Post # 1
My wedding is quickly approaching and I am finalizing the details. I originally planned on having only beer, wine and a signature drink at my reception to keep bar costs under control. After meeting with the venue yesterday I found out that the least expensive wine they carry is $28/bottle and you only get 4 glasses/bottle.
I am now wondering, would it be ok to exclusively serve the signature drink during cocktail hours, wine during dinner, and have a full open bar only after dinner?
Has anyone ever been to a wedding with an open bar only after dinner? Would this looks tacky?
Please help! I’m loosing sleep over this.
Post # 3
I think it depends on your timeline and whether or not you’re having a cocktail hour for your guests while you are finishing up any post-ceremony photos.
I’d suggest asking your venue first if they allow you to bring in your own wine and what their corking fee is. You can get wine really cheap and depending on their fee it might work out to be cheaper than using their wine.
If you’re having a cocktail hour, keep the beer/wine/sig drink for that, close the bar for dinner (or if you can bring wine put some on the tables for dinner) then re-open the bar after dinner.
There are so many options, but it just depends on how your timeline is set up.
Post # 4
Thank you for your reply DaneLady,
Unfortunately, we are not allowed to bring in any wine or liquor at all.
I will be having a cocktail hour but was wondering if it would be in poor taste to serve the signature drink exclusively.
Our guest will arrive at 5:30 for a cocktail hour and dinner will begin at approximately 7:00 (after introductions etc.). We would then open the bar following dinner.
Post # 5
I don’t think that is tacky at all, an open bar is always a good thing even if it starts a little later.
Post # 6
@caramellady: I don’t think it’s tacky at all — it sounds like a good solution.
I would consider flipping it, though — what about having a full open bar during the cocktail hour, serving wine during dinner, and then going down to just your signature cocktail after dinner? I say this because people can have whatever drink they want at the beginning, when they really want it, and as the night winds on, you can start limiting the alcohol. I tend to drink 1 dribk during cocktail hour, 1 during dinner, and then nothing after dinner, because I”m already buzzed at that point.
Anyway, just a thought; either way you do it will be great, I think.
Post # 7
Sounds like fun!! I like to drink different things all night, so this plan works well with me!
I love signature drinks most of all!!! I’m a sucker for them at weddings!
Post # 8
I was going to have it after dinner because I figure whatever buzz people would get druing the cocktail hour would be lost after they eat.
Having the full open bar after dinner would be great for the party portion of the reception. Plus, I would be able to enjoy it as well!
Post # 9
@caramellady: I’ve never been to a wedding with only the full bar after dinner but I think I would be perfectly fine with it. I’ve been to weddings with only beer and wine, free beer only, open bar the entire reception, etc. So people do different things.
What is your signature cocktail? The only worry would be that maybe people might not like it. But for an hour I think that is perfectly okay. For sugary things people tend to like it or hate it. I think wine at dinner is perfectly fine…but I love wine. Full open bar after eating…great!
You are right, I think it is best to have the full open bar after dinner as opposed to before because if people happen to not like the signature drink they are screwed all night. I’ve had signature drinks that are good but I know I would have hated to have been forced to drink it all night long without other choices (especially overly sugary drinks…bleh) Open bar works best if you’re looking for a party
Post # 10
I would be upset if the signature drink was the only choice during cocktail hour. Not everyone drinks mixed drinks and the best thing about a wedding is all the choices (either food or drink).
I would take to your hall again. I find it strange that they only carry $28 bottles of wine. This is probably wine that costs less than $5.
BTW- What is your signature drink?
Post # 11
Also, who wants drinks with dessert? After dinner I want a coffee, not a vodka and sprite.
Post # 12
I’d consider doing a beer and wine only bar for the duration, and welcoming guests to purchase liquor drinks, rather than signature drinks only for the first half and open bar for the second half. This is a good way to control costs but is far less confusing to the guest who may not think to check with the bar for changing rules halfway through.
Plus most folks want wine with dinner, and not a signature drink, if they’re going to be drinking at all. The only exceptions would be for specialty drinks that naturally pair with the food, for example serving mojitos or sangria with a Spanish (not Mexican) influenced menu. It just doesn’t “work” to have a fancy cosmo or something like that, to go with your tenderloin.
Post # 13
I’ve been so a lot of weddings that did that and it wasn’t tacky at all!
Post # 14
The signature drink is a punch with rum, it will be passed on platters to make it more elegant looking. I was thinking of giving it some sort of cheeky name.
The venue is at a private dinner club, so they try to be more fancy by offering more expensive wine. It’s the general manager who doesn’t want them to bring in wine that costs less than $28 a bottle, which I think is rediculous. But what are you going to do?
Post # 15
@loveus: I do! The reception doesn’t end after dinner/dessert so yeah…I’d prefer to have another drink if I’m going to be there until 11pm+
Post # 16
@caramellady: I think it sounds fine. Is there a way you could offer beer, wine, and the signature drink during cocktail hour? Only wine with dinner, and then the full open bar? Or just beer and wine until after dinner when you open up the full bar (liquor)?
If you think it would be confusing you could create a cute sign to place at the bar.