If you're planning a wedding and can't get your head around stocking the bar, use this wedding alcohol calculator. Not only will it help you find out how much alcohol for a wedding reception is right, but will also make the planning process much easier and bring you closer to organizing the wedding of your dreams.
How to use the wedding alcohol calculator?
Using the wedding alcohol calculator is simple. Choose which types of alcohol you want to serve and follow these instructions to find out how much you will need to get for your wedding reception.
- FOR WINE:
- Put in the number of wine drinkers and the calculator will return the total number of standard 750ml wine bottles, as well as the conventional division of the number into white and red wine bottles. It is most common to serve 50% white wine and 50% red wine, but feel free to modify this number to your liking, for example by serving 75% of white and 25% of red if your wedding is in the summer. The usual way of calculating the number of wine bottles is calculated by dividing the number of guests by 2.15 and rounding it up.
- FOR CHAMPAGNE:
- Champagne is an obligatory drink for a wedding reception, as it is typically used for toasts. To get the number of standard 750ml bottles you need to buy for toasts, put in the number of champagne drinkers and choose the champagne type. For standard champagne, the number of guests is divided by 9, and for sparkling wine by 7. The result is rounded up. Sparkling wine is lighter, so a serving is usually bigger and people are more likely to go for refills, which is why you want to have a little bit more of it.
- FOR BEER:
If beer is served at your wedding reception, the general rule is to have one beer per guest per hour of the party. To calculate the number of beers put in the number of beer drinkers and the number of hours the reception will last. The wedding alcohol calculator will multiply the numbers and round them up, giving you the number of beer servings you need.
If many guests are going to drink beer, buying it in kegs might be better value for money. Make sure to check whether going for single bottles is profitable.
If you want to impress your guests and happen to have some time to spare, consider serving home brewed beer rather than a commercial brand.
- FOR VODKA:
- Vodka is the go-to wedding liquor in many European countries. If it's served at your reception party, the most common way of calculating the right amount is getting half a liter per every guest who drinks it. Put in the number of vodka drinkers, and the wedding alcohol calculator will return the number of 0.5-liter bottles of vodka that you need to buy.
Notes on using the wedding alcohol calculator
The amount of alcohol consumed by your guests might vary depending on a number of factors. For example, if you're having a garden wedding on a hot summer day, you need to take into account that most people will opt for white wine, while red wine and dark beer could not be very popular since they tend to be quite heavy. Although the wedding alcohol calculator uses equations that take into account both heavy and nondrinkers, make sure to estimate the number of drinkers as precisely as possible to get the perfect amount of alcohol for the wedding reception and avoid both wasting and shortages.
Usually, alcohol is sold in liters all over the world. If you need to convert the unit, consider using the volume converter to do so.
Using the wedding alcohol calculator - example
Let's go through an example to understand the process of calculating how much alcohol for a wedding you need even easier.
Our imaginary couple, Bob and Alice, are planning to invite 200 people to their wedding. They know that 100 people will drink wine. Let's calculate the right amount of wine to buy:
total number of wine bottles = 100 / 2.15 = 46.51 After rounding up we get 47 bottles of wine. Since it's customary to serve 50% of white and 50% of red wine, we need to raise it to the next even number and divide the total number of bottles by two.
bottles of red wine = bottles of white wine = 48 / 2 = 24
57 guests declared they will opt for beer. The reception party will last for 6 hours.
beers = 57 * 6 = 342
The remaining guests declared they will not be drinking anything but the customary champagne toast. Since the wedding takes place in the summer, Bob and Alice want to go for lighter sparkling wine. Let's calculate the number of sparkling wine bottles.
champagne bottles = 200 / 7 = 28.6 To make sure no one end up without a toast, we round the number up to 29.
Now we know that for their wedding Alice and Bob need 24 bottles of white and red wine each, 342 bottles of beer and 29 bottles of sparkling wine.
Other kinds of alcohol
Wine, beer, champagne, and vodka are the four most popular liquors used at wedding receptions. However, it is not uncommon to serve other additional drinks, in case some of the guests don't like the primary alcohol of the party. Luckily, most people tend to stick to whatever liquor is provided, so there is no need to buy as much of these additional ones as you buy of the main drinks.
Here is a rough estimation of how much other alcohols you could buy for 100 guests:
- Apple cider - 4-5 liters
- Gin - 2-3 liters
- Whiskey - 1 liter
- Scotch - 1 liter
- Bourbon - 1 liter
- Tequila - 1 liter
- Dry vermouth - 1 liter
- Sweet vermouth - 1 liter.
Some additional tips for wedding planning
We have several other tools you might find useful during your wedding planning process. After all, calculating how much alcohol for the wedding reception is needed is not the only thing you need to do! The most important part is the rings, so use our ring size converter to make sure they are the perfect fit. You can also use the lighting calculator to be certain that the wedding venue looks its absolute best. It is crucial to prepare transportation for the guests in advance so that everyone gets to the venue comfortably and on time - the drive time calculator will be of great help for you. You might also want to consider having the blood alcohol calculator ready during the party, to make sure everyone gets home safe and sound.