April is Earth Month, and to celebrate we've come up with a few easy ideas for how to "go green" with your next event. Using natural materials and recycling as much as possible is a great start, but did you know you can be more earth-friendly with your food & wine too? Here are five great ways to get started:
1. Serve Natural Wines
"Natural wine" refers to wines that have been made with natural processes - both in the vineyard and in the winery. There is no strict definition, but the category includes wines made from biodynamic and organic grapes that are made with very little sulfur and other additives. It's not something you think about as much when choosing wine versus many other foods, but it is equally important. And just like organic, low-processed foods, natural wines often taste better and are more interesting than their highly-processed counterparts. At Domaine Somm we have a special focus on naturally made wines from small, artisanal producers. Contact us for a wide range of great options.
2. Use Filtered Water
Bottled water isn't only wasteful, it's also very expensive! Save money and the earth by using filtered water in reusable bottles or pitchers instead. Keep them to use again at your next event. You can also infuse the water with seasonal fruits or herbs for an attractive, locavore touch.
3. Use Real Glasses
Instead of paper or plastic cups, use real glassware. You can even brand the wine glasses to create a fun guest take-home gift. For a non-breakable option, try Govino (shown at right), a shatter-proof, non-BPA plastic wine glass designed to mimic crystal. They also make champagne, beer and cocktail glasses, and even a decanter! Govino glasses can also be branded and make a great giveaway.
4. Use Less Paper
Instead of printing paper menus, use chalk or dry erase boards to list food & beverage options. For larger scale events, you could even consider using a mobile app. You can also forego paper invitations in favor of evites using Paperless Post, Postmark, Evite or many others.
5. Eat Local & Vegetarian
Use local, seasonal foods to reduce your carbon footprint. Shop at your local farmer's market, or ask your caterer if they can do so. Reducing meat on the menu is another idea, since meat processing has a very high environmental impact. With the arrival of spring, this becomes much easier to do, and the results can be truly stunning. If you over-order, arrange to donate the leftovers to a local shelter.
And of course "reduce, reuse, recycle" as much as possible!