There are a lot of different elements that help make a successful party, from good food to good company. But one thing you need to make sure you don’t neglect is the drinks. You need to make sure you have plenty of different types of drinks, and that you can serve them in bulk without them going warm or flat. Here is how to organise drinks for a party, no matter how many guests are coming.
Work out how much stock you need
Firstly, you need a rough estimate of how much drink you and your guests will consume. You should think about:
- The time of day – if you’re having people over for a lunchtime event, they’ll tend to drink less than something that goes on into the evening
- What people will be drinking – people tend to take longer to drink stronger drinks like whiskey or vodka, while wine or beer can be drunk fairly quickly, especially on hot nights
- Food – if you’ll be serving drinks with dinner, you should think about how much wine you need, as well as things like pre- and post-dinner drinks
Then you can work out the number of drinks per person per hour, times that by the hours you’ll hold the event, then work out numbers from that. Bear in mind, a bottle of wine holds about five glasses of red, white or rose, while a bottle of sparkling wine or champagne will fill about six flutes.
Keep drinks at their best
One challenge of hosting a large gathering is keeping drinks fresh and in good condition. Nobody wants to drink lukewarm beer that has been out for a while! It’s worth using co2 gas cylinders, hooked up to a pump, to serve beer from a keg, and you can let guests help themselves, so you aren’t running round doing top ups. You could also hire a large wine cooler to store bottles and have an area with glasses, so people can simply top up when they need to.
Cocktails can be trickier, as they are usually made individually. You could make batches and serve them in drink dispensers, which makes life easier and means your guests make less mess.
Hosting a party can be hard work but organising the drinks doesn’t have to be! You simply need to make sure there’s enough to go round and that people can help themselves, so you aren’t playing the role of waiting staff all night.