Wedding Etiquette Forum

Bar Signage

We are having an open bar, but there will only be one red and one white wine choice, as well as only one microbrew. I wanted to have a sign at the bar to indicate the choices, but I feel like it's tacky to refer to the cocktails as "well drinks". 

The items that are included per our banquet order include:

Well Liquors
Copper Ridge Cabernet & Chardonnay
Coors Light
Blue Moon
Sodas

Am I being too picky by thinking that "well" sounds a little tacky? Is there a different way to phrase this? 

(Water, tea, coffee and lemonade will be available at a self serve table near the bar.)

Thank you!
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Re: Bar Signage

  • If only certain brands are included in your package, then ask the bar to take the items out of the bar that aren't part of it.  This way, when someone orders a drink, they only see that one option.   Most venues should do this anyway.    My wedding was open bar and all the liquor, wine, beer available behind the bar was part of the open bar package. 
  • That's how ours will be set up as well. The only varieties that will be present are the items that we have paid for. I just wanted signage since most of them are tucked beneath the bar. 
    image
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I honestly would just leave it.  If someone orders a specific brand, the bartender will let them know that they only have X brand available.   DH ordered his favorite brand of beer at our wedding, but it turns out that wasn't one of the options offered.  He asked what was available, got a different beer and moved on. 

    When I go to an open bar, I don't always expect every specific brand because I know that generally isn't available or costs the couple more money per person.  I take whatever is available. 
    This.

    Typically when I go to weddings and I want a vodka and tonic I am typically just ask for a vodka and tonic, not a Grey Goose and tonic.  I do this because I know that the bar most likely does not have every single brand under the sun so it is just easier to say what type of liquor I like rather then the specific brand.

    emmaaanovella1186
  • SP29SP29 member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Agree with the above. I don't think it will be an issue, as most people would say, "Vodka and tonic, red wine, white wine, do you have X beer?".

    When we signed our venue contract, it had listed every type of beverage, including brand, that would be available at the bar. *IF* you wanted to make a sign (not that I think you have to), you could refer to this, or I would do:
    Hosted Beverages
    Copper Ridge Sauvignon
    Copper Ridge Chardonnay
    Vodka
    Gin
    Rum
    Coors Light
    Blue Moon
    Soda

    Thus, I'd write out the well liquors, but I'd only do this if there is only a handful of options. If the options are plentiful, I'd leave it be for the bartender to explain and forgo the sign.
  • Instead of "well liquour," type out the types of liquor you will have. "Vodka, Rum, Gin, whiskey, Tequila."

    This will prevent a million questions to your bartenders. I've bartended my fair share of weddings and that prevents them from having to list off all of your liquours (which I'm assuming that you would like to prevent)

    Also, just list off Chardonnay and Cabernet, you dont have to put the brand.
  • novella1186novella1186 member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    edited July 2015
    FWIW, we made a bar menu for our bar just to make things easier for the bartenders (so they didn't have to repeat 50000 times which types of wine were available, etc) and so the guests could choose (we had some extremely picky wine drinkers in our crowd so I knew they'd probably want to see brands and years)

    Our menu had some thing like 
    White Wines:
    Red Wines:
    Beer:
    Spirits: 

    ETA and we just included liquor brands when we listed types of spirits, such as "Stoli Vodka" 


    image
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited July 2015
    In banquet situations most people just order vodka and club, as they are aware banquets do not normally including a fully stocked bar.

    If there are not options, I just give what we have.

     If there are options as a bartender I just say "would you like GG, Smirnoff, Absolut, etc".   

     If the guest asks for "grey goose" and it's not part of the bar I simply say "the options are ..."


    One time I had a conversation that went kind of like this"

    Guest = "Goose and club".

    Me = "the vodka options tonight are Smirnoff or Absolut."

    Guest "no goose?"

    Me = "sorry, Smirnoff or Absolut"

    Guest  = "What about Kettle?"

    Me = [head bang]  "Smirnoff or Absolut"    - in my head I'm like "ARE YOU FUCKING LISTENING TO ME!!!" 


    A sign generally doesn't fix the problem.  Most wedding guests are yapping to other guests, not reading bar signs.      As a bartender it's not a big deal letting the guest know what the options are.



    ETA - I think a sign is a good idea, but you calling them well liquors is just fine.  Well in one place might be a call at another.  So the guests will ask for a specific liquor anyway.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    Maggie0829SP29
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I think both a sign and calling them "well liquors" is fine.  If guests ask for something that you aren't hosting, all that needs to happen is for the bartenders to tell them that it isn't available and they'll order something else.
  • Thanks ladies. I will probably just stick with "well liquors".


    image
  • I've always heard it referred to as "bar rail" when we're talking non-premium house liquor. As in "all bar rail 3.50 on Sundays" - maybe that could work?
  • dalm0mdalm0m member
    Ninth Anniversary 500 Comments 25 Love Its Combo Breaker
    Substitute the word "house" for the word "well"
    kimmiinthemitten
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    I've always heard it referred to as "bar rail" when we're talking non-premium house liquor. As in "all bar rail 3.50 on Sundays" - maybe that could work?
    I have found this term is regional.   I've lived in places that have used both terms, so I'm familiar with both. 

     If I used "bar rail" at my home town they would not know what the hell I was talking about.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    [Deleted User]mollyringwald15
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