Congratulations on your engagement! You’re now on the exciting journey of planning the perfect wedding. Among the myriad of decisions you’ll make, one of the most fun (and potentially challenging) is setting up your wedding bar. The bar can be a focal point of your celebration, and it’s essential to get it right. So, grab a glass of your favorite beverage, and let’s dive into the four things you should consider for your wedding bar.
1. Professional Beverage Services
First on your to-do list, is to find a professional catering service that will provide everything you need for your wedding bar. Hiring a bartending service can make the process efficient and ensure proper alcohol service by having all the necessary permits and licenses to serve alcohol at your wedding.
A professional service will typically provide bar glassware, setup, and takedown, along with staffing the bar and all the supplies to stock the bar like the alcohol, mixers, NA drinks, water, coffee, and ice. Lean on your vendors and their expertise in their field so you can focus on enjoying your day.
2. Open Bar vs. Cash Bar
The age-old question: open bar or cash bar? An open bar, or a hosted bar, is a style of bar service where the couple pays for the guests’ beverages throughout the night. They’ll love the convenience of being able to order a drink and not reach for their wallets. Plus, it’s a kind gesture to provide your guests for traveling and attending your wedding celebration.
Cash bars, on the other hand, can help you manage costs by having your guests pay for their own drinks, but may be less popular. You could find a middle ground by offering a hosted cocktail hour but go to a cash bar for the reception. It’s all up to you and how much you want to budget for this important aspect of your wedding celebration.
Regardless of the type of bar you go with, set your budget and stick with it. Your wedding budget is like a well-mixed cocktail—balancing the right ingredients ensures a great outcome. Keep the cost of your wedding bar in check by working with a professional caterer who will accurately stock your bar with all that is needed, cutting down on excess waste.
3. The Beverage Selection
First and foremost, let’s talk about the star of the show—the drinks! The choices you make for your wedding bar can set the tone for your entire event. Offer a variety of spirits like top-shelf liquors, wines, and craft-made beer so guests can have their favorite cocktail or libation.
A fun way to infuse your style into the bar is by creating signature cocktails that reflect your personalities or the theme of your wedding. For example, if your favorite cocktails are beach-themed, a tropical piña colada or a mojito can set the mood. Just remember to have non-alcoholic versions available for guests who don’t drink or are designated drivers for the night. Be sure to also offer a variety of non-alcoholic options like sparkling water, mocktails, and soft drinks.
Additionally, be mindful of your guests with dietary restrictions. Ensure there are options for those who prefer gluten-free, vegan, or other specialized beverages.
4. Show Off Your Style
Once you’ve worked with the bar caterer to develop your custom menu, create signature cocktails, and work out all the logistics, you can move on to styling the bar! Tie the bar into your wedding theme and décor by placing matching florals on the bar top, hanging string lights across the front, and even displaying custom-made signage. Your signage can match the wedding invite design and display your hosted bar items, signature cocktails, or just say thank you for being a part of your special day.
Planning your wedding bar can be as fun as a champagne toast with the right approach. By carefully considering your beverage selection, bar setup, legal considerations, and budget, you’ll be well on your way to creating a memorable and enjoyable experience for you and your guests.
At Warehouse Winery, we know a thing or two about tasty drinks. We have an expertise in this field like no other! Plus, we partner with the best catering companies in the Twin Cities area to ensure that you receive personalized attention during your planning stages and that your guests are provided with the utmost care on the day of your wedding celebration. Our catering partners are:
Remember, it’s your special day, and your wedding bar should reflect your personalities and preferences. Whether you’re serving craft cocktails, local brews, or a selection of fine wines, make it a reflection of your love story. Contact us to learn more about Warehouse Winery for your big day.