Entertaining

Use this handy guide to help calculate how much and what type of wine you’ll need for your event.

HOW MUCH

Cocktail Parties

½ bottle of wine/person for each 2-hour period.
If your event begins before 5pm, or you are also serving liquor or beer:
½ bottle of wine/person per 3-hour period.

Self-Service for Guests

If guests will serve themselves, add 10% to your estimate.

Dinner Events

Plan on 1.5 glasses per course per person.
Each 750ml bottle will provide five 5-oz. servings.
For each course multiply
[# of guests] x [1.5]  /  5 = # of bottles you will need per course.

GLASSWARE

Cocktail Parties

Less than 3 hours: 1.5 glasses per person.
Over 3 hours: 2 glasses per person.

Self-Service for Guests

Offer a red, white and sparkling (if appropriate) for guests.

Dinner Events

For larger gatherings, rent glassware from a local party rentals shop.
Arrange each place setting with separate red and white wine glasses, plus a water glass.
For fine wine tastings, there is varietal-specific glassware available that will enhance each wine’s specific character. Riedel is an excellent choice.

CHOOSING WINES

Cocktail Parties

Events before 5pm (or for outdoor events in warm weather):
70% white wine, 30% red wine

Events after 5pm:
40% white wine, 60% red wine

White Wine Choices:

In general, Chardonnay is extremely popular, and also very versatile.
On a warm day, you may also choose to serve a crisp, refreshing Sauvignon Blanc.
If you are serving spicy foods, Riesling is a perfect pairing.
Fruity desserts and sweet appetizers such as Foie Gras pair wonderfully with white dessert wines.

Red Wine Choices:

Pinot Noir is the most versatile and an excellent red wine choice for warmer weather.
Merlot is a popular crowd pleaser because of its chocolate flavors and soft finish.
Zinfandel offers jammy fruit flavors that pair well with grilled foods.
Full-bodied wines like Meritage Red, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are recommended for pairing with beef, lamb, other hearty main courses and dark chocolate desserts.

Dinner Events

Pair the wine varietal with each course.

 

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