Wine has been served in weddings since time in memorial but how do you know when to serve what?
Here are some aspects to consider when selecting the wine for your wedding reception. Matching wine with food is almost impossible so in this case opt for a light, well balanced and easy to drink wine both as red and white. For a more formal and plated meal, ask the advice of your caterer or your wine supplier and simply try the wines with some of the food yourself!
What kind of wine do they like? How about your friends and family? Do they prefer red, white, rose, sparkling, or a dessert wine? Would your guests enjoy one or two really nice glasses of wine to sip as they socialize? Or is wine not that important to your guests?
Generally in Kenya, we have a sweeter taste for wines; so wines with a fruity and not too dry taste are normally a safe choice.
Time of day
Are you having a lunch or evening reception? People prefer to drink less at an afternoon wedding than an evening affair and they also prefer lighter wine. A good alternative for a lunch reception could be a nicely chilled rose wine. Some of the wines to look out for are South African wines. For an evening reception a choice of white wine and red wine is nearly a must.
If you intend to pair wine with food, you may want to ask yourself, are you having a buffet menu or a sit down and more formal lunch? A buffet offers several choices of food hence matching wine with the food is almost impossible. In this case opt for a light, well balanced and easy to drink wine both as red and white. For a more formal and plated meal, ask the advice of your caterer or your wine supplier and simply try the wines with some of the food yourself.
What’s your budget?
Most of us do not have an unlimited budget to spend on wine, and looking at cost is inevitable. So several options are available to you:
Ask for a wine package: generally for lunch, quantities of wine required can be calculated by 2 glasses of wine per person, sp approx ¼ ltr per person. If you have 100 guests you will need 25 bottles of wine. For a plated dinner, one should count at least 1 bottle of white wine 75cl for 4 people and 1 bottle of red wine 75cl for 3 people. These proportions can be reduced or increased depending on your type of guests as well as the drink selection you will offer.
For a drinks reception, count a maximum of 1 glass of wine per person especially if other drinks like beer, juices and soft drinks are also be available, if you ask for a maximum number of bottles, then you might want to consider a cash bar.
If the caterer or the hotel allows it, look into bringing your own wine bought from your reliable supplier, though be ready to pay for corkage (a charge paid per bottle up to kshs1000).
Discuss with your supplier to have your wines on sale and return basis, this means that if not all the wine is drunk, you will be able to return the unopened bottles to your supplier only make sure that the labels are not damaged.
By Phillipe Cauviere
Director-WWW Bar and Shop Ltd