor Wines Northwest – I love wines with a purpose, and the purpose of this eastern Washington winery is hunger relief in Peru.  The wines are produced and bottled by Elk Cove Vineyards of Gaston, Oregon.  They are named after the condor, the national bird of Peru.  Their 2008 Barbera is $25.

Penley Estate Condor – Located in the Coonawarra Valley in the southeastern part of Australia, The Condor wine is a bold Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon blend, so named for the strength and stamina of the condor.  $20

Spy Valley Wines – From New Zealand’s Marlborough region, there’s a good variety of wine for under $20.

Wine Spies – An online wine retailer that sells it “spy-style,” with operative notes and descriptive dossiers on their offerings.

Spy Wine Cooler commercial – Here’s what happens when too many condors fly over your car.

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