In the final momentsdrinking


Status
Not open for further replies.
Feb 21, 2005
671
7
183
This question might come as a bit odd.

It is speculated that the infamous baker who rode the stern down during it's final plunge was under the influence of alcohol. As far as I've read here, that's just speculation and not fact. Which brings me to my question.

Do you (any of you) think that maybe some people did decide to go ahead and catch a final "buzz" once they realized there was no chance of survival. I mainly speak for the first and third class, since Second Class seems to get very little attention.

But anyone on that ship in that situation. Do you think they may have realized their fate and decided to have a few drinks before the end.

I would tend to think that if I'm near the end of my life, knowing what frigid fate awaits me, I doubt I would pass up one last brandy or at least a few stiff shots.

Always wondered about that. Of course it's only speculation, but what do you all think?
 
Jun 12, 2004
2,131
13
233
Matt,

It's entirely possible, and Titanic probably wasn't/would have been the only example of a sinking during which some of its occupants had a "last one for the road" so-to-speak.

As time marched on, more and more of those on board did realize that the ship was going to sink, hence the flood of steerage on the boat deck and the scramble for LBs 13-16 and Cs.A/B. I'm pretty sure that Gouguin wasn't, or wouldn't have been, the only person on board to have snorted something before the end to numb his senses. He was merely the one who had become famous for having done so.

As for whether or not he actually got drunk, evidence exists to suggest that he had been drinking but not as much as previously believed.

Also consider that, although the ship was sinking, many probably thought that they weren't necessarily going to die, as, I'm sure that they were aware that anything could happen, especially on a sinking ship, so their chances were possible that they might have survived.

Others, though knew, even made no attempt for rescue: Thomas Andrews, Capt. Smith, CO Wilde, 1O Murdoch, William Stead, just to name a few. The last, it is said, sat reading a book in the smoking room up till the end.

Another suggestion is that 6O Moody was likely intended to be cast off in C.A with the ship's documents, but it didn't quite turn out that way. This is one example of one person considered to survive who didn't.

Again, drinking while on a sinking ship would be a given, so I wouldn't be surprised to read that several others had also attempted to embalm themselves before the end.

Just my opinion.
 
Jul 9, 2000
58,665
880
563
Easley South Carolina
>>But anyone on that ship in that situation. Do you think they may have realized their fate and decided to have a few drinks before the end.<<

I don't see any reason why not. The historical record is silent on this for the most part, but I knew if I had no chance, I'd at least sample some of the better lables.

What would they do about it?

Kill me?
 
Jun 12, 2004
2,131
13
233
Mike-

quote:

What would they do about it?

Kill me?

If "they" weren't busy attempting to lower life boats are conducting other rescue procedures, chances are "they'd" probably be drinking right along with you, ;) hehe.​
 
Feb 21, 2005
671
7
183
I can't help but think that I would, as Mike said, try out some of the "better lables".

Especially if I were one of those aware of the impending doom with all the lifeboats gone.

Granted, none of us know exactly how we would act, and lord willing we never will; but I would think I'd rather sit down in a lounge with a few fellow passengers and well...discuss life/death, and drink myself blind. I would hope that getting a little "tanked" would either make your meeting with death/freezing water a bit less painful.

But, never been in that situation and I pray I never will be. But I think drinking would be my option if I'd found out all lifeboats are gone and there's nothing to stop you from going into frigid sea.
 

Sam Brannigan

Member
Dec 20, 2000
904
15
263
So which of those better labels would I grab?

As for Bordeaux Red (Claret), I have seen two wines apparently listed on the Titanic here. I can't be sure if this information is correct or verifiable, but if these wines were aboard I would decant them just as the iceberg was struck in time for drinking by 1.40am:

http://www.euronet.nl/users/keesree/food.htm#Winelist

I assume the "Chateau Camponac, Medoc" is a misprint. There is a Chateau of this name in the lesser Cotes de Bourg, but I reckon it was Brane-Cantenac which along with the Ch. Rauzan Segla are still among the top 30 or so Chateaux out of 12,000 in Bordeaux.

As for the vintage (year) to drink, I would assume the Titanic's sommeliers (wine waiters) would have stocked wines with a bit of bottle age, to show them at their best. The legendary 1900 vintage, which is still drinking well today in some cases would have just been opening up in 1912.

