Love, honesty, respect and… wine. All key ingredients for a long and happy marriage. Which is why it’s not a bad idea to start as you mean to go on with a wedding list composed of malbecs and merlots. No crystal ornaments, no stainless steel, no towel-set systems, just a ready-made cellar that would make Bacchus proud…
The Wine Wedding List is run by Edward Parker Wines, an independent wine merchant that will source even the most obscure fermented request. A city boy who swapped 6am starts for New World jaunts in the hope of honing his 400-strong collection, Ed, the founder, is a fan of the ‘pleasure’ and ‘leisure’ of wine. He loves everything wine-related, and is fascinated by the fact it’s possible that wine from a vine growing in one place can taste so very different from that of a vine growing in another.
Now, Ed is the kind of man who’s far happier when he sees someone with a glass of wine in their hands, so he was more than merry to take me on a taste adventure through the subtleties of his collection. The first is a white that tastes like a red (which I think says more about my dubious sommelier skills than it does about the wine itself). Next, some Pol Roger champagne that manages to knock me out in one mouthful. Sensing the inexorable inebriation taking place, Ed has soon grabbed my glass, tipped out its content and swiftly refilled it with something a little more solid — a blackberry-noted shiraz all the way from Millamolong, Australia. This should do the trick in making me at least appear sophisticated and refined. It’s sweet, sharp and strong. Mmm…
400 samples later, I’m informed that if you’d still rather like some punch bowls and pans, you can have a wine wedding list built to complement a more traditional set of wrapped-up requests, although, having made my way through a cellar’s worth of great grapes, why you’d want vases more than viogniers is now beyond me.
The Wine Wedding List even provide a cellar storage service, where your wine is kept for you (in happy conditions, of course) until you’re ready to drink it, at which point it will be delivered to you ready for guzzling.
Ed wants to pass on his passion to couples embarking on married life by giving them a bespoke wine cellar to journey with them through every major milestone (1st anniversary, 5th anniversary, 10th anniversary, birth of first child, birth of second child, debut of first matching hairstyles, successful house-training of dog, etc). Ed, or one of his hand-selected fellow oenophiles, will sit down with each couple to talk wine and wishes, and help them pick the perfect palate-pleasers.
So if you don’t fancy putting your honeymoon on your wedding list with the Smith wedding registry, you could always hit the bottle(s) instead with your own wine wedding list. And, if you fancy coupling that with a post-nuptial grape escape, check out the wine-country honeymoon hotlist we put together for Brides.com.
Want a sneak at Ed’s top five wedding wines? Here you go…
1 Some traditional champagne, of course − Jean Comyn Brut NV.
2 A deep and complex Chilean Bordeaux blend − Encierra Vineyard Reserve, Colchagua Valley 2005.
3 Some class and character from a world-famous white-wine-producing village − Puligny Montrachet, Domaine Bzikot 2007.
4 A stylish seven-year-old from the David Beaulieu brothers − Ch. Coutet, Grand Cru Saint-Émilion 2002.
5 A historic and exciting Burgundy − Chambolle-Musigny Clos Le Village, Domaine Henri Felettig 2007.