Choosing the right wines and drinks for your wedding, whether a full scale sit-down meal for hundreds, or a simple party with family and close friends, can be a major headache. As with so many other aspects of planning your wedding, the best thing to do is to take advice from professionals in this area. Banqueting rooms, hotels and catering companies should all be able to offer adequate wine lists and bar facilities to fit your budget. Inreasingly, however, receptions are being held at home, in a marquee, or in other venues where there are no such facilities. In this case, you can enlist the help of a local Off Licence or Wine Merchant, who can provide all the wines, beers and spirits you require, plus portable bars, glasses and staff.
Even if you are having caterers in, or going to an established banqueting room, you may have the option of providing your own drinks and, even with a corkage charge, the savings can be substantial.
The tradition, as guests gather for the reception, is to offer sherry or champagne, or both – don’t forget the non-drinkers (young ones or drivers) so offer orange juice or mineral water too. With the meal, select red wine with meat or white wine with fish or poultry – visit a good wine merchant who has a wide range and they should be only too pleased to offer advice.
For the toast, champagne is the tradition, but the choice of ‘sparklers’ from other areas of France, Spain, Italy, Australia, Germany etc is now very good and great savings may be made by using one of these in prefernce to ‘the real thing’. Avoid the embarrassment of running out, or the expense of over-buying – specialist wine merchants will usually offer you a sale or return facility as well as providing all the correct glasses, plus coolers and gas facilities for draught beer.
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