It’s prime Netflix-and-chill season. Instead of binge-watching The Office for the upteenth time, don your favorite never-leaving-the-house-again clothes and hunker down to watch these food-focused and wine-centric documentaries available to stream on Netflix now.
1. In Defense of Food
Every self-proclaimed foodie should know Michael Pollan. The professor, author and activist has studied the intersection of nature and culture for decades with a major focus on food. In this doc, named for his bestselling book In Defense of Food, Pollan exposes the negative impact the industrialization of the Western food chain has had on health. Along the way, he shares his philosophy on what each of us can do to correct our course, both as individuals and as a society.
2. Jeremiah Tower: The Last Magnificent
Jeremiah Tower: The Last Magnificent is a revealing profile of one of America’s first celebrity chefs. This unforgettable documentary studies the storied career and enigmatic personality of Jeremiah Tower, one of the pioneers behind today’s “California Cuisine” and the Farm-to-Table Movement.
3. Jiro Dreams of Sushi
85-year-old Jiro Ono owns and operates a 10-seat sushi restaurant in a Tokyo train station that’s been awarded the prestigious 3-star rating by the world-famous Michelin Guide. The film Jiro Dreams of Sushi looks at the man considered the world’s premier sushi chef, showcasing the intersection of his personal and professional life along with the almost unbelievable lengths his customers will go to in order to secure a seat at his counter.
4. Prohibition: A Film by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick
Nothing satisfies a documentary-lover quite like a Ken Burns PBS doc, and Prohibition doesn’t disappoint. Burns and Novick take their signature deep-dive into the movement that helped birth The Mob and illustrates how the passage and repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment shaped our cultural politics for generations.
5-7. Somm, Somm: Into the Bottle, Somm 3
This is a trilogy for die-hard oenophiles and wine novices alike. Somm follows four aspiring sommeliers as they prepare to take the Master Sommelier Exam. It’s an intimate look at preparing to take a test so difficult that less than 200 people have passed it in the past 40 years.
In the next installment, Somm: Into the Bottle, director Jason Wise delves into everything that goes into producing wine, from cultivation to the aging process and travels the globe to show what wine is and why we love it.
In last year’s Somm 3, Wise attempts to uncork the mystery of wine’s appeal from a broader and more educational approach by tapping critics and tasting experts from all over the industry. The experiment yields thought-provoking results.