Choosing the right beverages for your eventSelecting the right food for your event is important, but choosing the right beverages for your event is a detail you don’t want to overlook! Finding unique drinks to accompany your food can enhance the entire experience. If you’re trying to find the right beverage for your event, let these ideas inspire you:

Keep It Simple

What could be more simple than water dressed with elegant add-in’s? This is a cost-effective way to hydrate your guests. Simply add vibrant fruits and herbs to water pitchers for a hint of flavor and dash of color. A few favorites are:

  • Cucumber + strawberry + basil
  • Lemon + raspberry
  • Blackberry + mint
  • Cantaloupe + watermelon + honeydew
  • Pineapple + ginger

Creative Drinks

If you want to offer non-alcoholic beverages, consider choosing a creative, signature drink to serve. You can offer “the usual” soda, but here are some ideas beyond that:

  • Your favorite lemonade: raspberry, strawberry, etc.
  • Have an Italian soda bar where guests can mix their own flavors
  • Create up a signature punch that compliments the flavors of your food
  • Choose a drink that reflects you (for example, if you’re from Texas you might serve sweet tea)

Coffee & Tea Bar

Especially appropriate when your food selection is limited to dessert, a coffee and tea bar can be fun to create. You could hire local baristas to serve lattes, or keep it simple by serving brewed coffee and a selection of teas. Here are a few of our tips on creating an awesome coffee bar:

  • Serving coffee and tea from local companies always adds interest
  • Offer a variety of cream and sugar options
  • If you offer lattes, create a “signature drink” to offer but still keep standby flavors like vanilla or mocha

Beer & Wine

Many people enjoy beer and wine, so it’s hard to go wrong with these options. However, they do add cost! These tricks will help you save money while still offering your favorite beverages:

  • Offer a red and a white wine; Rieslings and Sauvignon Blanc are good white options, while Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz are good red options
  • Beer is a more cost-effective drink to serve
  • If your event is small, bottles or cans of beer in a cooler might be best
  • Contact local breweries for pricing on kegs

Cocktails

Attending an event with an open bar is fun, but is an expensive beverage option. However, depending on the event, this may be something important for you to include. If you want to serve cocktails, take these ideas into consideration:

  • Cut costs by serving a signature drink
  • If appropriate for your event, give each guest a limited number of drinks tickets they can redeem at the bar to keep costs down (and reduce the chance of intoxicated guests!)
  • Be sure you know your local state’s laws concerning licenses to sell and serve alcohol and comply with them
  • Don’t have an open bar; hire professionals

A few final words of advice on choosing the right beverages for your event…

  • Don’t feel like you have to offer everything! Choose the beverages that best accompany the food you’re having and the type of event you’re hosting
  • Keep in mind your audience when trying to choose the right beverages for your event: a family-oriented event could probably do without alcohol altogether; beer and wine at a work event might be appropriate
  • Feed your guests before serving them alcohol