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Choosing the Right Wine & Drinks for Your Wedding

From our friends at National Wine Review:

Wine is essential to most wedding events – from bridal shower to rehearsal dinner to reception. Whether to serve wine at your wedding events is rarely in question; rather, the question is how you go about planning and carrying out your wine service in a way that delights you, as a couple, as well as your guests and creates a memorable experience for everyone.


Here are some ideas that may help you make quite the splash – red, white, pink or bubbly – at your nuptials.



Make it Personal


Nothing falls flatter than run-of-the-mill wine at a wedding event. Avoid, if you can, serving wines that are commonplace in the supermarket. Instead, select and serve wines that have some personal significance and memorability for you, the wedding couple.


If you appreciate wine, especially as a couple, have traveled to wine country together or have special wine discoveries or favorites, select and serve wines that reflect your personal experiences. If you have a favorite winery or two, for instance, source your wines directly from those wineries. “Direct-to-Consumer” wine shipping within the United States – the ability to order wines directly from the winery and have them delivered to your door – makes it easy to do this, and if you happen to be a “club” member of any given winery you are likely to receive some helpful discounts on wine and shipping costs.


Another option is to personalize your wines with customized labels that commemorate your wedding. There are a number of wineries around the DMV and across the country, as well as scores of online wine retailers, that offer “private label” wines for special events. If this is something you would like to pursue, first ask your favorite winery if they offer private labels. If not, Google will lead you to many options to choose from. While private label wines would provide a memorable touch to your wedding events, it is a costly option to consider only if your budget allows.


Make it Local


We in Virginia enjoy an abundance of wineries from which you can “locally source” wines for your wedding events or where you can actually hold your wedding events. Many Virginia wineries, from just outside of the Beltway and beyond, offer wedding venues in picturesque settings ripe for lavish wedding celebrations and, of course, photos. Some offer personalized wine labels, as well.


More recent to the local wedding venue scene are two wineries in Washington, D.C. One is City Winery (citywinery.com) on New York Avenue in Northeast D.C.; and the other is District Winery (districtwinery.com) in the The Yards neighborhood along the Southeast waterfront. Both establishments offer wedding facilities and services as well as personalized wine labels.


Make it Intimate


If you plan to hold any of your wedding events at home or another private location and want wine service, consider hiring a “mobile wine bar.” One such service is Alexandria’s own VinoBLU Wine Bar (see photo, above), established and operated by fellow Alexandrian and wine specialist Wakeya Henry. VinoBLU offers full wine service for weddings and other special events and will set up a wine bar wherever you may like, indoors or out, with wine servers on staff. VinoBLU will select and source wines based on your preferences and can provide walk-around charcuterie and/or dessert service. VinoBLU serves the entire DMV Metropolitan area. (barvinoblu.com; winebar@vinoblu.org; 703-244-5965).


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