Booze is standard fare for most wedding celebrations. At your average wedding, you'd probably expect a champagne toast and — if you're part of the bridal party, at least — a sip or two of something bubbly before the festivities even begin. But if your wedding is a royal wedding, there are a few... quirky rules you may have to follow. It's only natural to wonder, then, if Meghan Markle gets to drink at the Royal Wedding, or what the alcohol policy in general is.
There are absolutely no shortage of rules surrounding a royal wedding. The Evening Standard recently published a list of 17 official regulations. Some of the rules are familiar — the bride, for example, is expected to wear white — but others are so specific that they can only be royal. Markle will be expected to carry myrtle in her bouquet and to lay it at the Tomb of The Unknown Soldier after the ceremony, and her ring must contain Welsh gold. Fruitcake is also a requirement.
Though there is a mandate for fruitcake, there's no mention of alcohol in the list of rules from The Evening Standard, and I can't find any indication anywhere else that Prince Harry, Markle, or their guests will be prevented from boozing it up on the big day. If anything, it seems that there will be wine aplenty.
According to The Sun, rumors were flying as early as January that Markle and Prince Harry were already committed to supplying their reception with wine from the same supplier that Prince William and Kate Middleton used at their 2011 wedding. Assuming this is true, the wine will come from Chapel Down winery in Kent, a supplier that starts selling bottles at the low, low price of £13 a bottle, or a little less than $18. Even a bottle of bubbly from this winery costs just £24 — or approximately $33 — per The Sun. At that price, we can all drink like royals.
Regardless of what wine was available at the last royal wedding, proof — photographic or otherwise — that Middleton herself had a drink was unavailable, which makes it hard to know what precedent has been set for royal brides to come. While it seems like it will technically be okay for Markle to indulge in boozy beverages the day she officially joins the Windsor family, so much of the culture of royalty is built on tradition that it would be helpful to know what actually went down in 2011. There are plenty of pictures of the Duchess of Cambridge in her stunning dress at the ceremony, but images of her at the reception are harder to find. Only true insiders can say whether or not previous royal brides have enjoyed their apparent freedom to drink.
Even if Markle does choose to toast to her new marriage, I imagine that she'll keep her drink count relatively low. It seems to me that this should go without saying, but a royal wedding guest etiquette guide from Best Life notes the importance of not hitting the bar too hard — though, since it is your day, you're entitled to do whatever the heck you want. However, since Queen Elizabeth II and other dignitaries will be in attendance, it's likely that the serious partying will be saved until the after-afterparty.
Markle may have to abide by some unexpected rules on her wedding day — the tiara is not optional, according to The Evening Standard — but she will get to be a "normal" bride where alcohol is concerned. Like other brides-to-be, it will be up to her to choose what and how much to drink. Let her live, people. Let her live.