Wedding Wines: Everything a Bride Need to Know!

Wedding Wine Table Setting

Selecting wedding wines for your chic wedding can be a daunting task if you are not a wine connoisseur. But don’t worry! My friends over at Firstleaf Wine Club have shared some of their expert tips on choosing the perfect wedding wine. Isn’t that awesome?

So we will take it from the top by: 

  1. First, take a look at what makes a good wine.
  2. Then we will look at how to choose the perfect wine for your wedding. 
  3. I will also dig deep into wedding wine pairing. 
  4. How to determine how much wedding wine you will need.
  5. Then we will wrap it up with some popular wedding wines.

How does that sound?

What Makes an Excellent Wedding Wine?

Ok! If you are like me, you love wine, but you are not a connoisseur of wine. So what is a bride supposed to do when deciding on wedding wines? According to the folks over at Firstleaf, a wine club that specialized in wines is to first know what makes a good wedding wine.

No! It’s not about the color, region, or brand. What makes an excellent wedding wine really comes down to pairing and price. A superb wedding wine will go well with your meal and or hors D’oeuvre at cocktail hour. Furthermore, it should be within your wedding budget. 

There are some popular wedding wines that we will get into a little bit. But for now, just know that a good wedding wine will go well with the food at your wedding, and it doesn’t have to break the bank.

Choosing The Perfect Wedding Wine

When it comes to picking a wine for dinner at home or at a restaurant, it may be an easy task! Who cares, right? I mean, you either like it, love it, or hate it. Either way, the risk is minimal because it only pertains to you and your family and perhaps a few close friends. You can unabashedly decide to never buy that brand again, or you may want to buy a case or two.

Picking the perfect wedding wine is a little more involved than picking a wine for dinner at home. For big weddings, wine novices and experts may not be savvy with serving wines to hundreds of guests. 

Everything from how many bottles, parings, and temperature should be considered before choosing your perfect wedding wines. Follow these tips for choosing your wedding wines:

Choose Wines That Are Meaningful To You And Your Significant Other

I have photographed many weddings where the wedding wine was chosen because it means something to the bride and groom. For example, they may have gotten engaged at the vineyard that produced that particular wine they both enjoyed. Or they may have some other connection to the brand that means a lot to their love story. In either case, choosing a wedding wine that you both enjoyed and that has a meaning to your love story is a great way to choose your wedding wine.

Forget Pairing By The Season Here in South Florida

In general, if your wedding is in the fall or the winter months, you would consider a bold red like syrah or tempranillo for warming up your guest. 

The spring and summer months are synonymous with white wines. 

Here in South Florida, where it gets sweltering hot during the summer months and is relatively warm the rest of the year, consider a wedding wine that can be chilled. Still, it really comes down to preferences. 

I love a good red wine regardless of the season or the pairing. I know for sure that I don’t like my red wine chill. If I have to have a chill wine, it has to be a white wine. I lived in California for many years. I have never had a glass of chilled red wine until I moved to Miami, Florida.

The bottom line is, think less seasonally! Most of your guests will want to drink what they like whenever they want. It doesn’t matter the season as long as it goes well with your menu. 

Consider Pairing Your Wedding Wine By Your Wedding Theme

According to the experts from Fistleaf, if your food is part of your wedding theme, your wedding wine should also be part of your theme. If you are planning a beach wedding theme, with lots of fresh fruit and succulent seafood on the menu, consider serving wines with a tropical flare such as chardonnay or sauvignon blanc.

Wedding Wine Pairing By Food

Recommended Wedding Wines Pairings

A glass of wine on its own can be a delight. The flavors, aroma, and textures in an excellent glass of wine can enhance an evening or afternoon drink before a meal. However, when a good bottle of wine is paired with the right food, it can open up your palate to interact with taste and textures in a whole new way.

