(Closed) 2 drinks per person?

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
1659 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

Maybe when the server takes orders for drinks, she can tell each guest that the first two rounds are taken care of. I’ve attended and hosted a few restaurant gatherings where this has been handled well by the servers.

Post # 5
208 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Are you open to other ideas?  We don’t want to spend a ton of money on an open bar and are in a similar situation.  My fiance’s family doesn’t drink at all, my family  is pretty low-key, but we both have friends who would love to go overboard.  We are probably going to end up setting a dollar amount…we will let the manager/bartender know and they will keep track.  Once that money runs out, it’s cash bar.  This will probably get us through the coctail hour plus a bit extra.  I was thinking of making two small but pretty picture frames – one saying “open bar” and the other saying “cash bar” for the bartender to display at the right times.  That way there is no suprise!


*Edit – on second thought, it seems like your situation is more of a sit-down restaurant and this probably wouldn’t work…

Post # 6
597 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2013

@leblk452:  I’m going to agree with Ellegee on this one, tell the serving staff/waitresses to inform the guests and if you recieve any directed questions by said uncles/cousins politly tell them you’ve just decided since it was so early in the day that it seemed appropriate for 2 not unlimited. 

DO NOT feel bad for doing so, I will not be having an open bar whenever I do get married for that reason, I do not want people getting slobbering drunk and saying something crass or driving home that way! 

Post # 7
3267 posts
Sugar bee

@leblk452:  What about pairing a drink or two with each course.  Then they pick between the rolls and the drink options.

I went to a wedding that had each course paired with a selected wine, and it was fantastic.

Post # 8
261 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

This is a tricky issue!

One thing you could do is provide a couple of options for signature drinks to guests upon arrival and then a glass of champagne or sparkling wine near the middle to end of the meal for toasts. You can list it in your menu so that there is no surprise to guests. Instruct the servers that they may only serve two alcoholic beverages during the meal, the first signature drink and then your toast.

If you are really concerned about etiquette then consider offering a drink tailored to each course: appetizer, entrée and dessert. A coordinated menu is never a faux pas and three drinks over the course of a lunch reception are certainly enough. If the three drinks end up being too pricey then make one of them a virgin cocktail.

Finally if all else fails consider preordering bottles of wine or pitchers of punch for the table rather than providing two drinks. Polite company will dictate that they need to share. At least one would hope so.

Just remember it is your day and you have nothing to apologize for. Your family is attending your wedding not a kegger.

Post # 9
1501 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I like the idea that was suggested of the server telling the guests that they don’t have to pay for the first two rounds.

You can also have the word out there before your wedding so the guests aren’t surprised.

Post # 11
8684 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

@andielovesj:  I like this idea. or what about just some bottles on the table- some beer and saki? Then when it is gone it is gone everyone can just drink soda/tea.

Post # 12
6123 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

I’d have the waiter tell each person as they take their drink order “the hosts are offering two complimentary drinks this evening.”  Then you can list the drinks on your personalized menu.

Post # 13
1482 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

I actually like your first idea of saying “the first two are on us” on the menus.

Paying for one table and not another is the fast track to hurt feelings. There’s just no way you’ll be able to keep that a secret.

Or, as Sienna76 suggested, have the server say to the table, “the hosts are offering two complimentary beverages today”. They can be non-alcoholic or alcoholic, but you’re paying for two. That way, there’s no messy drink tickets, and people still get their choice. After two, it’s on the individual.

If your wedding is in the afternoon, I bet most of your guests will be just fine with two drinks.

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