Monday, December 5, 2011

Beverage Guide - It can be tricky

Are you planning a shin-dig for the holidays? Or, at least having family over for dinner? You have the amount of food figured out, but ever find that planning for the right amount of beverages can sometimes be a little tricky. And, if your family is anything like mine, running out of booze is not an option...

In my head I have my own beverage calculator depending on the group I am planning the party for. When I meet with people to plan an event for the first time, when figuring out catering I ask them about their guests - not just do they like steak or salmon (PS unless you are planning an event for fisherman, stay away from salmon, there are other less controversial choices), but you should always ask these:
  • Are these people drinkers?
  • What are their drinks of choice?
  • Would beer and wine suffice or should some hard-alcohol options be available? (Will someone be loudly offended if the party does not have their preferred 7 year malt scotch?)
Remember, you do not have to break the bank when it comes to beverages if you plan smartly. I often find that if you can bring in your own alcohol and just pay the corkage that will usually save you some dollars. Additionally, you do not need to have a knock-down-all-incompasing-full-bar (plus, this encourages over consumption). Some basic mid-level selections with chosen mixers is most often perfect. You can even go the route of Signature Cocktails for the party - especially if these have creative names, people really respond to these. Another thing to consider is bubbly - chances are if you have this as an option people will drink this (especially the ladies) over anything else.

For those of you planning an event and are bottle-count stumped there are incredible website calculators out there that will help you figure out the amount lickity-split. (PS if you are hiring a caterer they should also be able to tell you - if they cannot, I would be a little weary, wink * wink * )

Here is one of my favorites and really user friendly, its from Table & Vine.

Table & Vine Party Planning Calculator

Let me know if you ever have any questions and/or get stuck - it is a tricky thing, this thing called booze.


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