Wedding season 2019 is winding down, and—between picking out our fancy outfits and browsing gift registries at the last minute—we started reminiscing. This week, we asked The Fervent Few for their best wedding-related beer stories, whether from their own celebrations or events they attended. Let’s take a trip down the (beer) aisle.
Andrés Muñoz: “The groom at the most recent wedding I went to is a cellarman at a brewery in Charlotte. He had some of their beers tapped at the wedding venue. I don’t know why, especially since I didn’t know him or the brewery, but something about sharing the guy’s special day and drinking beers he helped produce really elevated the whole experience. We’ve since become buddies. His wife and my girlfriend have grown closer, too (they knew each other back in college). The beer definitely played a role in that too.
That said, my absolute favorite booze-related wedding memory was with mead, actually. My fraternity brother got married in the middle of the woods in a beautiful, hippie-dippie ceremony. One of his good friends brews mead and made a blackcurrant mead just for the wedding. During the ceremony, they poured some into a goblet and drank from it, passed the goblet to the entire wedding party, then set it up in the reception area for all of the guests to share in the experience. It was beautiful.”
Rob Day: “My wedding wouldn't be complete without some special beer, so we approached it two ways. First, my wife-to-be and I brewed a 'collab,' if you will, called The Mrs. It was our first brew together, and carefully selected to be a style/recipe we'd both love. We debuted it at our rehearsal dinner post-party, which was a huge success. For the actual wedding, we each selected our preferred brand of craft that the venue had available and had cases of it brought in to complement the normal selection. I think that's a little more of a basic move, but it had to happen.”
Ashley Rodriguez: “My friends got married last year and had a nice, fancy bar with specially curated cocktails … and then a cooler of Hamm's. It was pretty perfect.”
Nick Weber: “I can't think of any past beer memories from weddings, but you can bet your fur my fiancée and I are doing a Saison Dupont toast (in lieu of Champagne) at our wedding next year.”
Daniel Castro Chin: “Aww! This brought back lovely memories. My brother and I have a brewery, and my sister had our beers at her wedding. She surprised us with a Brothers of the Bride Beer Bar featuring two of our beers, which we were absolutely thrilled about. We were just getting started, so it was an amazing gesture to even see our logo displayed and folks enjoying what I believe was one of our first bottled batches on a bigger system (we used to brew at a homebrew scale, and had just moved up to a 15-barrel system).”
Ian Davis: “My wife and I got married outdoors on October 29th. What should have been a 40-degree, rainy day ended up being 70 degrees and sunny. Luckily, I stocked up on multiple cases of Fat Head’s Trail Head IPA and Great Lakes’ Nosferatu Imperial Red Ale. It was the perfect transition from an end-of-summer, refreshing IPA to—as the sun set and the weather cooled off a little—a nice fall beer. Family members on both sides raved about the beer, and three years later still do.”
Brandon Morreale: “We got married in 2010 in Michigan when we were 23. The venue where we held our wedding only let you have beer or wine, and you had to organize it yourself. To me, this was the most important task at hand. Not to mention, we had a significant number of Bud Light drinkers attending that we had to cater to. In the end, we drove kegs of Goose Island Honkers Ale, Short’s Pontius Road Pilsner, and Founders Red’s Rye IPA to a little outdoor venue in Holland, and then I drank the mostly flat (but still on-ice) kegs when we returned from our honeymoon a week later.”
Joan C. W. Hoffman: “My husband and I planned a wedding in nine days. We hosted it at our favorite bottle shop, Bombers, in Wilmington, North Carolina on March 1. Even though we gave people only nine days’ notice, we still had 80 of our friends at a noon wedding on a Friday in March. The beer I was drinking right before the five-minute ceremony was AVL IPA by Highland Brewing. It was one of the best days of my life for so many reasons, and the beer definitely tasted better because of that.”
Ian Graham: “I actually just had my wedding last weekend, and I brewed all of the beer for it. Honestly, leading up to the wedding, I was mostly nervous about the beer—if we had enough different styles, if all of them were good, etc. My now-wife told me I had to be hands-off with the beer on the day, which turned out to be a great rule. I think otherwise I would have been hovering around the bar constantly. In the end everything went well, and I’m super happy that I did it. Any time I brew one of the wedding beers again, I’ll probably look back on different parts of the night and remember fun moments.”
Nick Yoder: “Pretty similarly to Brandon Morreale, we were married in Michigan in 2011, when we were 22/23, and had to organize our own alcohol service. That and the music were my main tasks. Having just graduated college a month before, pretty much all our friends wanted were macro, light beers, which we catered to because we were young and lacking money. But we also made sure to get some Sam Adams because I wanted some sort of craft option.
Fast forward to this July, when one of my brothers got married. A guy he went to high school with also happens to own a brewery with his dad, so there was a special sixtel keg of passion fruit peach NEIPA made for the wedding party.”
James Hernandez: “One of my favorite cousins got married around six years ago, and I offered to take care of the beer. I was always around when she was very little, and it’s been great to hang with her as an adult. The wedding was very small, and she did most of the decorating herself, so I was glad to take one thing off the to-do list for the young couple. I chose three beers: a Blonde, an English Pale, and a hoppy American Pale Ale. Everything went over really well, and everyone seemed to like the selection. The Blonde was the most popular, as expected.”