Cocktail parties are one of the best events to host. They offer both a glamorous atmosphere and a rather inexpensive option for throwing an event. Since the cost of a cocktail party is lower than many other events, you have the opportunity to serve higher-priced items, such as caviar.
Usually, a cocktail party will include passed hors-d’oeuvres and plenty of alcohol. You won’t be serving a meal, which makes the cost much cheaper compared to a dinner party. When you decide you want to plan a cocktail party, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Start by Choosing a Theme
The theme will set the tone for everything else. When you choose the theme, your hors-d’oeuvres will match the theme and so will the cocktails. You really cannot plan much of anything else for your cocktail party until you choose the theme.
Themes can range from extravagant to very discreet. It can be simple, such as a specific flavor or color, such as a Black & White Ball theme or a Pomegranate theme. Of course, you can go more extravagant with incredible decorations, amazing entertainment, and high-priced cocktails.
Mad Men theme maybe?
Choosing the Menu
Any traditional cocktail party will include passed hors-d’oeuvres. These foods typically can be eaten in one or two bites making the need for dishes and a place for guests to sit to eat unnecessary. They are not meant to be a meal or a substitute for the meal. Instead, they are typically served as an appetizer or a snack.
When planning your cocktail party menu, choose seasonal options. Not only will seasonal ingredients be easier on the budget, but they will also fit better with your theme. Think about what you would find at a farmers’ market during the season of your party and choose those types of ingredients for your hors-d’oeuvres.
A cocktail party is also a good time to experiment with unique and unusual options. Since guests will only be taking a bite or two, you don’t have to worry if some guests don’t like everything you serve. It’s best to choose several options, that way, if one isn’t a big hit, another might be.
Don’t forget about the vegans, vegetarians, and gluten-free guests when planning the menu. About 30% of your menu should cater to the meatless eaters and other dietary restrictions. This will not only give all guests something to enjoy but will also offer variety on your menu.
Choosing the Cocktails
This is a cocktail party so the cocktails will be the star of the show. Food doesn’t have to be served the moment the party starts, but cocktails should be available immediately. It’s best to have a full bar with a variety of options. You can even make it a themed bar to fit your parties theme.
Having two specialty cocktails; one better suited to women and one more for men is a great way to host a successful cocktail party. In addition, offering beer, wine, champagne and other more traditional cocktails will help to ensure the party is a huge success.
Make sure to offer a full non-alcoholic option for those that don’t drink, as well. It can be a simple drink, but it should be more than just a soda or a common beverage as you want all guests to feel included in the fun.
Plan the Entertainment
Mingling is great, but nobody wants to do it in a quiet room where all you hear is the conversation. You need some form of entertainment, even if it’s just simple background music. Of course, you can go more elaborate with a live act and some cocktail parties have gone as far as to include acrobats, hypnotists and other unique forms of entertainment.
The key to a successful cocktail party is for the host to have just as much fun as the guests. You shouldn’t be running around fixing problems all night long. Whether you’re throwing a small cocktail party at home or a larger event for your company, you should be having fun at your own event.
Hiring a cocktail party caterer such as Worry Free Catering located at 1810 E Sahara Ave, Las Vegas, NV 89104 Phone number (702) 825-6850 to handle the hors-d’oeuvres and the cocktails is the best choice. This will take quite a bit of pressure off you and allow you to relax and enjoy the party.