Wine flows freely in “Cougar Town”

Friday, Jan 14, 2011

The characters on “Cougar Town” drink wine. A lot of wine. Often.The series’ central character, Jules (Courteney Cox) drinks wine out of an enormous goblet she calls Big Carl. A really big goblet. Big Carl holds a bottle-and-a-half of wine.

“And she drinks maybe five or six in one show,” joked executive producer Bill Lawrence.But this is the world of TV. Nobody is headed for the Betty Ford Center.

“She’s going to continue to drink and live a very successful life being an alcoholic, but manageable,” Cox joked. “There is no rehab in sight or anything.”

Cox, who’s also one of the show’s executive producers, and Lawrence quite clearly get along extremely well. They also quite clearly disagree on the whole wine-drinking thing.

“I don’t think we exaggerate the amount of wine-drinking that adults do in America by that much. I think maybe by that much, at most,” said Lawrence, holding his fingers an inch apart.

“I think that we do,” Cox disagreed.

Lawrence sort of blamed Cox for her character’s drinking. Well, more than sort of.

“I love getting to know actors and seeing what their real personalities are like and stealing from them,” he said. “And one of the first things that I noticed when I met Courteney Cox is she pours herself a healthy glass of wine. She pours herself, like, the type that you could do wrist curls with.”

Cox was just shaking her head “no” the whole time.

If the drinking levels are fictional, the drinks are not. If you watch “Cougar Town” closely, you’ll see that those bottles of wine are real wine bottles. With real labels. Not something made up by the art department.

“You recognize labels of wine that also happen to be in my house now in big giant free crates,” Lawrence said. “That’s funny because it’s a little true.”