Drinks, alcoholic or otherwise, are a foundational element of any get together. No matter what kind of party you’re throwing, some manner of drinks will have to be provided. However, it’s a little more complicated than just throwing a few six packs in the fridge. Keep these points in mind when organizing drinks for your party.
Mixers, Mixers, Mixers
Even if you’re planning on heavy drinking at your event, you need a serious quantity of mixers. Buying an equal amount of alcohol and mixer means guests will end up mixing equal parts Jack and Coke. And if the mixers run out entirely, people may turn to straight shots.
Moreover, there are people who won’t want alcohol or will want to pace themselves. You need drinks for them too, and tap water doesn’t count. Providing non-alcoholic alternatives emphasizes your get-together is a social event, not just a night of drinking.
Stocking up a good supply of soda, juices, and pre-made mixers will help keep your event under control and your guests from overindulging.
Have Enough Glasses
One person, one glass is a recipe for disaster. When people switch drinks, they’ll want a fresh glass. And if they walk away from their drink, they may well grab another glass when they seek out a refill. Over the course of several hours, most people will go through multiple glasses.
This makes disposable cups practically a necessity. They take up minimal space when stacked, can be discarded as needed, and there’s no deed to pile them next to the dishwasher. They also aren’t breakable, which means fewer spilled drinks and a lack of picking broken glass up out of your carpet.
Let Guests Mix Their Own Drinks
It might sound cool to stand behind the bar mixing up sophisticated drinks for your friends. The problem is you end up trapped behind the bar all night rather than socializing. Sure, you’ll trade a few words with everyone who asks for a drink, but it won’t be meaningful conversation.
And since you now expect your guests to serve themselves, make sure the drinks are obvious. People don’t like poking through other people’s fridges trying to figure out what’s up for grabs. Putting available drinks in coolers is one way of indicating exactly where guests should be going. Pitchers of pre-mixed drinks also work well. It’s convenient for your guests and keeps them from mixing super-strong drinks.
Don’t Forget the Ice
Nearly every event can benefit from an extra bag of ice. Whether it’s to fill coolers or chill individual drinks, ice can be in high demand, even if the party is indoors. It’s also cheap and never goes bad, so if it isn’t used you can toss it in the freezer or just let it melt in the sink.
Keep the Drinkers from Driving
You may well end up with guests who have no business behind the wheel of a car. Have a plan ahead of time, such as whether you’ll suggest a taxi, Uber or Lyft. And maybe the guest can’t go home at all, in which case you’re going to need crash space. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Just be sure you know where a couple extra pillows and blankets are in case someone needs to sleep it off.
Every party plan needs to devote time to drinks as well as the aftermath of drinking. The plan doesn’t have to be fancy, but it does need to be thorough. Consider all the needs needing to be met. And think about yourself as well. Simplify arrangements as much as possible so you can enjoy the party as much as everyone else.