As a luxury wedding planner, I am often asked what the critical factors are which will ensure that your wedding is the highlight of the season for your guests - in my opinion it's a combination of a fantastic setting, a beautiful ceremony, good food, good music, and of course, taking care of a number of additional thoughtful details to ensure that your guests have as fantastic a time as you from start to finish!
I could write another whole blog about the myriad of little details to consider to ensure that your guests enjoyment is as centre stage as your own (so keep your eyes peeled and I probably will!) but for now, with the approach of spring and summer weddings and the potential for outdoor drinks receptions, I’m going to focus on just one way to add some fun to your day …
It’s no secret that the bar is the most popular spot at any reception – it is where guests congregate, and where they visit throughout the day so as it’s going to be popular, you should ensure that what guests find there is imaginative and delicious! Below are just a few starter ideas for how to jazz up your drinks service to make it really unique and memorable.
"Come quickly, I am tasting the stars!"
So said Dom Pérignon, monk and cellar master, to whom the discovery of Champagne is attributed and who uttered these words (apparently!) upon first tasting it!
You can’t beat offering guests a glass of Champagne to toast your big day - just the very sound of the popping of corks is guaranteed to let guests know that the party has started! However, instead of serving your guests this precious nectar in standard flutes from the venue or caterer, have some fun by hiring in either elegant contemporary flutes or coupes or a range of pretty mismatching vintage glasses and presenting them on stylish trays, shelves or trolleys.
Cocktails are the ultimate way to get the party started!
You can either play it safe and serve a range of well-loved favourites appropriate for the season or ask your bar staff to come up with a couple of bespoke cocktails mixing your favourite flavours. And don’t forget to have fun with the names of your cocktails -
personalise them with a play on words which incorporates your own names or places you’ve been or include references to other aspects of your personal story or personalities which will amuse your guests. Having professional mixologists to include a bit of flair while mixing the cocktails also adds an element of theatre while guests are waiting for their drinks to be mixed.
A Mimosa is a colourful and fresh cocktail composed of one part champagne and one part chilled citrus juice and garnishes and when stylishly mixed and presented, is sure to be a hit with your guests! It is also a fairly inexpensive way of offering cocktails as it allows your Champagne allocation to go further. (For your reference, a Bucks Fizz is not the same thing, as it is one part Champagne, 2 parts orange juice, so is a weaker blend)
Beer on Tap Bar
The rise and rise of craft ales has meant that more and more couples wish to include either locally brewed or niche beers in their drinks offering. These days, you are no longer obliged to settle for a cask sitting on the bar – should you wish to go one step further, you can make it look good too! If you prefer serving you beer in bottles, there are a number of cool ways you can store them in ice and still present them in a really fun, innovative way, again even weaving personal touches into the display to relate it to your own relationship journey or hobbies.
For late night tipples, how about a beautiful Bourbon Bar stocked with interesting brands in addition to well loved classics. You could eiher leave it as as ‘help yourself’ bar or ask your barmen to incorporate whisky cocktails such as Old Fashioneds, Manhattans or Boulevardiers in their repertoire.
And not forgetting the all important soft drinks - a vital part of the drinks service and a contributing factor in ensuring your guests wellbeing is taken care of throughout the day.
Long gone are the days of dull tap water or plain orange juice being the only options, instead why not ensure that water is always available (perhaps served with cucumber or limes instead of lemon) but consider also creating a selection of colourful and mouthwatering ‘mocktails’ which look and taste as good as cocktails but without the alcohol. A ‘Nojito’ (great pun, eh!) for example consists of fresh mint, lime, syrup mixed with soda and fresh garnishes or perhaps a non alcoholic version of a Garden of Eden – elderflower, apple juice, lime and mint (no gin!).
I hope you’ll agree that a stylishly designed and well stocked bar is guaranteed to be a focal point of your day, both as a social hub and as a chic addition to your décor.
For more advice and tips and to discuss how I can help you make the wedding of your dreams a reality, contact me on Susannah@couture-events.co.uk - I look forward to hearing from you!
Photo credits: Pinterest