We are entering the most festive time of the year, which means parties! Whether planning an elegant formal dinner or a casual open house, one thing is constant – delicious wine, and plenty of it is needed. The last thing anyone wants is an empty glass. We know it can be tricky to determine exactly how much wine you need to have on hand. Fear not! We’re here to help with the calculations.
Assess Your Guest List
The first step in determining how much wine to buy is carefully reviewing your guest list. Consider the number of attendees, their preferences, and the overall drinking habits of your crowd. You know best how much (or little) your guests typically imbibe.
Consider the Duration of the Party
The duration of your holiday gathering is crucial in determining the amount of wine needed. A good rule of thumb is to plan for 1-2 glasses of wine per person per hour. Guests will likely consume more if your party spans several hours or includes a sit-down dinner. You can adjust your estimates for shorter gatherings or events with a specific start and end time.
Reds vs. Whites
Diversify your wine selection to cater to different preferences. Consider a 60-40 split between red and white wines as a general guideline. Classic options, like Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, satisfy various palates and are very food-friendly.
Factor in Non-Drinkers
Remember to account for guests who may not drink alcohol. Have some non-alcoholic options available, such as sparkling water, virgin cocktails, or alcohol-free wine, to ensure everyone has a beverage option they enjoy.
A Generous Pour
So, now that you’ve considered all your factors, how much wine do you need? A standard wine bottle is 750 ml, about five glasses of wine. You’ll need to estimate how many glasses of wine each person will drink and do some quick math. Here’s how we do it:
# of Guests x # of Hours x 1.5 Glasses per Hour = Total # of Glasses
# of Glasses / 5 = # of Bottles
Here’s what it looks like for a 10-person party that is scheduled for two hours:
10ppl x 2hrs x 1.5 = 30 Glasses of wine
30 / 5 = 6 bottles of wine total
Even more simply, plan for each guest to consume about half a bottle of wine. If you know your group is particularly fond of wine, or if your party will stretch on for hours, you should lean towards a higher estimate.
Open, Sip, and Enjoy!
By assessing your guest list, estimating consumption, and planning for a diverse selection, you can confidently determine how much wine to buy for your holiday party. When in doubt, it’s always better to err on the side of abundance and have an extra bottle or two on hand. Cheers to a festive season filled with good company and great wine!