As you are aware I am a wine nut, but what you may not know is that I’m also a recovering political junkie. Sometimes my worlds collide! Such was the case on National Drink Wine Day when a friend of mine, a Demographer, dropped by to lift a glass and told me about an article he had seen. Apparently, it told about how what you drink can predict how you’ll vote. Two days later, my Wine Spectator magazine shows up and lo-and-behold there’s a story, “Tell me what you drink and I’ll tell you how you vote.”
So, if you drink Robert Mondavi wines and Jim Beam Bourbon, you probably vote Republican. If you prefer Moët & Chandon or Courvoisier Cognac, chances are you’re a Democrat. Who knew that you were making a political statement every time you reached for a bottle of wine or spirits? Consumer data supplied by research groups GFK, MRI, and analyzed by National Media Research Planning and Placement suggests that what you drink says a lot about how you vote.
How much truth you want to read into this I’ll leave to you. I take it with a big grain of salt, but its fun to kick the results around just the same.
When it comes to domestic wines, devoted Republican voters also tend to drink Kendall-Jackson, Beringer, Fish Eye and Sterling wines. Loyal Democrat voters choose Smoking Loon, Chateau Ste. Michelle, Glen Ellen and Sutter Home. You’ll notice that these are all relatively big, relatively inexpensive brands. I don’t think Screaming Eagle or Château Pétrus factored into the equation, in case the big spenders out there are wondering.
There are some other interesting results to be culled. Republicans tend to like their liquor brown: Wild Turkey, Maker’s Mark, Crown Royal and Canadian Club, which is not entirely surprising. If you spend enough time in the conservative-leaning South, for example, you can’t help but develop a taste for Bourbon or whisky. While Democrats have a thing for Courvoisier Cognac, they generally prefer the clear stuff: Grey Goose vodka, Bombay Sapphire and Tanqueray gins. Apparently the only transparency with Democrats is in their drinks. No report on if the vodka was grass-fed yet either.
Rum is the great uniter. I know it works in my house, both sides of the political spectrum love it; particularly Bacardi, Captain Morgan Spiced and Malibu Coconut. And no matter what your political leanings, if you drink Jägermeister or Don Julio tequila, you rarely vote at all, most likely because you’re unconscious.
Wine Spectator’s authors, Tim Fish and Mitch Frank, reached out to a few of the wineries mentioned in the study and, not surprisingly, most wouldn’t touch the topic with a 10-foot wine thief.
Sparkling wine producer Korbel declined comment, but the fact that its wines were situated safely in the political middle makes sense when you consider it has been served at every presidential inauguration since 1985, both Democrat and Republican. While vintner Don Sebastiani doesn’t read a lot into these types of reports, as a faithful Republican he admitted to having mixed feelings that his brand, Smoking Loon, tops the list with high-turnout Democratic voters. “From a business standpoint I’m thrilled,” the former California State Assemblyman said. “From a political standpoint I’m disappointed.”
Perhaps the most fascinating detail was something the Washington Post pointed out in its analysis. Wine drinkers vote more frequently than spirits drinkers. Among the most-likely voters, 14 of the top 15 brands are wine, not spirits. It seems like wine drinkers are as devoted to democracy as they are the fruit of the vine.
I continued the survey and confirmed its results with my friends and associates. For me the biggest disappointment was Chateau Ste. Michelle, one of my favorite wine producers, being decidedly Left leaning. Bummer, considering I’m to the right of Attila the Hun. I also love classical music too, and that is reported as a characteristic of a Liberal. Oh well, into each life a little rain must fall, so I’m still going to enjoy my Chateau Ste. Michelle and my classical music and keep casting my votes for Conservatives.
Want to see what you drink says about your voting habits? Send me a message with your favorite drink, I’ll let you know how you vote!