General Question

mcg_katrina23's avatar

Serving 400 guests, how much alcohol do I need to buy?

Asked by mcg_katrina23 (3points) March 20th, 2008

If I am having 400 people attend my wedding reception, how many bottles should I get to make sure I don’t run out? And any ideas on how much pop to get?

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11 Answers

Dine's avatar

Try to make a deal with some store,to bring back every full bottle left,and they will back Your money.

syz's avatar

I think a professional caterer would be able to give you a pretty accurate idea of how much to buy.

chaosrob's avatar

If you’re stocking a bar for an event, an average cocktail has about 50ml of liquor in it. Assume people will have two drinks. That’s 400 * 2 * 50 = 40,000 ml or 40 l. Liquor is sold commonly in 750 ml bottles, so 40/.75 is about 55 bottles of liquor. Split it up among a popular gin, vodka and whiskey. Don’t forget enough mixers. (Assume about 125 ml of mixer per drink.) (And ice.)

If you’re buying champagne, assume about 6 glasses per bottle, and assume people will want 2–3 glasses.

If you’re buying beer, buy bottled and assume people will have 2–3.

Call your local package store, too. A professional liquor distributor will also be able to help you refine your estimate.

ben's avatar

You might want to play with Kegulator. It’s a neat tool for making beer consumption estimates.

robmandu's avatar

May I come, too?

cake7's avatar

@ Ben i was going to suggest the kegulator also. : ) This is a great app. it tells you how much beer, ice and cups. it’s the best.

Angelina's avatar

We need more info. What are you serving? Wine, beer, champagne and full liquor bar?

Are you hiring bartenders to serve the liquor? If so, you can ask them, they’d have a professional opinion.

gooch's avatar

Where are you from? Different regions consume different amounts.

TheGreenBrideGuide's avatar

The following is an excerpt from my book, The Green Bride Guide – please visit for more helpful tips and resources.

Alcohol Buying Guidelines

The amount of alcohol you need at a wedding can vary significantly. Generally speaking, daytime receptions require less alcohol than nighttime events, and younger crowds drink more than older crowds. You know your guests best, so you will be the best judge of how much (and what) they are likely to drink. A general rule of thumb is to provide your guests with one drink per person per hour – or four to five drinks per person for an evening affair. If you want to offer a limit bar with wine, beer and champagne, use the rule of five to calculate how many drinks you need, then divide the total using the following guidelines:

A bottle of Champagne = 6–8 flutes
A bottle of wine = 5 glasses
A beer = 1 drink
A liter of liquor = 18 drinks

Many liquor stores allow you to return unopened beverages, which means you can err on the safe side without penalty. If you are having a full bar, use the following buying guidelines per 100 people:

Beer = 2 cases (48 beers)
Champagne = 1 ½ cases (18 bottles)
Red wine = 1 case (12 bottles)
White wine = 1 ½ cases (18 bottles)
Whisky = 1–2 liters
Bourbon = 1–2 liters
Gin = 2 liters
Scotch = 3 liters
Light rum = 1 liter
Vodka = 6 liter
Tequila = 1 liter
Dry vermouth = 2 bottles
Sweet vermouth = 2 bottles

MaryW's avatar

I would have the booze catered and enjoy the rest of the planning and especially the party.

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