(Closed) Cocktail receptions

posted 9 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
1078 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

We hosted a cocktail reception at our wedding. However, it was because we held a later ceremony and didn’t want the structured feel of a sit-down dinner. The cocktail reception allowed for the event and guests to be more open and social than a formal dinner.

In all honesty, when choosing between a full meal and a cocktail hors d’orveures reception, the costs were the same. It most likely will not save you much $$.


Post # 4
3332 posts
Sugar bee

I attended a wedding with a cocktail reception (for two coworkers) a couple of years ago and it was wonderful.  They held the reception in a loft space, so there was plenty of space for people to mingle and move around.  There were some standing tables, small tables with chairs and some "comfy" chairs and couches spread around the space.  They served both passed appetizers and had a cheese/fruit display.  They had a "signature drink" as well as champagne, pop and punch.  There was also a dessert table, with cake and mini desserts.  There was a jazz quartet playing, which added to the atmosphere.  All and all, I think it was really successful and fun. 

Post # 5
2271 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

I agree. We are having a cocktail reception (without alcohol!) because of having an evening ceremony and I don’t think we are saving money over a sit down dinner.

Post # 6
68 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

We are having a cocktail reception as well. My sister had one herself a few years ago and to be honest it was the best wedding yet. No sit down dinner that restricts guests to their seat, a lot more dancing and socializing and tons more fun. It may not save you a lot of money in the end but you will be able to visit with all of your guests and enjoy a night with your best family and friends with great food. Good luck!

Post # 7
5271 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2009

I agree with a few of the other posters, a cocktail reception with heavy apps really will be similar in costs to a full on buffet dinner. What is cool about a cocktail reception, is that it adds to the feel and atmosphere of the wedding. When I first started planning I was thinking about serving tapas, but it just became easier, logistically, to serve dinner 🙁 but I still love the tapas idea!

Post # 8
944 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

I think I would prefer a cocktail reception. We are still trying to figure out what we want. We are having around 45-50 people so that will be easily done. I agree though with the other girls, if you do heavy apps then it will cost usually just as much or even more than a sit-down because there are all those small little bites to make, plus the different onees to make, it’s more time consuming sometimes I think. The locaiton we are looking at has a fireplace, a leather couch and two leather chairs we might be able to use as a comfy area for people to use too. I think that gives a more relaxed atmostphere than a sit-down dinner. Besides, if you have people who aren’t keen on assigned seating (they are shy and don’t want to be at a table with people they don’t know) then a cocktail I think would work out better.

Post # 9
613 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

we did a cocktail reception. it rocked. everyone had so much fun. the whole vibe for our wedding was much more ‘fun party’ than ballroom wedding. we did save a lot on food…sit down dinner was $89/person (not including bar). heavy apps (passed and displayed) were ~$40/person including tax + gratuity. Since it was a ‘cocktail party’, we did open bar. That bar bill was pretty big, but we still ended up paying less than we would have with sit down dinner.  Plus the rental fees were less.  we planned for about 10 pieces per person, plus we had fruit, cheese, veggie, and dessert displays.

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