Carson-Verzola Historical & Audio Archives --

American Presidents-Presidential candidates --Their Food & Drink Preferences & Dislikes--A fun Survey & Overview

Does Obama eat Pork--Hot Dogs or Ribs?


During this presidential election season, many wantabe politicians have often quoted Harry Truman. Truman's most popular phrase was"the Buck stops here." By "Buck", he meant deer in the context of hunting whether the person had his legal quota or it was hunting season or not.

Before Harry Truman entered the US Army in world war one,as a Captain, he was Missouri farmer, who owned some hogs. Among the anecdotes about farmer truman were"When Harry sharpens his knife, the pigs run screaming to pasture...." Harry was quite a skilled pig castigator.

The following is an overview and survey of American Presidents, Presidential candidates, and their food and drink preferences and dislikes:

Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were fond of ice cream for desert. Washington also liked good champagne and Madeira wine

Jefferson was also fond of good wine. Among the US Presidents, He was probably the greatest expert and connoisseur on wine . He even experimented with crossing various grape vines

John Quincy Adams preferred corn and fresh fruits, he may have been the first president who was a "closet vegetarian"

President Zachary Taylor was the only president to die because of something he ate.On July 4, 1850, President Taylor ate cherries and drank milk at a ceremony at the Washington Monument. He became ill from the heat and died five days later, became the second president to die in office.

Franklin Pierce was one of the worst US Presidents. Maybe that is why Pierce died of cirrhosis of the liver as a result of years of heavy drinking.

Abe Lincoln's mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln, died when the family dairy cow ate poisonous mushrooms and she drank the milk.

In 1833, Abe Lincoln once had a liquor store license. He reportedly owned several liquor stores before he became president.

Andrew Johnson had flour shipped from Tennessee, it was specially milled, the kind he liked.

Ulysses S. Grant ate a cucumber soaked in vinegar for breakfast each day.Witness to some of the bloodiest battles in history, Grant could not stomach the sight of animal blood -- rare steak nauseated him. He didn't like steak tatare

Rutherford B. Hayes couldn't drink.His wife, Lucy Hayes, known as "lemonade Lucy", banned alcohol, smoking, dancing, and card playing from the White House.Hayes and his wife conducted the first Easter egg roll on the White House lawn. It is not recorded if anyone ate the eggs.

Chester Arthur's favorite food was mutton chops. He was the first President who was accused of being born outside of the US. His critics accused him of being born on the Canadian side of the Vermont border. Arthur denied this charge.

Grover Cleveland: The Baby Ruth candy bar was named after Cleveland's baby daughter, Ruth. Maybe this was the "Ma Ma where's my pa, he's in the White House Ha Ha Ha!"

Teddy Roosevelt was a big game hunter, who also owned a herd of cattle. He liked strong coffee.
In 1912, Roosevelt took a drink of coffee and exclaimed, "That coffee tastes good, even to the last drop!" TR authored the Maxwell House Coffee motto that the company used in all of its advertising TR was a great and active hunter, it isn't known what he ate when he was on his hunting trips and safaris.

William Taft was the fattest man to be elected president. Taft kept a cow on the White House lawn to supply him with fresh milk. He was the last president to do so.

Woodrow Wilson: During his presidency, a flock of sheep grazed on the White House lawn..
Their wool was sold to raise money for the Red Cross during World War I. It isn't known whether or not the Wilsons ate lamb or muttonWoodrow Wilson had a sheep named "Old Ike" that chewed tobacco and grazed on the lawn of the White House. Nothing is known about its final fate--old mutton?

Harding played poker at least twice a week. He once gambled away an entire set of White House china, dating back to Benjamin Harrison's time. His advisors were given the nickname of the "Poker Cabinet" because they all played poker together. Harding was a drinker in the White House even during prohibition. But during his tainted administration, on October 7, 1922, he ordered the banning of alcoholic beverages on all American ships as well as any foreign ships and craft that entered American ports or were in American ports. This was a classic politician hypocrisy of " Do as I order not as I do!"

Calvin Coolidge enforced the prohibition against liquor laws. Calvin Coolidge revealed his envy of his servants' food — specifically, their big griddle cakes in contrast to his dainty ones.

During Prohibition Herbert Hoover would visit the Belgian Embassy in Washington D.C. for drinks. It was considered foreign soil, so drinking was legal there. Herbert Hoover's favorite drink was a martini. Hoover defeated New York Governor Al Smith for the Presidency. Smith, a Roman Catholic and an Irish ethnic was an apologetic "wet." He vehemently opposed Prohibition.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt's favorite food was fried cornmeal mush. Franklin Roosevelt liked scotch or brandy; he also mixed martinis. When serving a turkey, nobody could cut a thinner slice off a turkey than FDR.

Harry S.Truman: His favorite drink was bourbon. He reportedly had a glass in the moring for breakfast. President Truman was often fond of a glass of bourbon. His favorite brand was I.W. Harper. His wife, Bess, never knew that he kept a hidden stash of it in his personal bathroom.

Gifts of food that were sent to the White House, were reportedly first tested on monkeys/animals that were kept in the White House basement. When the animal welfare groups learned of the practice of testing suspected poisoned food on animals, they protested and the practice reportedly stopped.

