Bar Basics


Water & Non-Alcoholic Beverages

On the average, expect guests to drink 2 drinks or servings of a nonalcoholic beverage the first hour and 1 each hour thereafter. Remember, people drink more when the weather is warm.


Bar Drinks

If you plan to serve bar drinks, you should allow 1.5 ounces of liquor for each drink. This will yield approximately 16 drinks from each 750-milliliter bottle of liquor.


Serving Wine

When serving wine, plan on one 750-milliliter bottle for every two guests (one bottle for every 3 to 4 guests if the wine will be served only during a meal). If you prefer to buy the large 1.5-liter bottle of wine, it will serve 4 guests (6 to 8 guests if served only during a meal).


Ordering Beer

When ordering beer for a party, allow about 12 ounces per guest for every half hour to hour. You might want to buy a keg if you have a large crowd.

How to Stocked Your Bar for a Party

Keep your guests happy with a nice selection of beverages.  When planning your shopping list, consider the type of event, time of day, location, onsite amenities, staff and your guests.

Basic Shopping List

  • Water –  Be sure your guests stay hydrated and if your budget allows offer sparkling water
  • Sodas and Juices – Offer a simple selection that can be served alone or mixed
  • Wine, Beer and Champagne - a good staple to serve at any party
  • Mixers - Plan on plenty of tonic water and include diet sodas and juices
  • Lemons & Limes - Prepare a head of time have slices and twists handy
  • Olives & Maraschino Cherries – A nice touch at a bar station
  • Ice - Buy enough so you don’t run out.  Plan to have more when the weather is hot
  • Cocktail Napkins – Buy extra if serving passed hors d’oeuvres

Full Bar Set Up

  • Gin
  • Tequila
  • Bourbon
  • Sweet Vermouth
  • Dry Vermouth
  • Rum
  • Irish Whiskey
  • Vodka
  • Scotch
  • Martini Shaker
  • Martini Olives
  • Bar Towels
  • Long Mixing Spoon
  • Ice Bucket & Scoop or Tongs
  • Wine Opener
  • Toothpicks
  • Straws
  • Umbrellas
  • Sugars
  • Salt
  • Blender