I should start off by establishing that we have decided to only serve beer and wine at our reception. We’re both big winos and Foxy seriously loves his beer. We realistically can’t afford a full open bar, and we really don’t see the need for a cash liquor bar in addition to an open beer and wine bar. I know people have varying opinions on this, but it’s the best option for us.

Now on to the good stuff. For a small extra fee per person, our venue also allows you to do a champagne toast and/or a signature cocktail to serve throughout the night. Given our budget, we can only realistically do one or the other.

On the one hand, a champagne toast would be pretty schweet, because let’s be real here: I LOVE champagne (or sparkling wine, as the case may be).


Not really a good descriptive photo, but it’s def a usual Sunday afternoon. 😉

Plus, I love the look and feel and vibe of a true, classic champagne toast. And some of the the pictures can be unbeatable!


Image via What It Costs


Image via Salvagente / Photo by Kenichi-Nobusue


Image via allie is wired / Photo by Tyler Shields

Now on the other hand, a signature cocktail is just so fun. For one, it would ensure that there would be at least some type of liquor for those (lovely) sticklers who aren’t big beer or wine fans. Second, we could have fun creating a name for it like “Blushing Bride Blueberry Gimlet” or something equally dorky and mushy. Third…and unashamedly one of the biggest selling points for me…is that we could put said cocktails in super-cute glasses!


Image via Luna and Chloe Weddings / Photo by Souder Photography


Image via Green Wedding Shoes / Photo by Jackie Wonders

Oh yes. I’m a total sucker for the Mason-jar glasses and stripey straws.

Needless to say, we’re pretty set on the signature cocktail—ultimately, we figure people will be more than able to toast with the drinks they will have in front of them instead of champagne. Now we just need to decide what kind of cocktail to serve!

What kind of bar, if any, did you have at your wedding? Any good signature-cocktail ideas??


Mrs. Fox

Washington DC/Havre de Grace, MD
Wedding Date:
June 2012
Introducing Miss Elk!
Dollar Tree Decor
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  1. Member
    thirdtimebride 483 posts, Helper bee @ 6:17 am

    We’ll be doing the same thing: beer and wine (more so the latter) with a signature cocktail I’ll be designing.

    Now we just have to decide whether the cocktail will be available all night or just during cocktail hour and switch over the beer & wine for the reception. Decisions, decisions.

  2. aardvark Member
    aardvark 1129 posts, Bumble bee @ 6:21 am

    Maybe a cocktail with some champane in it!? Best of both worlds…

  3. Member
    futuremrswifey 170 posts, Blushing bee @ 7:32 am

    Our reception is early afternoon (12-4) so we are doing beer and wine (I hate imagining my family and friends drunk in daylight). Still trying to decide on a toast vs cocktail. We are thinking about doing a mimosa toast (mimosas are a staple at our house on weekends).

  4. mole Member
    mole 1242 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:12 am

    Having a small wedding is allowing us to do a full bar for both the reception and the hometown party; heck, we’ll probably need it in both places to hit our room minimums. But we are definitely going to be making some cute signage to advertise bride and groom’s drink recommendations.

  5. Guest Icon Guest
    Debra, Guest @ 8:55 am

    My wedding was just last weekend (Oct. 23) and we did signature drinks but no champagne toast. There were some non-drinkers in the crowd, and probably some who don’t favor champagne, so I imagine everyone would have ended up toasting with what they had in front of them anyway. Our signature drinks were awesome, though! Groom’s drink was “Fire Power” (aka scotch & amaretto) and the bride’s drink was “Flower Power” (aka gin & pomegranate juice). Very descriptive of us!

  6. mspony Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 10:24 am

    I love the signature cocktail idea (especially with fun stripey straws). I think any drink with rum in it is sure to be a crowd pleaser :)

  7. Member
    mangorita 3 posts, Wannabee @ 10:49 am

    toast with your wine and have signature cocktails! (if your venue allows it)

  8. dalmatian Member
    dalmatian 592 posts, Busy bee @ 11:00 am

    Love the signature drink! And agreed, mason jars and stripey straws are just to die for.
    @Miss Aardvark: Great idea!

  9. Guest Icon Guest
    Kerry, Guest @ 11:07 am

    Ms Aardvark might be on to something. I was going to suggest a French 75 – that’s what we had. Might really depend on your crowd. Popular lately are John Dalys – sweet tea, vodka & lemonade (we get sweet tea vodka called Jeremiah Weed & cut out a step), but it’s kinda summery. How about a Dark & Stormy (maybe rename it)? Ginger Beer & Mt Gay rum. Delicious!!

  10. Member
    ILikePink 1408 posts, Bumble bee @ 11:16 am

    The yummiest signature cocktail I had was actually at my friend’s June wedding last year. It was strawberry lemonade with vanilla Absolut. There were even strawberry pieces in it and it was so good.

  11. msfox Member
    msfox 1635 posts, Bumble bee @ 12:40 pm

    @thirdtimebride: Good idea about possibly only having it at cocktail hour! Makes it extra special and cuts down on costs, right?!
    @Miss Aardvark: You’re a genius! And I’m clearly dumb since that never crossed my mind, hah!
    @futuremrswifey: Mimosa toast all the way!!! They are SO delish!
    @Miss Mole: Definitely an advantage of a smaller wedding!
    @Debra: I’m loving the names! Actually reminds me of Mario…? Which is awesome, btw.
    @Mrs. Pony: Mmmm. Rum.
    @Kerry: Dark and Stormy almost sounds like a Moscow Mule.. those are deeeelicious. A John Daly’s actually sounds kind of perfect since our wedding is in June!
    @ILikePink: Oh wow. That is going on my list for SURE!

  12. Guest Icon Guest
    beachstone, Guest @ 4:39 pm

    we had a champagne toast but many people used whatever drink they had in their hand. if you are concerned about the budget i would say 1. get a nice bottle of champagne for yourself and your new husband (take it back to your room at the end of the night!) 2. have the dj announce a song or two before the toasts that toasts are coming up and people will want a beverage 3. if many of your guests really enjoy sparkling wine have it as one of your wine selections

  13. Member
    HummusGal 178 posts, Blushing bee @ 6:50 pm

    I love the thought of a signature cocktail… I may have to ask our venue if it’s an option. We calculated our catering cost with a open limited well bar along wine & beer (they let us bring down the cost by taking away a few of the liquors and a 2nd red/white wine selection). So that’s an idea for anyone looking to have the best of both too! :)

  14. Member
    cancanny 61 posts, Worker bee @ 9:03 am

    Beer & wine for us…. with maybe a white sangria (with rhubarb & ginger- seasonal like WHAT!) and a cucumber hendricks drink? Those are our current thoughts.

  15. msfox Member
    msfox 1635 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:18 am

    @beachstone: I think that’s the plan! We bought a fancy bottle of champagne a while back with the plan of having it for the two of us to share if/when we wanted to! Also, I love the idea of having the DJ announce upcoming toasts so people can be prepared. I’ve definitely been caught off guard at other weddings with nothing to drink!
    @HummusGal: Wonderful suggestion about taking away some of the higher end liquors! Makes total sense!

  16. parasol Member
    parasol 2955 posts, Sugar bee @ 10:15 am

    We were almost exactly like you, Miss Fox! Only beer and wine for us (significantly more cost effective), but we had champagne instead of a signature drink. Though I love this idea, as I can kind of go either way on champagne. My mom was pretty adamant about that, though, and she couldn’t understand why we didn’t want champagne flukes–we opted for mason jars! They are just too cute!

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