Leighton's Woodlands Wine and Drink List

Leighton's Woodlands Wine and Drink List

Usage conditions apply
This Wine and Drink List, from the early 1950s, is from Leighton’s Woodland Lake Restaurant in Ardsley, New York. It reflects the era when American wine producers were beginning to use varietal (grape type) labeling. The menu includes this explanation: “The American wines are produced in the famous painstaking vineyards of California, and, in most cases, the label carries the name of the true European grape from which the wine was made.”
A look at the list, however, reveals that both generic and varietal labels are provided, perhaps to allow American wine drinkers to understand both the old and new ways of labeling wine. For example, under “American White Wines” is a Chablis (generic), which is also listed as Pinot Blanc (varietal). Likewise, under the “American Red Wines,” a Burgundy (generic) is also listed as Pinot Noir (varietal).
Another feature of note is the menu advice under both American white and red wine categories. At this time (the early 1950s), the majority of Americans were not wine drinkers and restaurants and wine producers provided basic guidance on food and wine pairings. For American whites, this list recommends: “White wines, served chilled, are a natural accompaniment to seafood, fowl, salads, and light meats.” For American reds: “Fine red wines are always a complement to steak, lamb, roasted fowl, chops or other red meats. They are usually served at room temperature.”
Currently not on view
Object Name
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
grey (overall color)
overall: 9 in x 6 in; 22.86 cm x 15.24 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Gift of the Wente Family Estate through Christine Wente
See more items in
Work and Industry: Food Technology
Data Source
National Museum of American History
Nominate this object for photography.   

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.


Add a comment about this object