Post # 1
Happy Wednesday Bees…I’m in need of some advice, tips, tricks, etc. First…the facts.
We will be having a full evening cocktail hour and seated dinner reception of approximately 70 adult guests. I would say it will be split pretty evenly between light, moderate and heavy drinkers.
My fiance and I will be handling the bar bill for the wedding and are trying to find the most economical option without skimping too much. I am adamant that our guests not have to pay for ANY of their drinks, but I am also realistic enough to know that this may mean we won’t be able to have a top shelf open bar with every mixer under the sun. We have two options:
Open Bar on consumption, as in we pay the bar bill at the end of the night. We have about $1500 that we can get away with spending. Do you think that is enough for the # of guests we have?
We could do beer, wine and soda with four signature drinks. One gin based, two vodka based and one with sake and vodka. Do you think this “limited” bar would this make enough of a difference to the final bar bill?
Basically what I would like to know is two things: 1) is $1500 enough to have a full open bar for 70 people for five hours, and 2) Would a limited bar save us a lot of money in comparison??
Post # 3
Has your caterer or venue quoted you a per person amount for alcohol? Less than $25 per head and you should be okay. If it’s an arrangement where you fork over cash to the venue at the end of the evening based on what individual guests ordered I’d say you should avoid the open bar.
Personally, I’d go the conservative route and do signature cocktails. You control the type of liquor and the recipe, which means there’s no danger of going over budget because a guest decides that your wedding is the time to experiement with top shelf vodka.
Post # 4
Wether $1500 will cover the bar entirely depends on your venue. I’ve seen places that only offer $35 bottles of wine, each beer is $5, and cocktails start at $8. That would go pretty fast, either way you do it.
Personally, I think the signature drink approach is just fine. The only thing I would ask is whether the drinks you are offering are set in stone. I personally like gin, but many people don’t, and with only two options (vodka and gin), I’m a tad worried that might bother people a little. Could you do a vodka, a gin, and a rum drink? Or tequila? Or whiskey? If limiting the base alcohol is the concern, I would suspect offering two vodka and two rum would cover the most bases, but I could be wrong. Maybe a poll would be helpful there? And also ask men in your life?
Post # 5
Oh – if you go the signature coctail route, look into punches and infusions. Bourbon and brandy are popular and can serve as the base for most punches, and infusions generally require only liquer for flavor and zing.
Post # 6
I love the signature drink concept- that should give enough variety for anyone.
Post # 7
We are doing beer, wine, champagne, a champagne cocktail and infused drinks like lavender limeade and orange basil iced tea. If people don’t like it, too bad! We are paying for it so they can lump it. Ahhh, it feels good to say that. 🙂
Post # 8
I think signature cocktails are way more fun and memorable than just having an open bar.
Post # 9
Thanks for all the suggestions ladies. I have the list of our ideas for the signature drinks at home but I’ll come back and run them by you. We did the one drink for something old, one for something new…etc.
Post # 10
- Wedding: September 2010 - The Glen Manor House
We’re doing beer, red & white wine, and 2 signature drinks. I think it’s plenty of alcohol and offers a nice personal touch!
Post # 11
- Wedding: January 2011 - Vintage Villas
Love the idea of signature cocktails, especially if you’re including four! There should be something for everyone!
Post # 12
OK…here are the drinks we’ve been considering…I’m thinking we need to get rid of one though and have a rum based drink? But the only one I can think of where we would change it is the Something Blue. Is there a blue rum based drink?
SOMETHING OLD (my fiance’s fave)
– Gimlet –
– Japanese Sunflower –
Splash of lime & gingerale
SOMETHING BORROWED (our fave drink from our fave bar)
– Black Dahlia –
– Blueberry Crush –
Garnish with blueberry
Post # 13
4 Signature drinks + beer + wine + soda….I think thats perfect!!!
Post # 15
I think all your drinks sound super delicious! My only concern is that they’re almost all fairly complex and look like they require more expensive ingredients, which may not save you much money in the end.
Post # 16
I think what you are doing sounds great but don’t know if will save you money. Could you go with just wine and beer?