Drinks for wedding reception

Drinks for wedding reception

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Drinks for wedding reception

Just as you’re about to give yourself a pat on the back for becoming the ultimate wedding planner, a thought ambushes you right before you drift off to dreamland: “What’s the first drink you’ll graciously thrust into your guests’ hands?”
Drinks aren’t just there to stop your guests from parching; they’re your secret weapon to prove you’ve really put some elbow grease into creating the most talked-about wedding of the year. From the cocktail hour and those endless speeches to the wedding breakfast (which, by the way, is rarely breakfast) and the never-ending evening reception, there are countless moments to wow your guests into submission. So, here you go, 9 refreshing wedding drinks to ensure your guests‘ thirst is quenched and their spirits high – because, obviously, what’s a wedding without a bespoke drink menu?

9 Refreshing Wedding Drink Ideas

For the Drinks Reception

Your inaugural toast as a wedded duo signals to your guests that it’s game time. Opting for the highbrow route? Ah, a connoisseur of the finer things—I salute you! Are we on the same wavelength? Summon your mixologist to craft a pair of tailor-made wedding cocktails. Whether it’s a his and hers, his and his, or hers and hers, we’re setting the stage a memorable drink reception for the happy couple. Elegance with a twist—because who says you can’t have a dash of sophistication with your love potion?

Serving up a signature cocktail as guests waltz in from the ceremony isn’t just for show. It sets the tone, injects a dash of fun, and whispers a hint of your personality into your wedding day.

What cocktails to have can be led by a few factors: Could it simply be the bride and groom’s favourites? Or perhaps led by the season or by local ingredients to your reception venue. Whatever it is, here are some wedding cocktails to ignite your imagination.

wedding guests

Some popular cocktails to consider:

The Moscow Mule

To make a Moscow Mule that’ll impress your wedding guests more than Aunt Mabel’s only fans account: mix vodka, spicy ginger beer, and lime juice, served in a cool copper mug to keep it chilled. Why choose this drink for your wedding? It’s not just because it’s as easy as saying “I do” (if you’re sure about that). It’s because the Moscow Mule adds an effortlessly cool vibe to your celebration, blending sophistication with a kick of ginger spice that’s as exciting as a surprise celebrity guest. It’s the perfect drink to say, “We’re here to celebrate love, and we’re ready to spice things up.”

Aperol Spritz

Searching for refreshing wedding day drinks under the summer sun? A summer wedding calls for beverages that not only quench thirst but also taste amazing and are easy to prepare. Mix one part Aperol with one part prosecco and one part soda, garnish with an orange slice, serve in a highball glass, and watch your guests revel in cool sophistication! These crowd-pleasers are quickly knocked up and supped during photos whilst the string quartet looks on longingly!

The Marital Mojito

The classic Mojito, vibrant, harmonious, and full of joyful moments shared with loved ones. “Yeah, whatever – mines empty, can I have another?”

This popular cocktail is perfect for wedding receptions and requires a few simple ingredients: white rum, lime juice, sugar, mint leaves, and soda water. Get creative with your presentation by using personalized mason jars or adding a twist with different flavours like raspberry or strawberry. Not only is it a delicious drink to sip on during the reception, but it also serves as a refreshing palate cleanser between courses at the wedding breakfast. It can also be served “virgin-style” to keep the kids happy and stop Nanna from passing out on the dance floor.

The Long Island Iced Tea

Hey you – you worried about a wedding party without the party? The thought of a bare dance floor keeps you up at night? I’m not advocating getting all your guests completely smashed before the wedding breakfast but…think of the photos!

Enter the secret weapon: a cocktail cunningly crafted with a mix of spirits that could start its own bar, discreetly topped with cola to conceal its true nature.

And with no sign of food yet, this drink will ensure your guest’s inhibitions are tossed aside 🙂

Joking aside, it packs a punch so perhaps we serve this up just before the live band to ensure the group photos are as civilised as possible!

A Swanky Wedding Drinks Reception?


Sipping on a vintage brut post-ceremony oozes a type of sophistication that’s usually reserved for the special aisle at Waitrose. Yes, it’s customary to pop the cork for the speeches, but for those aiming to elevate their celebration to “posh” without crossing into pretentious territory, champagne is the ace up your sleeve. Looking to add a dash of flair? Naturally. Elevate it to a Kir Royale with a splash of Chambord or Crème de Cassis. Trust me, it’s a game-changer. Cheers to that!

Drinks for wedding reception


Ah, the quintessential British garden party in a glass, making its grand entrance at your wedding. A pitcher of Pimm’s isn’t just a drink; it’s a British summer encapsulated – right up there with the ever-reliable unpredictable weather and the national sport of queueing with grace.

Whipping up this legendary concoction requires Pimm’s No. 1, lemonade (or, for the daring souls, a daring dash of ginger ale to the mix), topped off with a colourful ensemble of strawberries, cucumber, orange, and mint for that photo-ready garnish. Presenting this in large pitchers transforms your wedding into a self-serve fiesta, fostering a beautifully communal and chilled-out atmosphere.

Consider it your official kickoff to matrimonial bliss – a classic tradition with a playful twist, ensuring your wedding is the talk of the season (just add your professional magician for some big day entertainment just to be sure).

wedding drinks reception

Wedding Venue Soft Drinks & Mocktails

Consider our noble designated drivers and enlightened souls — they deserve more than just an afterthought in the beverage department. It’s not just about relegating them to a lifetime supply of apple or orange juice. Elevate your non-alcoholic offerings to show these heroes they’re not just tolerated, but celebrated. Ditch the mundane for the magnificent with a selection of non-alcoholic drinks that promise to be as entertaining as the balloon modeller creating poodle sculptures in the corner.