No one knows how the President and his family is protected from poisoned food that is sent as gifts for the President.

Truman once said, "No man should be allowed to be president who doesn't understand hogs."

Dwight D. Eisenhower was a wonderful cook, who specialized in barbecued steaks. Ike's favorite dessert was prune whip. He was the first president in the White House who preferred to cook his own meals.

Jack Kennedy: Seafood. Jackie Bouvier Kennedy served french cuisine in the White House.

Lyndon Johnson: Scotch and soda, tapioca pudding & Fresca the soft drink

Richard Nixon: privately preferred French wine, but served California wines in the White House. His favorite food was cottage cheese with ketchup. Richard Nixon preferred rum and coke and dry martinis for his hard liquor

Gerald R. Ford: served wine from Michigan but it had few takers. Gerald Ford drank gin and tonic

Jimmy Carter, taking a cue from "lemonade Lucy" Carter, banned hard liquor from the white house but allowed wine. Jimmy Carter's mother said, "I'm a Christian, but that doesn't mean I'm a long-faced square. I like a little bourbon."

Ronald Reagan: Red Wine with his steaks. His beef came from his private herd of beef cattle. Reagan was booster of California wines.

George Bush, Sr: Bush was the first president to publicly refuse to eat broccoli. Broccoli farmers got mad and began sending truckloads of broccoli to the White House. His wife, Barbara, accepted the broccoli, but Bush said, "I am President of the United States and I don't have to eat it.

Bill Clinton: has a reputation for eating junk food. Hillary served American food when she was first lady.

George Bush Jr. reportedly doesn't drink beer, but there is story from a White House Cook about Bush Jr. and his preference for pinot grigio wine. Laura Bush prefers wine from Texas, especially from the Becker winery.

Contrary to popular belief, the first wine grapes planted in America were planted by spanish monks, who traveled up from Mexico to Texas



Hillary Clinton offers "Leg, Breast or Thigh?"

Hillary Clinton says, "I'm a lousy cook, but I make pretty good soft scrambled eggs."Hillary's favorite drink is a "cosmopolitan" a cocktail concoction--"pink and strong." A Hilariti




McCain a "Hot Dog?"

John McCain likes baby back ribs--did he ever invite Obama to a barbecure and offer any ribs to Obama? If McCain chooses Mit Romney as his running mate, Romney too likes hot dogs--but no beer to swallow it down. McCain likes a straight Martini.

If McCain chooses Duncan Hunter (California), Hunter's favorite food is reportedly "chicken fried venison."

Does Obama eat Pork?

If Obama is eating a hot dog is it kosher?

Obama's favorite food is chili but he didn't disclose whether or not it was beef, chicken, turkey, pork or vegetarian. Reportedly, Obama likes a pizza from a Pizzeria in Hyde Park district of Chicago. There is no indication whether or not it contains pork--italian sausage.

Obama's favorite drink is a Malibu with tropical fruit juice mixers.

Ron Paul, the medical doctor's favorite drink is a Texas Tea (vodka, gin, rum, tequila, bourbon, triple sec, sweet & sour mix, and Coke)

Dennis Kucinich: If he ever got the Democratic party's presidential nomination, Dennis Kucinich would have been outed as a vegetarian. He prefers fresh fruits. Kucinich's favorite drink is a "Stoli" vodka with a splash of orange juice. Is this(Russia) the source of Dennis's socialist agenda?

Some of this material Peter Paul Verzola used in this fun article was from his book on the Presidents that didn't get published because the publisher went bankrupt. Still, the copyright applies.

Suggested Movies involving War, politicians, presidents, Kings and Food:

The Private Life of Henry the 8th (1933) staring Charles Laughton

Tennessee Johnson(1942) film on President Andrew Johnson, starring Van Heflin

Civil War: The Horse Soldiers(1959 ) directed by John Ford --starring John Wayne, William Holden and Constance Towers--contains that famous line from Constance Towers while serving Wayne and Holden dinner-"Breast or Thigh."

Truman's more relevant remark is "If a man doesn't understand hogs, he's not qualified to be president. Maybe that's why politicians fight over that "pork barrel"

Dating from1946 and named in honor of the archivist's mother, Margaret, the extensive collection started assembling in 1964.

Peter Paul ( Ver zola) formerly known in radio as "Peter Paul" is heard on

Since 1982, Peter Paul has been connected as a radio/producer/ talk show host/ researcher/ investigator to:

Western Public Radio
KALW FM San Francisco Unified School District
Australian Broadcasting Corporation(Interviews)
KGO Radio ABC San Francisco
KP00--KPFA ( Berkeley)
Floater Correspondent South Pacific--Australia--New Zealand--KIRO RADIO Seattle

Print: San Francisco Magazine San Francisco Business Times--Oakland Tribune--Community Animal Control--American Kennel Club Magazine

Nationally--Jack Anderson--AIM--Reed Irvine--Joe Goulden--Roger Caras--

Animal Control

American Kennel Club

Currently heard on Thursdays at

Bill Brumbaugh's Proactive News is expected to be back on the air in January 2007

Relevant websites and reliable Media: SF NewBayView. East Bay Express--more to be listed

Email Peter Paul at

April 2008