For Obama, even wine lists are state secrets

Of all the things to keep secret about British Prime Minister David Cameron’s visit to the White House, what kind of wines will be served at the state dinner in his honor on Wednesday might not seem to be among them.

But the menu for the swank event—an “America’s Backyard”-themed soirée under a gala tent on the South Lawn of the president’s mansion—discloses only that “an American wine will be paired with each course.”

As Bloomberg News reported on Tuesday , that’s probably not by accident: After the dinner honoring Chinese President Hu Jintao last year, the Obama White House ended the practice of listing the name, year and appellation of wines served at such functions. During the Hu event, guests drank a 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon that ran about $115 a bottle but sold for as much as $399 after it was featured on the dinner list, according to Bloomberg News.

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