Serving Craft Beer at Your Wedding: Tips For The Perfect Pairings
Your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life. It’s a time to celebrate love, family, and friends. But with so many delicious food and drink options, it can be difficult for it to accurately represent yourselves as a couple unless the day is about what you love. If either the groom or the father of the bride is a beer lover, then how about serving craft beer at your wedding as a special touch?
We spoke to the experts at Rudgate Brewery who supply casks, kegs or bottles for your big day and offer a try before you buy at the brewery. And you can even have a specially made wedding brew and have spare bottles as wedding favours. So here are some tips to make sure you get it right to keep that wedding party in full flow.
Serving craft beer at your wedding is easy, you just need to choose the right brews. We’d always recommend you visit local breweries like Rudgate that specialise in wedding beers to sample their wares, just to make sure you don’t pick a bad one.
If you have a variety of different tastes among your guests, it’s best to have a few selections on hand so everyone is happy. Just bear in mind that not everyone is a craft beer lover, so make sure you have other drinks on offer. It’s more likely the bridesmaid will want wine or prosecco.
Also timing is key, drinking heavily on an empty stomach changes the way the body metabolizes alcohol and too much before the main meal may leave guests inebriated.
Pairing Beer with Food
The next step is to take into account all of the different food and drink options you’ll have at your wedding and how alcohol will interact with certain foods. For example, if someone has chosen a cocktail instead of wine or beer as their drink, later serving them an IPA would not be possible because the hops used could make them sick.
So try pairing lighter beers with light snacks like fruits and vegetables while heavier ones go well with hearty dishes.
The best way to pair beer with food is to make sure it complements the dish. For example, if you’re serving a spicy dish like barbecue or jerk chicken, a light-bodied lager will be a great pairing. If you’re serving something more rich and sweet, like chocolate cake or ice cream, a fuller-bodied stout will work perfectly.
Beer is not the same in a plastic cup, and it wont look great in pictures either. Where possible get solid pint glasses, even tankards if we want to get some personalised as wedding gifts for the groomsmen.
The right glassware is more than just visual beauty, the shape can enhance the beers flavour by keeping the right temperature or surface area to breathe. Ask for guidance from your brewery, to see if you want tulip, flutes or any other type of pint glass.
We’d also suggest you hire a bartender to deliver and serve, making sure the kegs are working correctly and can pour the perfect pint every time. Again, they should be able to match the right beer and glassware.
Setting the Stage
The first step in serving craft beer at your wedding is to have a signature brew on tap for guests to enjoy as they arrive, or by placing a six-pack of cans or bottles somewhere close to the entrance. This way, you’ll be able to offer a variety of different beers without forcing people to wait in line for an hour from the buffet table.
If you buy extra bottles as gifts or simply making sure you don’t run out, you could make a feature of these as table decorations. These can go well with a rustic outdoor summer wedding theme.
Pick Your Style
The first step to picking the right selection for your event is to decide what style you want. There are many different types of craft beer, and they each have their flavour profile and intended use.
For example, stouts are often brewed with dark roasted grains and can be used as a bolder counterpart to wines. They’re traditionally enjoyed at the end of a meal. The same goes for pale ales, which are light in colour but strong in flavour.
You could just have an assortment, so guests can enjoy ales and craft beer throughout the evening at their leisure.
How to pick the right beer
The key will always be craftmanship and flavours. When sampling, make sure you take a few sips and make sure it’s at the right temperature. Also pay attention to ABV to make sure it’s not too potent, and when tasty take notes to ensure you get the right ones.