(Closed) Bees Who Provided Their Own Alcohol…

posted 8 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
501 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

You can buy cases of wine at a discount almost everywhere. Just shop around. Whole foods, World Market, wineries in your area if you have them, and anywhere else you find deals. I think beer, wine and a sig. drink each are great options. I think it’s a great idea! Sounds like a lot of fun.

As far as liquor for a signiture drik, you can go to the liquor stores in your area and ask for prices on bottles of alcohol. Some will be willing to give you a discount and negoriate with you. You just need to shop around and let them know you are shopping around. Someone will offer you the best deal.


Post # 4
7288 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

We used an estate my family owns in which we provided most the booze for guests we had around 50-60 guests at any given time during the night.

We went to Costco and bought white and red wine ( they have a nice and affordable brand whoms name is evading me right now) And for the red we bought a case. So average about 7 dollars a bottle and 12 in a case. 80 something bucks [ we had many leftovers, but the person who bought it was a wine freak , so he kept the rest ๐Ÿ˜‰ ]

As far as liquor- we already had a stocked outdoor and indoor bar but we took specialty requests ahead of time and my brother went out and bought a few  selections at a local liquor store. (50 bucks)

 a few cases of beer ( standards like miller lite, and some more seasonal ales) which averaged about 50 bucks.

So for 50-60 people 180 dollars went towards alcohol for wine, beer, and signature liquor.

I recommend buying in bulk from bj’s, costco etc cause when you need to buy a lot you get the discount.

Post # 5
406 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Agreed.  Watch for BevMo’s big wine sales, too!

Post # 6
95 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

Your idea sounds great. We will be doing the same and we are inviting heavy drinkers so to combat that I told him Jack and Coke, wines, and beer as well.  I also agree with the poster on using the wholesale places you can get many deals but I have to tell you the wine from this place is to die for its called www.stjameswinery.com/

Or see if you have a Total Wine in your area, they told me I can also do a consignment thing where if all hasn’t been used I can return the unopened bottles…Hope this helps

Post # 7
527 posts
Busy bee

We went to a large wholesale liquor store (Specs) and met with one of their salesmen.  We told him our guest count and he was able to tell us exactly how much to buy (we had beer, wine, rum (for mojitos) and vodka (for cucumber martinis)).  He gave us a spot on quote as we only had a few bottles of wine left and one each of the vodka and rum.  We were also able to save money this way because he was able to help us pick out decent alcohol while staying in our budget.

Post # 8
285 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

We used total wine. We had 165 people and the booze cost us abour $2400.  We got 10% off the wine but the liquor prices were set, though they were the best prices we could find. We did have a lot of leftovers and had some leftovers we bought:

6 handles of vodka (3 leftover)

5 handles of gin (3 leftover)

2 handles of tequila

2 handles of Jack

3 handles of Crown Royal (1 left over)

2 bottles of Malibu

2 handles of Captain Morgan

2 bottles of Baileys

5 handles of sweet tea vodka for signature drink (2 leftover)

Wine we did a bottle or red and white at each table, so 2 cases of each

Wine at the bar we did 10 magnums chardonnay, 10 magnums of pinot grigio, and like 12 magnums of cabernet

Beer we had 240 bottles bud light, 48 heineken, 90 corona light and 48 sam adams as well as a couple of cases of nonalcoholic.  We had about 4 cases of beer left over.

Post # 9
230 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

We’re not providing our own alcohol but I wanted to get an idea for how much it would cost. We used this site to try to figure out what we would need. Hope this helps!


Post # 11
5398 posts
Bee Keeper

My brother got cases of wine from local wineries (we have a lot nearby) and that was the most economical way to do it. They also had their venue provide other drinks but that was a big money saver for them. Sorry I don’t have any details since it wasn’t mine, but if you have any local wineries you might want to check them out, as they will gladly take business. ๐Ÿ™‚

Oh and sams club/Costco sell liquor significantly cheaper than other stores so you may want to consider that.

