This month, Dinner and a Movie is for Adults Only!

Savage & Cooke

1097 Nimitz Avenue (on Mare Island)
Vallejo, CA 94592
Open Thursday through Sunday 12 pm – 7 pm


This totally cool distillery was founded in 2016 by entrepreneur Dave Phinney, a winemaker by trade.  Phinney’s wine successes have included Orin Swift and The Prisoner brands. Now, Mare Island’s repurposed naval offices house a tasting room/bar, administrative space and a barrel room.  A large glass case full of thousands of bullet shells sits by the bar, while busts of horses and Mao Zedong appear on shelves around the large, minimalistic space—creating a hip and eclectic feel.

Rows of tan barrels emblazoned with the company’s logo welcome in the whiskey, rye and Bourbon.

The facility pumps out more than 160 barrels a month.  Among the results are The Burning Chair American Bourbon, Second Glance American Whiskey and Lip Service American Rye Whiskey.  Phinney’s recent collaboration with Scottie Pippen, NBA Champion, has resulted in DIGITS, a five year-old Bourbon whiskey. Stellar.

The restaurant serves a short but tasty dinner menu of Blanchard’s famous fried chicken—chicken and a biscuit, chicken sandwiches, whole fried chickens, half bird baskets and, well, chicken. Oh so crispy on the outside and deliciously tender within—no greasiness!  Also, “southern sides”—fried pickles, mac & cheese, collard greens and more.  But wait! Don’t miss the delicious craft cocktails; over-the-top creations at the full bar. Some with orchids, some in shades of lavender, some with grilled pineapple. Gracie’s favorite is the “Churchill,” which comes with a smoking cigar (cinnamon stick) across the top. This is a special place. Cheers!

“Too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough.” –Mark Twain

The Angels’ Share

1 hour, 41 minutes
Stream on Amazon Prime
Rated R for language (lots), brief violence
Strong Scottish brogue is assisted by subtitles

Directed by Ken Loach, a renowned British director and screenwriter, this film won the Jury Prize for a feature film at the Cannes Film Festival when released.

At its best, this is a feel good, heart warming movie; at worst, it shows the despair of poverty and desperation—but with hope.

The early minutes are a bit rough..but necessary.  Filmed in Scotland, it becomes an endearingly clumsy, wishful, adventurous caper that results in redemption and new beginnings.

Most of the actors are locals with no acting experience.

Robbie (played by the delightful Paul Brannigan), has a troubled temperament that leads to a court order for hundreds of hours of community service. He’s determined to shape up and provide a better life for his newborn son.  A visit to a whiskey distillery reveals he has a sharp, nuanced nose for good liquor. He and his similarly downtrodden sidekicks plan an improbable and adventurous heist—and it’s not what you think.

Robbie’s community service supervisor is a hero—not only a connoisseur of good whisky, but a regular guy with a huge heart who sees the possibilities in everything. Magic Moon really loved this story—so real, so hopeful, so victorious, in the most unpredictable of circumstances.

Note: “Angels’ share” refers to the small percentage of whisky that evaporates in the cask each year. We love that. Maybe there’s a metaphor in there somewhere.

Movie Magic gives this movie 3 ¾ moons.

Cocktail from Savage & Cooke
The Angels' Share movie art
The Angels' Share characters jumping up and down