- aunt pol
- 8 years ago
- Wedding: May 2011
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking on this one over the last while, and it always surprises me how strong the responses on the topic are, whenever it comes up. So I figured I’d detail the average Irish wedding, in terms of food and drink, then see what you all think.
Guests arrive to hotel/venue from church, usually ca 3pm. They have tea or coffee with biscuits, or if the budget allows, sparkling wine/champagne. The (cash) bar is also open at this stage. The bridal party go take lots of pics.
Ca 5pm, everybody enters the ballroom, or similar, to be seated for dinner. There is still water on every table, and waiters constantly circulate during dinner topping up red and white wine.
Once dinner is over, guests transition to dancefloor – usually entails wandering out to bar while tables are removed – and the band or DJ get going with the night’s entertainment. This continues til approx 2 am, when the bar closes, the resident’s bar (cash) opens, and usually close friends & family and any other wedding guests staying in the hotel, stay up into the wee hours for a sing song.
The bride & groom, or either set of parents, or often all three, tend to buy rounds of drinks for various guests during the evening.
Now, this is the usual run of events. Open bars died out here during the 80’s, because absolutely nobody can afford them. I’d imagine, for my guest list of 150-170, I’d be adding ca 5000 euro ($6000) to my bill if I opened the bar, which would effectively be doubling the reception bill. Nobody expects an open bar here.
If I can afford it, I might stump up for a signature cocktail before dinner, but if it were not there, nobody would notice.
I just thought this might shed some light on how there can really be a cultural dimension to the etiquette of the bar, and to point out that those who go for a cash bar are not lacking in manners at all.