Picking the perfect wine for your wedding

Much like wedding planning, selecting the perfect wine for your reception is influenced heavily by your taste. So while you may think the menu or season always informs what is in your glass, we are delighted to report that if you love reds, whites or rosés, all three are always in fashion.Oenophiles don’t have any problem selecting their favourite wines for dinner parties–but on a bigger, wedding reception scale, wine experts and beginners alike may not know the intricacies of serving vino for hundreds of guests. We would like to take the opportunity to thank Phil Harris from The Cardiff Wedding Photographer for providing the images for this blog.

From menu and temperature pairings into the much-debated question of the number of bottles to purchase, follow these expert ideas to pulling off a perfect pour with each glass. But full disclosure: you must always select varietals you and your fiancé like, because wine may say something about you–even better if it is a part of your love story.

Traditionally, the premise is that a fall or winter wedding automatically signifies red wine, much like a spring or summer party is identical to white wine. But actually, it doesn’t matter what time of year it’s, just so long as it fits in with your menu. “Most individuals want to drink what they like whenever they need to, which demonstrates why rosé has sprung from a springtime sipper to a year-round Showstopper,” says Anthony Giglio, wine executive at The Centurion Lounge. “People like how it connects white and red as a half way house in between.”You don’t need a seasoned sommelier to suggest great wine and food pairings; it’s as simple as understanding that wines and dishes that carry similar flavours will complement each other. Eater Drinks editor Kat Odell suggests the following pairings:

Chicken – A red or white that’s on the medium to the lighter side is a safe bet.

Fish – Greek wines or other lighters, mineral-y whites go well with seafood.

Beef – A dominant Grenache or pinot noir (both reds) complements steak.

Pork – Go for a bolder white with pork, like a white Burgundy.In general, choosing reliable, trustworthy wines which can be paired with various dishes will provide you one less headache, and your visitors will enjoy their meals even more.

“A bottle of white, a bottle of red, maybe a bottle of rosé instead” is not just verses from a Billy Joel song! They are also words to live by as you pick the wines you’ll serve at the party (save the rosé, which you might choose to swap for a bubbly beverage). “You don’t need to make it too complex,” says Gillian Sciaretta, associate examining coordinator at Wine Spectator. “Just choosing a white, red and sparkling is a fantastic way to go; people who have very distinct inclinations will still enjoy the wine.” To keep it simple, select a white wine that’s light and stimulating (similar to a sauvignon blanc or even a pinot grigio), and stick with a red that’s a little bit on the cool and fruity side (such as a pinot noir) since both can go well with various food.

Then decide on a mild champagne or prosecco to hit the bubbly note. “As long as the wines provide pleasant flavours that attract a large crowd, you should be good to go,” Sciarretta states. “People are always just pleased to have a great glass of wine in their hand”Even when you have your wedding reception in addition to a snowy mountain in the dead of winter, serve all your wine cold–which goes for red too. “Whites and sparkling ought to be served on ice.

Even reds–particularly lighter ones–can benefit from 30 minutes in the fridge before service,” says Nicholas Jackson, Sotheby’s wine buyer. “While the wine that’s too cold can warm up, hot wine is a loss from the start.” Sciaretta agrees that temperature control is essential, remarking that red wine should be held at 55 degrees and white wine around the high 40s. (If the bottle doesn’t need to breathe, keep it unopened until the last second, so the flavour isn’t wasted.)

If you’re looking for some good deals on wine for your wedding day we recommend Majestic Wines or Berry Bros, both have a superb collection of wines at a range of price points perfect for your big day!