On average, over 44,000 weddings take place every weekend. For anyone that’s ever been to a wedding, you’ll know that the general jubilation pairs hand-in-hand with alcohol. There is a great deal of alcohol on the market though, whether it’s beer, wine, or liquor (spirits). When planning a wedding, it is well known that alcohol is a centerpiece of the ceremonies — a wedding with an open bar can lead to a catering bill with nearly 20% to 25% of the cost dedicated to alcohol. Along with weddings, the total alcohol beverage sales in the U.S. accumulates to over $200 billion a year, so it’s a massive industry with a large consumption base. In an attempt to figure out just what your “liquor for wedding” needs are, there is an importance in knowing just what kind of audience you are catering to.
If you’re trying to keep the wedding ceremony classy and “sippable” — centered on a casual, sophisticated aesthetic with hearty, strong drinks — then you might want to lean towards liquors. Deciding just what you want to be on your “liquor for wedding” list can be prove difficult, considering there are so many varieties to choose from. But it is likely that you’ll please almost anyone with what you end up choosing, since there are nearly 98 million consumers of spirits in the U.S.. If you’re looking for warmth, consider grabbing a a few bottles of whiskey; if you want fun, tequila shots between the bridesmaids and groomsmen might add some excitement; if you want relaxation, consider a bottle of vodka and a bottle of cranberry juice for mixing.
Types of Beer
The Delaware craft beer scene has been burgeoning within the past few years, especially across the U.S., with the number of operating breweries in the U.S. increasing by 15% in 2015, totaling up to 4,269 breweries. While there are a great deal of beers to choose from in the U.S., it will be more exciting to stock your wedding with beer brewed by a local, Delaware-based microbrewery: a brewery that produces less than 15,000 barrels of beer per year (so, not Coors Light, Budweiser, or Corona). Talk to an employee at a liquor store or a bartender at a local craft beer brewery — they’ll have the best know-how regarding what beer would best fit your “liquor for wedding” needs. One bit of advice, unless your wedding is set in the heart of winter, stay away from loading up on any heavy, thick stouts. A simple session-IPA or crisp lager might work best for that relaxed, sipping atmosphere found at most wedding tables.
Types of Wine
If you have a young crowd at a wedding — think millennials — then wine might just be first addition to your “liquor for wedding” list. In 2015 alone, millennials consumed almost 160 million cases of wine (that’s almost 42 percent of all wine sold in the U.S.!), and it’s been further shown that millennials, on average, drink a whole glass more than Gen Xers of baby boomers. However, like beer and spirits, deciding just what wines to pick for your “liquor for wedding” list can prove to be overwhelming. To help you in deciding, consider some of the top wines, as shown in order of popularity: Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Grigio, Merlot, and Pinot Noir. While Chardonnay is a white wine, most red wines tend to sell better than white. Your best option is to venture into a wine store, talk with one of the attendants, and ask for specific pairings dependent upon the meals being served at your wedding. A usual pairing to keep in mind is that red wine usually pairs well with the main course while white wine works well as a dessert wine.
When planning your wedding, it is always a smart decision to meet with a professional. Planning your “liquor for wedding” list is no different. Talk to some of your guests, ask them about their preferences regarding craft beer, wine and spirits, and then venture into a local liquor store and ask for recommendations. Soon enough, you’ll have all the alcohol you’ll need to fuel a lively, invigorating wedding.