In the 1880’s, Pope Saint Pius X, Queen Victoria, and Pope Leo XIII all went on record in praise of a new wine – Vin Mariani. Valued for it’s medicinal properties, Vin Mariani was a popular drink of the day made with Bordeaux wine…Bordeaux wine and cocaine, that is. Pope Leo XIII even went so far as to award a medal of excellence to the drink, as well as appearing in a poster endorsing its use.
Never heard of Vin Mariani? Perhaps you are more familiar with the drink it inspired…a little old carbonated version called Coca-Cola.