I love cocktail hour. Wedding cocktail hour, I mean. And really, how could you not? It's the start of the party! The food, the drinks...it completely sets the tone for the entire evening. We've been to some good ones and some bad ones. So, in hopes my December wedding cocktail hour be dubbed a "good one," I enlisted the help of a few wedding experts to share their dos and don'ts.
DO serve bubbles
"Any kind of champagne or prosecco gives a fun, celebratory vibe," A Fare Extraordinaire says. Not solely reserved for the toasts, bubbles are inherently festive so serving them as guests arrive is a sure fire way to get people excited about the evening's celebration.
DON'T have the music too loud, big, or expensive
"Most people aren't looking or expecting the be entertained during a cocktail hour. They really want to talk and mingle, eat some light food and drink a few drinks before dinner," says Mike Ostrow, bandleader of Free Spirit and owner of Entertainment Exchange. In short, the music shouldn't overpower the festivities. There will be plenty of time for dancing later!
DO have bite-sized appetizers
Dinner is where you can serve a luxurious fork-and-knife meal. Appetizers that are passed are easy and convenient to pop in your mouth—think tuna tartare tacos or mini short rib grilled cheeses. "Make sure to have a range of heavy and light options and also a variety of proteins and vegetarian options," A Fare Extraordinaire says.
DON'T forget non-alcoholic drinks
Not everyone will be partying the night away, so make sure to have water, soda, and sparkling water available. And as a bride, it isn't a bad idea to make sure you stay hydrated, too.
DO communicate with your musicians about your vision
"Most often miscommunication happens when the planning for the space has not been properly conveyed to the artists who are performing at the cocktail hour," Ostrow says. For example, do you need a power outlet at your outdoor cocktail hour for a keyboard or electric guitar? How about speakers? What kind of music are you thinking about playing? You want to talk through those details with the DJ or band before the big day arrives.
DON'T forget to have a signature cocktail
Let your personality shine with your favorite cocktails. Share your favorite happy hour go-to or mix up a new seasonal favorite. You want something crowd-pleasing (a spicy or heavy drink might not do the trick), but something that is still uniquely you.
Style Me Pretty Contributor - Briana Charlotte is a freelance writer residing in Brooklyn, New York. When she isn't writing about all things bridal, she can be found on the dance floor at a wedding or bachelorette party or finally learning how to dance for her own upcoming nuptials.