Sip in Style with New ‘Downton Abbey’ Wines

10/23/2013 at 01:57 PM ET

Downtown Abbey Wines
Courtesy Downton Abbey Wines

Have you ever wanted to make a toast with the Crawleys? Perhaps sip some wine with Lady Mary while gossiping in the library? Or taste-test the pairings with Mr. Carson before dinner?

Well hold on to your knickers, because now you can!

To celebrate season 4 of the hit-British drama (which returns to PBS’s Masterpiece in January 2014), Grands Vins de Bordeaux winery debuts a duo of Downton Abbey Wines: a “Blanc” white wine and a “Claret” red wine.

Beyond the Downton name on the label, the wines have a true connection to the show: They’re made from grapes grown on the same vines and from the same soil in the Bordeaux region of France as the era depicted in Downton Abbey. “We truly believe the Crawley Family would have been proud to serve [them] at their table,” co-creator William Zysblat says in a statement.

This isn’t the first series to offer a line of branded beverages: there are Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones beers, True Blood orange sodas and, hey, even E.L. James released a collection of Fifty Shades of Grey-inspired wines.

So whether you want to recreate your own Downton Abbey dinner party or indulge in a treat while catching up on all the saucy storylines, you can order them for $15 at or from select retailers beginning November 1.

—Karen J. Quan

FILED UNDER: Food , Wine

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms


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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

“What’s limiting American designers is that we’re afraid to do something different,” says Berliner, 32, a Hungarian émigré who fled with her family to the U.S. in 1956. Agi thought up the gimmick in London while marveling at the way plastics were being employed by designers of punk fashion. In her L.A. office, where she designs for La Parisienne junior sportswear, Agi spent five days on the phone and six weeks testing to come up with the right plastic.

Agi herself tried out the French-cut jeans with the zipper in front, and quickly found several problems: Some plastics tore away from stitching, others wouldn’t bend and all fogged with perspiration. The ideal material proved to be a vinyl supplied by a bookbinder. The steam was eliminated with a series of vents behind the knees and in the crotch. “They’re no hotter than polyester pants,” claims Agi, “and if you wear them with tights, they won’t stick to your legs.”

Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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You may find yourself limited to long shots until you can get those passing movements working. Use at least 4-5 upgraded mobs against enemy buildings and vehicles. This leaves even the most deadly ground formation helpless in the face of heavily armored and well armed tactical aircraft.

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