With the Coronation fast approaching, our SW Wine Shop team have been looking at the Royal Family's wine preferences. King Charles was presented with an Aston Martin for his 21st birthday, which runs on biofuel called E85 made from 85% surplus English white wine and whey from the cheese process and 15% unleaded petrol.
In terms of actually drinking wine, state events and banquets require upwards of 5,000 bottles annually, and Windsor Castle’s cellar alone holds 18,000 bottles. Bottles under a tenner are by no means unknown, and there have even been selections under £5! There are some very fine wines naturally, but great effort goes into ensuring wines appeal widely rather than simply being expensive.
The Clerk and Yeoman of the Royal Cellar (part-time members of the Royal household) purchase drinks and advise on wine pairings, assisted by The Royal Household Wine Committee, which includes such authorities as Jancis Robinson. All wines are tasted blind to ensure no preference is given to any financial interest, and every penny is accounted for. The monarch also has a personal wine advisor, which is usually a 'post for life'.
The Royal Family's vineyard was planted in 2011, and its wines are sold via Laithwaites as Windsor Great Park Vineyard Brut. Other Royal wines can be sampled through the Royal Collection Trust (RCT), a charitable department of the Royal Household.
According to sources, Pol Roger 'White Foil' Champagne has recently been served at Royal weddings, and the late Queen favoured Nyetimber Classic Cuvee, an English sparkling wine. The family are also partial to Port, wine from Bordeaux and Tokaji dessert wine.
To celebrate the upcoming Coronation, we have put together white, red and mixed cases of wine to enjoy over the Bank Holiday weekend. Enjoy!