I got married a couple weeks ago. It was an amazing celebration in Vermont (we are both originally from VT). We did a lot of things for the ceremony ourselves – designed the invites, arranged the flowers, made the napkins and table runners, and of course, I made mead for the toast.
Here is what I learned from my experience serving home brew mead at my wedding, hopefully it will make it easier for you if you choose to do the same!
A lot of planning goes into a wedding, and a lot gets done last minute. If you plan on serving home made mead, Make sure it isn’t one of the last minute items. Good mead needs time to age. So while you’re planning your proposal, get started on that mead!
Educate Your Guests
This is a big one. You need to let people know what they are drinking. With everything else going on, I made the mistake of not letting our guests know that we were toasting with mead. People are expecting champagne, so if your mead doesn’t taste very close to what they are expecting, it will probably confuse and potentially turn your guests off to the taste.
Have the MC announce it, your best man mention it in his speech, or include a mention in your program.
Use Large Bottles
Since you are serving to so many people, there is no need to bottle it in 12 oz bottles. Use 22oz beer, 750 ml Champagne or wine bottles. This will help the server be more efficient and fill more glasses per trip. It also is expected. I had some of my mead bottled in 12 oz bottles, and had someone say “They’re using beer to toast with?”
Use Blank or Custom Labeled Bottles
I know you probably use old beer/wine bottles for your homemade mead, but this is a very special occasion, make sure your bottles reflect that. Buy some new 22oz crown cap bottles or 750 ml clear wine bottles and make some custom labels for it. Or you can always remove the labels from your old beer & wine bottles.
If its too late to remove labels or brand your mead, have the server wrap it in a napkin when pouring at tables.
A typical champagne flute holds about 6oz of liquid. You will want to account for 4oz pours for your guests, you should also watch out for (and account for) servers with heavy hands. This means:
|Bottle Type||# of Pours||Bottles for 100 guests|
|750ml Champagne/Wine Bottle||6.3||16|
Then, make a couple extra bottles on top of this to be safe…
Make More Than Enough
Also, If I had to do it again (which I hope I don’t) I would’ve made twice the amount, This way I could cellar it and open a bottle every year on our anniversary. Mead just gets better with age (Just like marriage?) so those bottles will just get better and better and It would be a cool tradition to have. Oh well, I’ll just have to make a new batch and try it out with that!