Batch the Bar
Batch Cocktails Make for Breezy Service
Many couples are embracing the Batch Cocktail. Since they are pre-mixed at the beginning of the evening, they are easy to serve, even if we stop to garnish. They offer a consistent level of alcohol which makes it easier to offer responsible service. Batch Cocktails are great ways to get fancy with your bar menu without creating long lines.
It’s rare to go to a wedding featuring liquor that does not boast a Signature Drink. It’s not mandatory. If you offer a good selection of liquors everyone will find something they like. However, Signature Drinks are fun and give you the opportunity to showcase a drink that you love.
While Batching a Recipe may seem like it would lend itself to self-service, most vendors will not allow this practice. Besides you will still want a wedding pro by your side and behind your bar!
Batch Recipe for success:
- Use a recipe from a good book or blog, one you’ve tested.
- Buy Quality Mixers
- Make sure the recipe you give your bartender is batched out to the appropriate container size
- Label everything- especially if you have combined any ingredients already
- Make sure you’ve accounted for water in ice, bottled, or sparkling form. These will need to be added just before your event and not done ahead of time.
- Prep fruit the day-of to reduce oxidation time. Consider adding to our bartender’s prep time! Depending on how much needs to be done, the bill for an extra hour or two is totally worth not cutting up 100 strawberries, or wedging lemons and limes on your wedding day.
- Have more Ice than you think you need. Especially if you are having a summer wedding. We recommend 2-3 lbs. per guest. If you are using a separate caterer, ask them how much ice they will be bringing if they are providing non-alcoholic selections. It may make more sense to rent an ice trailer than to have it provided piecemeal from different vendors.
A Batch of Local Distilleries to add to your Bar:
Kick up your batch with one of these local distilleries. (Also – hello bachelor/bachelorettes!)
Mix up Your Mixers Menu
Almost more important than the liquor itself is developing a good menu of mixers. Batch Cocktails will help you offer a taste of some premium mixers without the runaway expense of having these items stocked for use in mixed drinks. We have some great local options to add a taste of WNC to your bar!
Local Beer and Wine FTW
A beer/wine only bar can be as complex or as simple as you would like to make it. A particularly popular menu for Asheville Brides and Grooms includes some of our locally brewed beer and cider options. WNC brews a wide variety of craft beer, and even some names everyone will recognize such as Sierra Nevada and New Belgium Brewing represent our area.
As always, our chief recommendation for weddings of 150 or less: Buy Bottles and Cans. Kegs can be finicky. It’s a bummer when there is beer left at the end of an event. Who is taking it back for the deposit? If there are bottles or cans at the end, you can simply store them and show up at every house party for the rest of the year as a hero!
It is a good idea to make some safe ‘easy drinking’ choices as well as bolder choices which may be the couples’ favorite, but may not suit everyone.
When you are buying beer, a balanced bar offering would include: one Pilsner or Blonde, one Pale Ale or IPA, and one Darker Beer like a Stout or Porter. Your wine selection should include at least one white and one red. Consider consulting a sommelier, or seller, once you’ve determined your menu to help you choose a good selection for your menu.
Personalize for Greater Sustainability
Using Rental? Buying Disposable Cups? Either way, you can cut down on the amount of ‘glassware’ you will need to provide if your guests can personalize their drinks. It’s not everyone’s aesthetic, but a koozie and a sharpie, or stickers, can greatly reduce the amount of abandoned drinks. Especially after 2020, who wants to pick up the wrong drink? Buy/ Rent less and encourage your guests to reuse their cups.
Here are quick links to some of our favorite local breweries, cideries and distributors: