“I do” with a brew: Hosting a craft beer wedding

(Photo: Grooms Advice)

(Photo: Grooms Advice)

I have two great passions.  Two influences that give meaning to my life, prevent me from falling into a pit of despair, shield me from the wretchedness of existence.  The first and foremost deterrent to utter hopelessness is my beautiful, loving, supportive fiancée, Nicole, the woman whom I love and whom I will wed this June.  The other thing I live for is beer.

Don’t misunderstand me, my passion for the frothy libation is more refined than pounding Bud Lights, performing keg stands, and crushing empty cans on my forehead.  I drink beer that’s more artisanal, more authentic, and more flavorful.  I’m a beer geek.  I seek out weird and wonderful ales and I find happiness in a well-crafted lager.  Unquestionably, nothing can ever replace my lovely lady but, let’s put it this way: if my future wife and a crate of Westvleteren 12 were both dangling from a cliff’s edge, I’d save her first, of course.  But, the sight of that plummeting crate and the sound of those bottles dashed against the rocks would haunt my dreams forever.

Between Nicole and beer, you can bet our impending nuptials will be a sudsy affair and, if you’re a beer geek like me, you might wonder how you, too, can host a craft beer wedding.  How does one incorporate beer into the celebration without shoe-horning it in?  How does one keep domestic-beer-guzzling guests contented amidst a sea of microbrew?  How does one find venues that permit the consumption of that favorite fermentable?

The answers to these questions are many and diverse.  However, through planning our own wedding, we have gained valuable knowledge and picked up pointers on how to put on a zymurgy-centric ceremony.  Use our hints and allow our experiences to guide you as you design your own hoppy, malty matrimony.  Realize, though, our insights aren’t one-size-fits all; it’s up to you to personalize your craft beer wedding.

The Proposal

Post-proposal, pre-beer

Post-proposal, pre-beer

Deciding which special occasion is special enough to break out the good stuff—the beers that have been aging in the cellar for years—is a daunting task.  Thanksgiving?  Maybe.  Birthdays?  Probably.  New Year’s Eve?  There’s a good chance.  Indecision results in more bottles going in the beer cellar, less coming out.

It’s important to clear the shelves for incoming beers.  A great opportunity to gut the bottle stockpile is with an undoubtedly special occasion: a marriage proposal.  What better time than that to crack the wax seal on a vintage bottle?  When I proposed to Nicole at a party, for example, a friend set out a table of cellared Belgian-style and barleywine ales beforehand so we could commemorate the moment with all due extravagance.  Now, I’m busy re-stocking the cellar for our anniversary celebrations.

Next up: The Bachelor Party

About Chris Bruns

Chris Bruns is a self-professed beer geek living in Denver. Chris spends much of his time brewing beer at home with friends and family, attempting to visit every brewery in Colorado, attending special beer events and festivals, purchasing and assessing the latest releases from local breweries, and blogging about his adventures in the world of craft beer. He is also the Denver Craft Beer Examiner on Examiner.com. Contact Chris by e-mail at chrisdbruns@gmail.com or through his blog at www.beerincolorado.blogspot.com.

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  • http://www.craftbeerchick.com Craft Beer Chick

    If my groom showed up in the blue bottle tie, I wouldn’t leave him—as long as he brought a matching garter!

    has cheap event licenses that allow unlimited servings at a brewery, so
    I’ve considered renting my favorite brewery for a reception.

    of my craft beer friends have also incorporated homebrew into the
    event, either by brewing their own marriage beer together or brewing
    with friends in the months leading to the reception so they have unique
    beers to serve.

    This was a great article, and the last paragraph was my favorite part. Congrats on your engagement!

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