Non-alcoholic beverages like Strawberry Lemonade or Raspberry Mint Julep – they’re not just drinks, they’re a statement. Sure, they taste amazing, but let’s be honest, half the appeal is in their ability to dress up for the occasion with garnishes and wedding-themed bling. It’s as if they’re saying, “Who needs alcohol when you can look this fabulous and still remember the night?”

wine at wedding

Wedding Drinks during the Wedding Breakfast

It’s standard practice to have a choice of red wine and white during the meal as well as water. Depending on your venue package, this will be included and so it’s worth double-checking the drink options before you go ordering extra bottles of wine. Some venues charge corkage fees, so again, investigate what’s what before your wedding.

For the toasts, you’ll elegantly present champagne or, for those of us counting coins, prosecco, and for the truly thrifty among us, sparkling water. This isn’t a critique, mind you. The cost of weddings can skyrocket faster than a rat-up a drain pipe. Personally, as long as there’s a fizz in every glass, skipping the champagne in favour of sprucing up your evening entertainment seems wise. The memory of a side-splitting mind reader or close-up magician will linger far longer than the taste of any sparkling wine.

drinks reception

A Winter Wedding?

Mulled Wine

A great drink for after the wedding ceremony or into the evening celebrations, mulled wine, anyone?

This is a great idea to keep the cockles of your guests toasty and warm. It can be batch-made so all you need is a large ladle, some empty glasses and we’re in business. It’s particularly festive too so ideal for Christmas weddings.

As the sun sets and we transition to the evening festivities, consider the brilliance of a “pimp your prosecco” station. It’s an interactive cocktail-making extravaganza that not only quenches the thirst of your guests but also entertains them. It’s the epitome of multitasking brilliance.

Or, if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, why not enlist the services of a professional mixologist? They can conjure up a signature cocktail or two as guests make their grand entrance into the evening. It’s like having a wizard behind the bar, minus the wand but with all the flair.

Group Shots

As the sun sets and evening guests start to trickle in, sober as judges, your day crowd is already looking to elevate the party.

Someone mentions group shots, you look up, it’s Nanna, standing there with a thirsty look!

Want to dazzle without denting your wallet? Serve them apple juice with a hint of star anise artfully caressed around the rim. They’ll be none the wiser!

And for a dash of merriment, why not introduce a spirited round of beer pong? It’s the perfect way to entertain your night owls while keeping the vibes high and the costs low.

Typically shots seen at a wedding include, baileys, tequila and whiskey! If you don’t like those, check with Nanna. She’s got half a bottle of sambuca in her bag.

wedding drinks

Evening Wedding Reception Drinks

Old Fashioned

As night falls and the cigars start to smoulder, it’s time to let those ties hang a bit looser and dial up the sophistication. Fancy a Smokey Old Fashioned? In the grand lineup of wedding beverages, this one is the GOAT. Perfect for adding a touch of warmth to your winter wedding it’s not just a drink; it’s a statement. Grab your photographer and raise those glasses on your special day!

Espresso Martini

Your wedding is quite the adventure – a mix of highs and lows, packed with excitement and unexpected moments. As we approach the grand finale of what could easily be dubbed the wedding of the century, we realize there’s still a good chunk of time left, and your playlist is ambitiously lengthy. Now, what we need is a drink that embodies the essence of matrimonial bliss while packing enough punch to leave even a titan like Erling Haaland impressed. Enter the espresso Martini: its creamy texture, robust flavour, and promise of keeping the party alive well into the wee hours making it the undisputed champion of wedding beverages.

How to make an espresso martini

Drinks for wedding reception

Final thoughts

In wrapping up, let’s be clear: Wedding drinks are hardly there just to stop your guests from parching up; they’re essentially the life of the party in liquid form. Think of them as the fun-loving, slightly flamboyant cousins of water, bringing their own mix of flair and personality to the table. Opting for a “pimp your prosecco” station? That’s not just bubbly; that’s bubbly with a Ph.D. in Party. And a Smokey Old Fashioned? That’s not your grandad’s drink; it’s a sophisticated charmer with a mysterious past.

Each choice of beverage is like picking the right background music—it’s all about setting the scene and making sure your guests are so impressed, they’ll still be talking about it at their own weddings. These drinks aren’t mere refreshments; they’re the party planners you didn’t know you hired, making sure your wedding is less of a formal gathering and more of the bash of the year.

In the grand scheme of things, whether you’re shaking up a signature cocktail or choosing a mocktail that’s as complex as your relationship status, it’s all about showing your guests a good time. It’s a reflection of your dedication to throwing a celebration that’s as unforgettable as it is fun because, at the end of the day, aren’t we all just looking for a good story to tell?

About Chris

Magician and aficionado of fine cocktails, Chris stands out as the go-to authority on weddings—his insights are best savoured with a hint of scepticism, a twist of lemon, and a generous pour of tequila. He’s attended more weddings than Linda Wolfe (Google it), providing unmatched wedding entertainment during the drinks reception. His goal? To ensure your guests are having as fantastic a time as you are, minus the cheesy magic tricks. Cheers to that!

professional magician