Because our palates are unique to us, wedding wine paring can be very difficult. Nevertheless, a great wine appropriately paired can introduce you to an entirely new side of your favorite food. The best way to learn is by trial and error. However, check out these recommended wedding wine pairings:

  1. Chicken – depending on the flavor of the chicken dish. For a chicken dish with tomato sauce, consider a red wine. If you are serving dark meat, consider a bolder taste like chardonnay. For white meat, a wine with a lighter flavor such as pinot grigio goes well.  
  2. Beef – for all the beef lovers, consider going with a full-flavored wine to match the beef’s deep intense flavor. A wine like Cabernet sauvignon is perfect for pairing with beef.
  3. Fish & seafood – now we all know that fish and seafood pears best with white wine, right? Or so we think. According to the experts at Firstleaf, “all fish are not created equal, and the old white wine with a fish rule isn’t necessarily one to follow.” Fatty fish like salmon and mahi-mahi pairs well with a light red wine, while more delicate fish such as cod and halibut is better with white wine.  
  4. Pork – the other white meat required middle of the road kind of paring. You don’t want heavy reds or too light whites for pork dishes. Something like a merlot should be considered for fattier cuts of pork. For a leaner cut of pork, try something like a pinot grigio.
  5. Vegetables – for a dish of root vegetables such as carrots, squash, potatoes, or bean stew, go with a bold red like a cabernet sauvignon, merlot, or syrah. Here in Miami, with our year-round tropical weather, consider white wines.

How Much Wine Will You Need For Your Wedding?

How Many Wedding Wines to Buy Calculator Chart

The amount of wedding wine you will need to buy for your wedding really depends on a few things:  

  1. The pour – if your bartenders and waitstaff serve the standard five ounces per drink, you will need more wine than if they serve 3 ounces per glass. According to The Knot, a top wedding planning website, a standard pour is welcome at a bar. Still, at your wedding, you want to reduce the pour to keep the flavor and temperature in check.
  2. Reception time – people tend to drink less earlier in the day than they do later on. If your reception is earlier in the day, you can anticipate less wine will be needed.
  3. Length of the reception – how long your reception is will affect the amount of wine you will need. For example, a 5-hour reception will require more wine than 3 hours.
  4. Other drinks been served – not all your guests will want to drink wine. Having another alcohol option such as bear or mixed drinks could reduce the amount of wine you need to buy.
  5. Guest count – the number of guests in attendance will affect the quantity of wedding wine needed.  
  6. Non-alcohol drinkers – knowing your guest alcoholic preferences can also help you determine how much wine to buy. Some of your guests may be none alcoholic drinkers, and you will need to know this to estimate how many wedding wines to get.

To put it all together, the standard bottle of wine has 25 fluid ounces, which works out to 5 standard servings at 5 ounces and approximately 8 wedding servings at 3 ounces. You can expect to serve 2 drinks to each guest for the first hour and then one drink for every hour after that. 

So if you have 50 guests in attendance, for a 4-hour reception, you will serve 100 drinks in the first hour and 50 drinks per hour for the remaining 3 hours. The total amount of estimated drinks for the four hours and 50 guests will be 250 drinks. 

Since we know that each bottle of wine has 8 drinks, we have to divide the estimated number of drinks served by the 8 drinks – 250/8 = 31.25. You will need 31.25 or 32 bottles of wedding wine. Easy-peasy, yes? Don’t worry. Your bartender will be happy to help you with this!

Popular Wedding Wines

Your wedding is a once in a lifetime event. It should be celebrated in a style that reflects you and your love personality. There is really no right and wrong wedding wines. What is most important is that you enjoyed it. 

I really don’t like white wine, and it doesn’t matter what food I’m eating. I will choose a red over a white for a fish dinner in a minute. So make your wedding wine uniquely you! If you would like to try some popular wedding wine, check out these wines:

Reds – pino noir, rose and cabernet sauvignon.  

Whites  – chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, and pinot grigio.

Popular sparkles – champagne, sparkling rose, and prosecco.

There you have it! What more could you possibly want to know about wedding wine? Ha-ha! I hope you have learned a lot from this post. Thanks to Firstlight for sharing their beautiful graphics.

Have questions? Let’s connect here.

If you like this post, you may also be interested in these other posts:

You’ve Chosen Your Wedding Venue, What Next?

5 Reasons to Consider Destination Weddings in Miami Florida

First Look Wedding Photos | What Every Bride Need to Know

The Ultimate Wedding Guide For Planning Your Dream Wedding!

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