Post # 12
476 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

We’re also in Alabama ๐Ÿ™‚  Our reception is in our church’s social hall, and we are providing our own alcohol- beer, wine.  Fiance is in beer/wine sales, so we get a discount…I know that the Mountain Brook Piggly Wiggly has an awesome wine/beer department and they can help you calculate how much you need per guest and they offer case discounts ๐Ÿ™‚

Post # 13
3625 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

@Mrs. Bear Cheese Pie:  We are providing our own alcohol as well as the venue actually allows this and our caterer will provide the bartender as well as the bar setup (bar, glasses, etc.). Our venue also has an ice machine onsite. One thing to consider is that you should make sure you have all the necessary paperwork for serving your own alcohol (especially insurance) just in case anything happens. Bc we are using our caterer’s bartender, we are covered under their. We also have separate liability insurance for our wedding per the venue’s request.

We don’t expect a huge crowd of heavy drinkers and we didn’t want a ton of half-consumed bottles at the end of the night, so we are only providing white + red wine, 3-5 varieties of beer and one or two signature cocktails as well as non-alcoholic options. If I had a larger wedding and knew people loved cockails, I would probably do a full, possibly top-shelf, bar but again, I don’t know what I would do with 2/3 bottle of gin and like 1/2 bottle of tequila, for example.

We will get all of our beers from Costco (at our Costco, it breaks down to about $1/bottle for beer and that at least is easy to transport home as you open each one to order, rather than having multiple servings for each one – like wine). We got our wines from the BevMo buy 1 get one for $0.05 sale, which is actually going on right now. That’s 50% off each bottle essentially. Ours were originally $20 each, now $10 each. (Don’t forget to buy in EVEN numbers!) For signature cocktails, we will probably just buy the big bulk bottle from Costco as well once we figure out what specific type will go in there.

If you have extra wine leftover, you can just keep the unopened bottles as hostess gifts or save them for future parties at your house. There are online calculators for how much alcohol you will need, but I used those as a rough guideline since again, I don’t expect a lot of alcohol consumption.

Post # 14
714 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2020 - establishment theatre

were getting two kegs, were serving one kind of wine( my fav is moscato so were serving that) mainly for the toast. and then we have three cocktails to choose from. a friend is bartending for us for 50.00. were renting the bar itself and the texas tanker( holds the kegs and ice) from a rental company for pretty cheap. the three cocktails are bloody mary, kessler and pepsi( my Fiance fav) and malibu and Pinapple( My fav). plus there is lemonade and ice tea so people can have vodka lemonade if they want also.

Post # 15
3175 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

We bought cases of Rex Goliath (very good) red with a 10% discount & also there was a rebate. I think it ended up being around $4/bottle after it was all said and done. We bought 1.5 litres of Domino Chardonnay, which all of our guests raved about. It was $8.10 after case discount for each 1.5 litre, or just over $4/bottle, as well. 

We got Yeungling at Costco for very cheap (because it was a 24 pack), but I found the rest of our beer to be just as cheap at the local grocers. 

I worked in a restaurant once, and they do have a variety of wines/beers that often you (as a employee) can get at cost. I still found shopping around at the local stores was more economical, though, as the restaurant I worked at had higher end brands for just a few dollars more. Your experience could vary, though.

Post # 16
615 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

We supplied our own alcohol and just hired a bartender through our caterer. We served two red wines (a blend and a cab), two whites (pinot grigio and chardonnay), and two beer kegs (one light, one specialty ale). We purchased all the wine at the grocery store, most of it was even 10% off, and each double bottle was less than $9. We bought our wine in the magnum/1.5L bottles since it made for fewer bottles to transport and deal with opening. We had some leftover wine, but we killed those kegs in no time flat.

We had less than 100 guests so in theory, our booze bill shouldn’t have been too bad, but we have heavy duty drinkers on both sides of the family, not to mention our huge group of friends who can be quite wild. I think in total we spent ~$800 on wine and beer. Hard liquor was never even a consideration, enough people brought flasks and bottles anyway.

But! 2nd’ing the Rex Goliath. DELICIOUS wine for way reasonable prices – it’s what we served as well.

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