3rd October 2013 . Insider Know-How Weddings

A Well-Stocked Wedding Bar… Part 2

Welcome DIY-ers! If this is the first time you’ve come across The Utter Blog, chances are you’re here because you’re wondering just how much booze you should be buying for your forthcoming wedding. Well, firstly hello and congratulations on your pending nuptials, and secondly, I hope that I’m able to provide some of the answers you’re looking for. If you’ve been here before… you know the score.

Now if you haven’t read Part 1 of A Well-Stocked Wedding Bar, then go. Go right now, have a good read and then come back for Part 2. In Part 1 I broke down the key things to think about when stocking your own wedding bar- what drinks to provide, how much to buy (using a friend’s wedding as an example) and where to buy from. Oh and there were a few pictures of reeeally cool DIY bars too, just for inspiration and pinning purposes. Obvs.

But today I am providing a breakdown of my own wedding bar. Number-crunching stylee.

Are you ready?

I spent far too long creating this on easel.ly

I spent far too long creating this on easel.ly

It’s important to take numbers like these in to consideration when stocking your own bar. As weddings go, ours was relatively short. Although my friends party hard, the evening part didn’t really get going until 8pm-8.30pm meaning we were only truly partying for four hours. If your wedding breakfast is scheduled to be over by 6pm with a home time of two in the morning… well you’re probably going to need considerably more.

On the other hand my wedding was practically child-free, meaning the majority of our guests were drinking alcohol. If you are having 100 guests of which 20 or 30 are children, then the numbers below may be a little excessive.

So just how much did I buy then? And how much did we actually drink? Fortunately for you I’ve created this handy little bar chart which should reveal all…

Screen Shot 2013-10-03 at 15.39.22

Look at me! Technical wizardry or what?

So what does this tell us? Well, the Coronas served straight after the ceremony and the keg of ale that was opened in the evening were completely drunk dry. As was the vodka and most of the gin.

The white wine was more popular than the red (as I’d predicted, hence the extra bottles bought), but I was still surprised with just how much red was left. And fortunately for me I still have a crate of my favourite Prosecco sitting in my garage awaiting a special occasion or two.

But the biggest surprise was the bottled beers bought for the evening. As is always the way when hosting a party, Paul and I power-struggled over how much booze to buy. I notoriously under-cater and Paul notoriously over-caters, although he hates to admit it. However, with Paul determined for the bar not to run dry (rightly so), he bought what even he considered a lot of Coors Light… and then bought some more. We had 420 bottles in the end (35 boxes of 12), but were still more than a little gobsmacked when we arrived back at the barn the following morning to be greeted with around 27 boxes of unopened Coors Light. That means only 100 odd bottles were actually drunk!

Turns out the spirits proved pretty popular in the evening, which makes me so glad we’d opted to have them available. Paul may have massively over-catered on the beer front, but it was he who encouraged me to buy a fourth bottle of vodka a few days before ‘just in case’. Credit when credit’s due and all that…

And for those who literally don’t know where to start when it comes to soft drinks, this is what we bought and drank:

Screen Shot 2013-10-03 at 15.56.25

In terms of the soft drinks, it really was a case of guesswork for me. I overbought on everything but ended up taking some of the pop (coke, diet coke and lemonade) back, as well as the Schloer which was meant to be served with dinner and forgotten about (whoops).

Something else to take in to consideration if your venue is dry hire/blank canvas is to provide mineral water, as drinking water may not be available. I estimated that our ten tables would get through around three bottles each during dinner and then the same again throughout the evening, and this proved to be plenty.

So there you go! My Well-Stocked Wedding Bar in numbers. I hope those of you that have come here via a ‘how much alcohol to buy for wedding’ type Google search have found this helpful. I know I would have loved to have found something like this when I was planning my DIY day.

One final nugget of advice before I leave you to enjoy the weekend:

I spent an enjoyable few months searching for the right wine to serve with our wedding breakfast. I wanted to serve a decent white and red that would please the discerning palette… whilst pleasing my purse strings too. In the end I opted for a Chilean Sauvignon Blanc and a spanish Syrah that went down an absolute storm, and then bought a selection of mix and match ‘3 for £10’ wines for the evening when people weren’t so fussy.  Sadly this is the stuff I’m left with now, having bought them too far in advance to return to the supermarket.

I’m not a big red wine fan anyway, and this stuff is rank! So the lesson learnt? Don’t cheap out too much if you’re planning on keeping the leftovers. There’s only so much spaghetti bolognese a girl can cook, y’know…?

Happy Weekend everybody!

Sama xxx

Sama x

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2 Responses to “A Well-Stocked Wedding Bar… Part 2”

  1. Pete

    Thank you so so much for this Sama.

    I am the process of making a list for our DIY/open bar wedding. It is LONG a long way off (2017) but I’m thinking ahead (got my priorities all wrong!). Found the guide very useful. We have 150 guests but having a later ceremony and a hog roast in the evening. No children and all our friends are big drinkers. Great guide to use. I will be making a wine run to France and use mysupermarket.

    Thank you very much.



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