Jun 23 2009

Wine and celebrities: who’s drinking whom?

Pirates may drink rum, but Johnny Depp drinks Burgundy.

Pirates drink rum, but Johnny Depp drinks Burgundy!

Our recent post on Scarlett Johansson’s new leading role–as Moët & Chandon’s spokeswoman–got me thinking about the wines that other notable celebrities associate themselves with. Do most wine-loving stars simply choose the obvious greats, like Jack Nicholson and his penchant for Veuve Clicquot? Or do they decide to make their own, like Dave Matthews does in Virginia or Francis Ford Coppola in Alexander Valley, California?

I did a little research to find out.

According to the New York Times, though rapper Jay-Z’s lyrics tend to include Cristal, his taste in wine is somewhat broader. “”I’m not championing a specific brand,” he told the Times. ”I’m experimenting with a lot of rosés now. I’ve always loved Dom P. rosé, but Krug rosé is also excellent right now.”

Johnny Depp’s taste in wine is decidedly more specific: he cites “Château Calon-Ségur, a Saint-Estèphe third-growth” as his favorite.

Depp’s “Pirates of the Caribbean” co-star Keira Knightley isn’t brand specific, but in 2006, she informed Elle Magazine: “I haven’t been to the gym since January and I’m drinking about half a bottle of wine a night.”

Our third president Thomas Jefferson made his loyalty to French wine widely known, stating that “Wine is a daily necessity for me” and saying of Bordeaux’s Chateau d’Yquem wine, “This is the best white wine of France and the best of it is made by Monsieur de Lur-Saluces.” And while Richard Nixon’s favorite food was reportedly (and repulsively) cottage cheese and ketchup, his taste in wine was decidedly more classy: he adored Château Margaux.

Our current president Barack Obama keeps his wine preferences more discreet, though he and Michelle do have a 1,000-bottle cellar in their Hyde Park, Chicago home. On a recent trip to France with her husband, Michelle made headlines in wine and food publications the world over by enjoying a 2005 Hugel “Tradition” Pinot Gris over dinner avec French First Lady Carla Bruni. As far as her husband is concerned, rumors swirl that President Obama’s preferences lie with everything from Kendall Jackson Chardonnay to South African Graham Beck Brut, which he allegedly toasted with on Election Night (perhaps in honor of Nelson Mandela, who toasted his own election in 1994 with Graham Beck Brut).

Mike Ditka, Sting, Nancy Pelosi and Jeff Gordon are among notable names who own their own wine labels or vineyards. One is left to wonder if celebrities drink one another’s brands? Does Olivia Newton-John compare her Aussie “Koala Blue” label to Sam Neill’s New Zealand product? Does “Sopranos” star Lorraine Bracco pit her Italian wines against Bob Dylan’s? Does Coppola’s nephew Nicholas Cage swear by the family brand? Or better yet, does Coppola’s daughter Sofia Coppola celebrate special occasions with the “Sofia” sparkling wine her father named for her?

Regardless, one things for sure. Of all wine-loving celebrities, Johnny Depp’s the only one we know to have it literally tattooed on his body: he had his inked tribute to former girlfriend Winona Ryder changed from “Winona forever” to “Wino forever.”

One response so far