You don’t have to be a wine aficionado–or break the bank–when it comes to choosing wine for your wedding day. Start by following these seven tips to make the perfect selections for the big day.
1. Choose your menu first. You’ll want the wines at your wedding to complement the dishes you’ll be serving, so it’s best to nail down your menu before you start choosing the wines.
2. Consider the season. The season you’re getting married in has a definite impact on the wines you’ll serve. Brisk white wines (Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris/Grigio, Riesling), dry rosés and light- to medium reds (Pinot Noir, Beaujolais, Italian Valpolicella, Spanish Rioja) work better for warm-weather weddings because they’re lighter and offer more refreshment. For winter and fall weddings, wines with more weight, like Chardonnay, Merlot and Syrah, work better with cooler temperatures and heavier foods.
3. Think about timing. Guests tend to drink less at daytime weddings, and probably also don’t indulge as much if you’re having your event on a Sunday evening and many people will have to go to work the next day. Take this into consideration if you are supplying your own alcohol for the wedding.
4. Ask for advice. Most caterers will be able to help you select wines based on taste, budget and the menu. If you live near wineries, you can also visit a few to get an idea on what you like.
5. Hold a tasting. Buy several wines in your price range and invite family and friends over for an impromptu tasting to help you decide which ones you like best.
6. Don’t get caught up in price. Much like skincare products, a pricey bottle of wine doesn’t necessarily mean it’s good. So don’t feel like you need to spend a fortune to impress your guests.
7. Be sure you have enough. If you figure a half-bottle per person, which is about three glasses, you should be fine. While all guests won’t drink that much, it’s better to have too much than too little.