Everlasting Love -
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“We've got this gift of love, but love
is like a precious plant. You can't just accept it and leave it in the
cupboard or just think it's going to get on by itself. You've got to keep
watering it. You've got to really look after it and nurture it.”
-- John Lennon
The ceremonies surrounding the sacred institution of the wedding herald greatness. The twin sins of mediocrity and excess are replaced with balance, gentle elegance, and sublime manifestations that support eternal union. Food and wine are on par with music, flowers, and location. These defining symbols are transcended only by the sacred vows of matrimony.
The saddest rehearsal dinner scene is wonderful food served alongside wine unfit for marinating. Dirt-cheap sparkling wine served at the reception and poured for toasting the newly weds stain the divine moment. Invoking wine’s “purple rule,” that cheap is the opposite of value and quality, is your fail-safe. The rehearsal dinner, with entrees ranging from rack of lamb, broiled salmon or filet mignon must never be accompanied by wine reminiscent of fruit gone bad. Low-end sparkling wine made from overproduction accomplishes one thing: guests have severe headaches the next day.
This should never happen.
Delicious, beautifully produced value wines are out there and more than a
few deserve a prominent place while honoring love and union.
Is there a wine to celebrate the institution of love with a more perfect name than Saint-Amour? This delicate, highly food friendly gem hails from the Burgundy region of France and is a member of the Cru Beaujolais family of regal wines. On Valentine’s Day, it seems to sell out throughout the world. I’ve sat back and watched dinner guests take empty bottles home as keepsakes.
Other states may vary, but finding solid Beaujolais-Villages or Saint-Amour isn’t difficult anywhere. Local wine shops can get these through distributors and purchases by the case will, almost everywhere, earn a healthy discount.
White wines are commonly bargain priced, and have a place at the dinner alongside red wines. Remember, you are pleasing the palates for a group, not just yourself. Wine is like art: some like Renoir, others Picasso. Find common ground.
There are wonderful value-priced white wines from South Africa. Look for Chenin Blanc. It’s dry, complex and usually very affordable. It’s an underrated wine from a highly regarded wine producing country. Vouvray, a Chenin Blanc from France’s Loire Valley, can be purchased at bargain prices as well as Albarino from Spain. A wine coming on strong is the amazing Grüner Veltliner from Austria. It’s delicious, often highly affordable.
Think about having different wines on each table. It’s classy and I’ll wager a night on the town that this costs no more than serving cheap clunkers. With thoughtful wine selections, you inspire good will and honor the magnificence of the occasion. Bad wines say quality is unimportant.
Regal Champagne is a sparkling wine, albeit the most popular on the planet. But, serving up a few dozen bottles Laurent-Perrier at the wedding reception will dramatically lighten the wallet. Certain sparkling wines are equal in quality and far less expensive. Some of the finest are made in America. Avoid, however, the really cheap misleadingly labeled bottles that falsely suggest inexpensive Champagne. Sparkling wine is for the reception and the choices include Gruet Brut Rosé from New Mexico to Italy’s delicious range of Prosecco. The acclaimed Charles de Fere Blanc de Blanc is highly affordable. Sparkling wines are always served chilled in flute glasses.
These bits of wine wisdom are helpful for wedding planners, caterers, and those paying the freight. Few things in life equal the beauty of a wedding. Make it the best ever with wines that nurture love and compliment the meaning of the moment. Precious memories last forever.
DOC LAWRENCE PRODUCTIONS