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Why Specialty Cocktails Save Money on your Bar

We are big fans of saving money without sacrificing the quality of your event. One of our favorite cost saving wedding and party bar tips is to serve a specialty cocktail, beer and wine only on your bar. For your party planning education, we thought it would be helpful to explain exactly why serving specialty cocktails save money over serving a full bar. Of course, if your specialty cocktail contains $300 tequila, on balance, you may not save money.

When you serve specialty cocktails, the potential ingredients needed for the bar are known and finite.  The caterer knows exactly which ingredients they will need. When you serve a full bar, however, the caterer must be able to serve an extremely wide variety of beverages, which increases the potential ingredients that the bartender must have access to. With that cornerstone explanation, let’s take a look at why serving specialty cocktails are less expensive than serving a full bar:

  1. It’s less expensive to purchase a lot of a few things than it is to purchase a few of many things. The caterer should be able to negotiate a bulk discount for your limited ingredient list.
  2. You will only pay for the glassware that you will definitely need. On a full bar, the caterer must bring a variety of glassware – tumblers, snifters, shot glasses, etc. – to satisfy all the possible drink requests. Your guests may or may not order beverages that require this variety of glassware.
  3. You only pay for the garnishes that you will definitely need. Same reasoning as #2. The cost savings is generally low but it does exist. When trying to cut costs, every little bit helps!
  4. You save money because your guests will drink less. When you create delicious, well-balanced specialty cocktails guests generally savor them for longer, which means that they drink less by the end of the night. Even if your guests drink a ton of the specialty cocktails, you will still save money because of #1-3.

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