Let’s Start with Drinks

In the film Steel Magnolias, the Julia Roberts character chooses ‘blush’ and ‘bashful’, two shades of pink as her wedding colors.  “I like pink,” she says, “pink is my signature colour!”

When we began to put the wedding together, The Partner and I decided to create a ceremony and reception that would reflect who we were, what we liked, and where we came from.

We want to put our signature on this wedding and much of our planning  (and much of the remaining Gay Groom’s blog entries) will be about how we throw a splash of ‘us’ into the ceremony.

Let’s start with the drinks.

Being as your humble blogger was born and raised just outside the Niagara Region, we decided to incorporate the glorious bounty of Niagara into our wedding.  The Niagara area is known for being on of the few areas in Canada warm enough to grow ‘tender fruit’,  tender fruit being grapes, peaches, and the like.  So along with the caterer, we have created our signature drink, to be handed out by the wait staff before the ceremony when guests first come in the door – a non-alcoholic peach nectar mimosa – and since neither The Partner nor I imbibe, an alcohol-free cocktail seems fitting for our signature drink.

Our Signature Drink - Non-Alcoholic Peach Mimosa

Our Signature Drink Non-Alcoholic Peach Mimosa

Our signature drink is also a nod to Winona, Ontario (a small town in the same region) known for their annual peach festival, where I lived before making the move to Toronto about a decade ago.  The peach mimosa has a lovely light orange colour, and orange just happens to be our primary wedding colour… but more about wedding colours in a later Gay Groom blog.   To those people who say signature drinks are passé, The Gay Groom says, “go plan your own wedding!”

As well, we will serve only Niagara wines at the reception (since we are having an afternoon wedding we won’t be serving any hard liquor).  Niagara wines have come a long way in the last decade or two now can hold their own against the best wines in the world.  Niagara lies on the 42nd parallel, and shares this latitude with Bordeaux France. Comparisons are often made between Bordeaux and Niagara as both grow grapes in a cool climate, with clay loam and limestone soils.   This ain’t yer grandfather’s Niagara wine!  Today Niagara’s wines have been accepted in France and the world over.  Recently a Niagara Cabernet Merlot was sampled blindly with a Bordeaux Blend and the Niagara Blend scored higher than the latter.

The Partner and I have chosen two of Niagara’s best, Henry of Pelham’s reserve cabernet and chardonnay to serve at our reception.

Henry of Pelham

Henry of Pelham Niagara Wines

These are the notes on our choice of wines:

Henry of Pelham Merlot, Reserve: This unfiltered Merlot serves up aromas of sweet black cherry, black currant, and Mediterranean herbs (rosemary, lavender, thyme).  Finishes with excellent length with a hint of oak on  a ripe fruit core.

Henry of Pelham Chardonnay, Reserve: Powerful varietal fruit character of apple, pineapple, pear and citrus.

Of course the champagne we serve right after the officiant pronounces us husband and husband will be French – not Niagara.

Niagara sparkling wine would be tacky.  And that wouldn’t be very ‘us’.

72 days to go.

Jeffrey, The Gay Groom


1 Comment

Filed under gay, gay men, same-sex marriage, wedding

One response to “Let’s Start with Drinks

  1. Heh, we’re doing two wines and a signature cocktail, too, and a champagne for the toasts, though we haven’t yet decided upon the vintages of the wines or the makeup of the cocktail. You’re further along than us on several important details, even though our wedding is a week earlier. Should I start panicking? 😉

    Our colors are “chocolate” and “pool,” though we’re now using those more as ideals and as representative of color families than sticking to them precisely. Our suits, for example, will be a tan linen, but we’ll probably wear chocolate-brown shirts and aqua or sage ties, and we’ll wear ti leaf garlands instead of boutonnieres.

    Because we’re getting married overlooking, though not right on, the beach, and because we’re both fans of mid-century design and tacky tiki bars, we’re also trying to incorporate some beachy/retro/tiki elements into the day. Thus, the less formal linen suit rather than tuxedo or morning coat, and the garlands.

    We’re also planning customized tiki mugs as favors, which can also be used for the signature cocktail, and tropical flowers for centerpieces. And our wedding cake topper will be a customized version of us in linen pants, camp shirts and garlands, and sandals, standing on a sandy base with a palm tree.

    For our save the dates, we used a retro, 50s/60s-inspired San Francisco design, which we carried over to the invitations, but the reply cards use the same retro style and palette, but of a beach scene with palm trees, surfboards and a cocktail with hibiscus flowers. It actually looks more elegant than tacky, despite the way it sounds 😉

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