Wines of the White House
Seeing as Monday is President’s Day, we thought we’d share some fun facts about our great presidents and their drinking habits. Being president is a tough job and these guys knew how to relax and kick back for a while.
- JFK’s favorite wine was the bubbly and his First Lady Jackie O had expensive taste- Veuve Clicquot.
- Jimmy Carter made his own wine, inheriting 15 acres of vineyards from his grandfather in Georgia.
- Reagan’s team had a hard time getting him into makeup before appearances so they’d put out a bottle of French wine, knowing he couldn’t resist, which helped to bring a healthy color to his face.
- Thomas Jefferson was known as the “First Father of Wine” and he had a cellar built in the West Wing that could hold up to 20,000 bottles for his personal collection.
- Nixon had a thing for Bordeaux, particularly Chateau Margaux, but he was hesitant to share it. Rumor has it that he had his waiters serve a much less expensive wine to his guests with a towel wrapped around the bottle to hide the label.
- Although George Washington was a whiskey man and actually distilled his own, when he came to wine, he was a big fan of a fortified Portuguese wine called Madeira.
- Mary Todd Lincoln, the wife of Honest Abe, was the first to serve American wines at a state dinner back in 1861, although Lincoln himself barely ever drank.
- James Monroe purchased 1,200 bottles of Burgundy and Champagne from France and charged it to the White House as a furniture-related expense. Scandal!