Tips for planning your wedding reception
Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! At New Castle Liquors, we know how fun — and difficult — it can be to plan what might just be the most important day of your life so far. Let us help reduce your stress a little with these suggestions for planning the beverages at your reception.
When it comes to the toast, you have several options to choose from. While French champagne is often the first bubbly to come to mind, sparkling wine, Prosecco from Italy and Cava from Spain all fit the occasion perfectly and are almost always less expensive. This day is all about you, so choose whatever makes you happy; your guests will raise their glasses to celebrate your vows no matter what!
While planning your purchases, keep these guidelines in mind. Of course, you know your crowd better than anyone, so you can always adjust based on what you know. Typically, though, you can expect each guest to consume roughly two drinks during the first hour and one each hour after that. Here’s a rough breakdown of what your guests will likely prefer:
- 50 percent wine
- 30 percent beer
- 20 percent mixed drinks
If you decide to leave out mixed drinks, plan on 60 percent wine and 40 percent beer. If your guests are mostly in their twenties, however, you may want to increase the percentage of beer. Consumption will also depend on the weather; if it is hot outside, red wine will be much less popular while beer and white wine will be much more popular. People also tend to drink more when the weather is warm, so be sure to plan accordingly.
Now, it’s time to consider which types of each drink you’ll serve. For wine, you should choose at least one red and one white. We offer a 10 percent discount when you buy wine by the case, so it’s easy to stock up. You can even mix and match within each case if you decide on multiple varieties!
For beer, choose at least two types, one light and one dark or strong, so that your guests have options. You can of course choose to include more variety, especially if you know your guests are craft beer drinkers. Think through whether you would like to purchase cans and bottles or a keg. Bottles and cans can be more expensive, and some people think the beer doesn’t taste as fresh this way. Kegs, on the other hand, require a tap system (which you can rent from us). Keep in mind that keg leftovers only last a day or two, while cans and bottles have a much longer shelf life.
If you decide to serve mixed drinks, be sure to include whiskey, gin and vodka at the bar; next in line would be rum and tequila. Some couples also choose to provide several big-batch cocktails instead of a full bar, which helps keep things simple. If you go the full bar route, be sure to remember the mixers, such as tonic water, club soda, orange and cranberry juices, and lemons and limes for garnishes. Lastly, don’t forget to buy plenty of ice! Again, you can always tailor your offerings based on what you know about your guests.
Information to Help You Plan
- 750ml bottle = 5 glasses (5 oz.)
- 1.5L bottle = 10 glasses
- Case = 12 750ml or 6 1.5L bottles
- 1 case = 60 servings
Sparkling Wine for a Toast
- 750ml bottle = 8 toast portions (3 oz.)
- Case = 96 3-oz. servings
- 750ml bottle = 17 standard mixed drinks (1.5 oz. liquor)
- 1.75L bottle = 41 standard mixed drinks
- 1 bottle or can is one 12-oz. serving
- ¼-barrel keg: 7.75 gallons = 82 servings
- ½-barrel keg: 15.5 gallons = 164 servings
What You Need to Know
How many adults will attend? _____________
How long is your wedding reception? ______________
Remember to take into account the weather, the average age of your guests and what you know about their preferences. People also tend to drink less during daytime or Sunday weddings, so you might want to round down if that’s the case. Don’t include kids in your count for this.
Example 1: 100 adults for a 3-hour reception = 400 servings
- Beer & wine only: 48 bottles of wine (240 servings) and 160 servings of beer
- Beer, wine & spirits: 40 bottles of wine, 120 servings of beer, five 750ml bottles of spirits
Example 2: 250 adults for a 4-hour reception = 1,250 servings
- Beer & wine only: 150 bottles of wine (750 servings) and 500 servings of beer
- Beer, wine & spirits: 125 bottles of wine, 375 servings of beer, 15 750ml bottles of spirits
We’re Here to Help!
There are more businesses in New Castle that can help you plan your wedding:
Afternoon Delight Bakery — 602-571-4356
An Exquisite Design Flowers and Gifts — 970-984-2181
Eventos Bridal Shop and Tuxedo Rental – 970-984-
Speckled Feather Mercantile — 970-573-6378 (messages only)
Many of our restaurants can help with catering as well.
New Castle Liquors is a full-service liquor store in New Castle, Colorado, that’s known for its selection, competitive pricing and friendly service. So friendly, in fact, that we were honored with a Silver Locals’ Choice Award for Best Liquor Store in the Glenwood Springs Post Independent’s annual awards in 2016.
We’d love to help you plan your special day. Our hours are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. Please contact Mandy Gauldin at 970-984-3707 to get started.