How Much Alcohol Should I Buy?

alcohol tips
Photo by: Erin Morrison Photography

There are so many lists that you have to manage before the Big Day! One of the most common questions that we see is how much alcohol should you provide for your wedding. We’ve provided these tips so that you can have a fun and classy wedding!


  • It is a good idea to serve 1 drink per person per hour of the event. In other words, one guests will have up to 5 glasses of wine (1 drink x 5-hour cocktail hour and reception).
  • During the winter months, your might want 60% of wine to be red and 40% to be white because red wine isn’t chilled. During the summer months, your guests might prefer a chilled white wine so be sure to have 60% white wine and 40% red wine.
  • In lieu of a full bar, we suggest you provide a couple of signature drinks. Not only are different liquors more expensive, but you also have to provide all the garnishes such as: orange juice, cherries, club soda, etc. Also keep in mind that the larger variety that you offer, the more likely you will have to lug all of that alcohol back home.
  • NO SHOTS and NO KEG STANDS! You want your wedding to be a classy affair, not some frat party. Your friends and family are all there to celebrate you so be respectful of them in turn.
  • Limit the bar to no more than five hours. Anything longer and people have a tendency to have way too many drinks and are having to find another way to go home.
  • Tennessee law states that the bar must be closed at least 30 minutes before the wedding is over. While it is law in Tennessee, we believe that this is a good overall rule of thumb!
  • Be mindful of what the wedding party is drinking while getting ready for the Big Day. We recommend not drinking liquor before the ceremony. The weather can have a disastrous effect when combined with alcohol. The last thing that you want is a bridesmaid or groomsman collapsing in the middle of the ceremony because they drank too much.


We hope these tips will help you find the perfect amount for your wedding!


Photo by: Leah Moyers Photography at Cardinal's Nest Weddings & Events | Erin Morrison Photography


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