The drinking preferences of presidential hopefuls Barack Obama and John McCain were revealed this week in an online quiz.
In the White House Wine Quiz, players have to answer questions on the drinking habits of current candidates and presidents past, and delve into the history of wine in the White House.
According to the quiz, Obama is described as a founding member of the wine and cheese club, though is said to partake equally (though judiciously) of cocktails, beer and wine.
The quiz also tell us that Francophile Richard Nixon had his wine poured from napkin-draped bottles to hide the fact that he favoured French wines over domestic, while Lyndon Johnson started the tradition of serving only American wines at the White House, a tradition that continues to this day.
Thomas Jefferson was apparently so passionate about wine he built 16 ft deep cellars in the White House and purchased over 20,000 bottles of European wine during his eight years in office. Four Bordeaux first growths belonging to Jefferson are currently embroiled in a high profile lawsuit.
More recently, Bill Clinton, after visiting one of China’s foremost rice wine producers in 2003, lobbied for his successor to serve rice wine at the White House. Unfortunately for the Chinese, a Republican was elected.
While the quiz reveals the Democrats to be more liberal in their drinking habits, the same cannot be said of the Republicans – McCain and Palin drink very rarely.
Although a little known Chilean wine is enjoying a surge of popularity thanks to the self-styled ‘pitbull in lipstick’. Sales of Palin Syrah in right-wing Houston, Texas have been particularly strong.
‘We wanted to create something relevant to our nation’s current political experience and keep it light-hearted and non-partisan’, said Stefan Smith, president of Fine Wine Games, Inc., makers of the quiz.
‘We’re not revealing any dark, incriminating secrets’, Smith added.
Take the quiz at www.wineteasers.com/whitehouse/.
Written by Lucy Shaw