Michael Broadbent, the greatest living authority on vintage wine rated the Rauzan-Segla 1900 (now Rausan-Segla)as a five star wine (out of five) as recently as 2001, and described the four star Brane Cantenac as "autumnal, sweet, soft, delicate" as recently as 1985.

As for the Sauterne (sic) at £4.00 a bottle ($1.00), chances are it was the legendary Chateau d'Yquem, the world's greatest dessert wine. If it was the 1893, you are talking about a still legendary vintage (described by Broadbent in 1995 as having "incredible power, almost pungent, in perfect condition"), but I like to think it was the 1900 - a bottle of which I have in stock in my shop at the moment. Cost? £4,500($9,000). In 1912 it would still have been a deep gold colour, now it is deep and dark.

With regard to Champagne, the vintages listed,1898 and 1900, were not great. I would have been sniffing around for an 1892 or 1899, two remarkable vintages. Broadbent tasted the 1892 Perrier Jouet in 1994 and rated it four stars.

The one Burgundy mentioned, from Volnay would offer raspberry crumble, truffles and violet aromas - delicious - can imagine old Stead sitting with a glass as the end neared. 1906 would be young but excellent. Perhaps the 1898, or if feeling particularly pessimistic, the 1865 - a true legend.

Finally - Port. I assume the "Old Matured" is what we today describe as "Vintage". This would need to be at least 10 years old for the nuances to begin to emerge, so the 1900, 1896 or 1884 would have been fantastic, as for the fine old tawny - this would be a single vintage port aged in oak barrels for up to 30 years. Lush!

If I'm still about on the night of April 14th 2012, I intend to sip a port from the stunning 1912 vintage, perhaps Ferreira or Taylors, while I watch "A Night to Remember". It will set me back over £500, but I'm saving already!
 

Bob Godfrey

Member
Nov 22, 2002
6,043
107
333
UK
Sam, from a quick look that link does appear to have the authentic White Star wine list (typos excepted), but the prices quoted are rubbish - in many if not all cases the transcriber has assumed that eg 4/- meant 4 pounds rather than 4 shillings! The most expensive drop for a thirsty Brannigan out to get his money's worth on sinking night would have been the Brandy Liquers (Hine or Frapin) at 15 bob a bottle, closely followed by the ten-year-old Clicquot champers at 14/-.

In the light of your tagline, Sam, I hope you'll be doing your best on the night of April 14th 2012 to also consume 2000 pounds of jam, greengage.
:)
 
Feb 21, 2005
671
7
183
Heh, now that you brought up the night of 4-15-2012, I think I'll do something similar. Especially since I won't be able to afford a trip out the wreck site as I had originally planned. I'll probably use the Titanic Cookbook you see around, 'Last Dinner' I believe it's called, make myself a Sunday dinner meal, kick back with a brandy and cigar afterward and watch ANTR. Sounds like a good evening to me.
 
Feb 21, 2005
671
7
183
Oh, one other question, where was the bar on the Titanic? Or did stewards walk around with trays serving people at their tables? I ask this both during the pre-iceberg stage and the sinking stage. I doubt many stewards would concern themselves with drinking passengers with chaos going all around them.

Just another thought/question.

THanks!
 

Bob Godfrey

Member
Nov 22, 2002
6,043
107
333
UK
The 'bars' were places for the storage and preparation, not the consumption of drinks. Passengers could call a steward in most locations, place their order and their drinks would be delivered on a tray. And payment would be expected at that time, unless a whole bottle was ordered, in which case it went onto their wine bill for settlement at the end of the voyage. In normal circumstances, stewards didn't circulate with trays of drinks and certainly didn't offer them free of extra charge. As far as I know, after the 'bars' closed as normal on the evening of the 14th they stayed closed.
 
Jun 12, 2004
2,131
13
233
And what would have happened if a host of doomed gents requiring a last bottle decided to help themselves and were observed doing so? Please don't say they'd be arrested and/or detained. I'm sure that the ship's crew--including stewards--had more important concerns in the later part of that evening.

Yes, it might have been considered stealing, BUT the circumstances were extraordinary and extenuating to say the least. Even many of the stewards and other staff were aware of the fact that very soon all of that delectable bubbly, not to mention the wine, would soon be forever resting at the bottom of the ocean.

I only say this because the shipping line would lose out on the bottle of (?) whether I drink it or not, and the staff, I'm sure, would know this. Why the need to pay for it? The money would be going to the bottom as well.

Who's to say that a number of the stewards themselves wouldn't have joined in--or hadn't? Hell, the chief baker himself was noticed with a bottle (although, as said, he didn't consume as much as originally believed).
 
Jul 9, 2000
58,665
880
563
Easley South Carolina
>>Please don't say they'd be arrested and/or detained.<<

There might have been objections early on but I don't think they would have lasted long once the guy with the keys realized just how much trouble the ship was in. He might have been competing with the rest of the pack.

Regarding the vintages mentioned, I regret that I don't have the ££££££'s for any of the lables from 1912 still extant, so I'll have to wait on the French 2003 vintages for the champagnes to come out. The Bordeauxs have been consistantly good. Hell, even the Henri Abele just might be drinkable!
 

Sam Brannigan

Member
Dec 20, 2000
904
15
263
"Regarding the vintages mentioned, I regret that I don't have the ££££££'s for any of the lables from 1912 still extant, so I'll have to wait on the French 2003 vintages for the champagnes to come out."

Michael, through the wonders of the web I've noticed that you have a pretty good wine merchant close to you in Greenville, Total Wine & More. The Champagne vintage you really want to drink in 2012 is the incredible 1996, already regarded by many as the best of the 20th century.

Total Wine & More currently list the Taittinger Brut Millesime at $56.99 - a total bargain (would cost twice that in the UK). (Hope these people give me commission!). If you can afford to go a bit more go for the Bollinger Grande Annee or Taittinger Comptes from the same year.

Bordeaux 2003's are excellent - but IMHO only from the right bank, St Emilion, Pomerol etc. The left bank wines (Pauillac, Margaux I've found to be a tad too hot and lacking acidity. If you come across any 2000's they should be drinking nicely come the night.

For a true authentic experience on April 14th 1912, how about a nip of Hine 1898 Grande Champagne Cognac - a snip at just under £1800 a bottle, Cockburns Vintage Port 1896 at just under £1,900 or Serafim Cabral Vintage Tawny Port 1871 at just under £1500 - all possible candidates for the Maiden Voyage. Multiply prices by two for US dollar price. The phrase "cheaper to lower the Atlantic" springs to mind!
lame.gif
.

Bob - I'll have 2200lbs of coffee to hand for the morning after!

If the Titanic had the following legends stocked this would have been what I was tasting (knocking back) as she sank:

1847 Chateau d'Yquem
1865 Lafite
1865 Kirwan
1870 Lafite
1870 Mouton Rothschild
1900 Margaux

No insulation from hypothermia, but talk about going to heaven!
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Bob Godfrey

Member
Nov 22, 2002
6,043
107
333
UK
Harold Steptoe: 'ere, Dad, what d'ya think we ought to 'ave with the fish and chips?
The 'ock, or the Pwilly-Foos?
Albert Steptoe: I don't mind. Any colour'll do me.
 

Ben Holme

Member
Feb 11, 2001
714
6
183
Hi Matthew,

"Do you (any of you) think that maybe some people did decide to go ahead and catch a final "buzz" once they realized there was no chance of survival."

Dr. O'Loughlin is a possibility. Charles Joughin recalled meeting and talking to him when he went to retrieve the booze. It is not clear whether or not the old doc was there for the same purpose, but I wouldn't be surprised.

Best regards,
Ben
 
Jul 9, 2000
58,665
880
563
Easley South Carolina
>>Total Wine & More.<<

I know about it and I've done business with them several times. I may give the place a lookover tomorrow for my Christmas and New Year champagnes. The problem is that this place is located along Woodruff Road which is absolutely notorious for traffic problems this time of year.

I've a few other sources I can go to including...believe it or not...a Redball right in my hometown which just happens to be owned by a pair of wine connoisseurs.

>>The Champagne vintage you really want to drink in 2012 is the incredible 1996, already regarded by many as the best of the 20th century.<<

I'll keep an eye out for it. I've had a few reds from the same year that were pretty good, but they're getting kind of tough to find now.
 
Jun 12, 2004
2,131
13
233
Actually, I am a Cabernet man myself, especially Sauvignon. Unless I'm eating fish, during which time I'll be savoring a delectable white wine, I will definitely be enjoying this. As for scenarios, a sinking is no exception.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Similar threads

Similar threads