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Beltramo's Wines & Spirits
1540 El Camino Real
Menlo Park, CA 94025

Monday-Friday: 10:00am-7:30pm
Saturday: 9:30am-7:30pm
Sunday: 10:00am-6:30pm

(650) 325-2806
(888) 710-WINE(9463)
Fax (650) 323-8450

Party Guide

Beltramo's Party Guide

(also see Beltramo’s Party Guide Worksheet and Beltramo’s Party Check List)
Click here for printable version

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What type of party are you planning? This planning guide will get you started, but you should make changes as your party dictates. Considerations:  Number of guests attending? Number under 21 years of age or nondrinkers? Time of day? Weather?  Budget?  Age of guests?  Known preferences of guests?  Length of party?  Dinner wine? Specialty cocktail? After dinner drinks?  Coffee? 

THIS GUIDE IS FOR A 2 TO 3 HOUR COCKTAIL PARTY based on 50% wine drinkers, 20% spirit drinkers, 15% beer drinkers and 15% non-alcoholic drinkers. The following proportions are normally generous. A short party (say 1 to 2 hours), a shorter pre-dinner party, or an open house, you will need approximately 25% less.

WINE:  Provide wine for 50% of your guests. You will need one 750-ml bottle of wine for every three wine drinkers for before dinner. A ratio of two whites to one red is typical.  Remember wine for dinner is in addition to these suggested quantities. You will also need one 750ml bottle of wine for every three people at a dinner. This allows for 2- 4 ounce servings per person. The ratio of white to red dinner wine is dependent upon the menu.

SPIRITS:  Provide spirits for 20% of your guests.  Allow 2 ounces per drink, 2 drinks per person per hour. One 750ml bottle equals 12-2ounce drinks.  The standard bar uses the following four primary spirits in these ratios: Vodka (4), Bourbon (3), Scotch (2), and Gin (2).  Adjust for total quantity and type based on known preferences of your guests.  Canadian whiskey, rum and tequila are optional. If the party will continue after dinner, brandy or cordials are a nice touch.

MIXERS:  Provide two 1-liter bottles of "mixers" for every one 750ml of spirits - a guide: 30% club soda, 30% tonic, 10% soft drinks, 20% diet soft drinks, and 10% juices.  There are many other optional mixers -see our PARTY WORKSHEET on the back of this sheet.  Warmer weather favors tonic. Popular juices include orange juice, cranberry and grapefruit juice. Tomato juice should be provided for pre-noon parties.

SPARKLING MINERAL WATERS & SOFT DRINKS:   Provide a minimum of three 10-ounce bottles or a one liter bottle of mineral water for each person (and/or two 12 ounce cans of soft drinks) for 15% of the guests attending who are light or non-alcoholic drinkers.

BEER:  Provide three 12-oz cans or bottles of beer for each person for 15% of the guests attending.  Include light beer and craft brews.

ICE GUIDE:  For cocktails provide 1 lb. per person; one 7 lb. bag for every seven guests; one 40 lb. bag for every forty guests.  Be sure to provide extra ice in hot weather.  Additional ice is needed for chilling or keeping wine, beer, or other items cold - one 40 lb. bag per tub.

BARTENDERS:  We recommend one bartender for every 50 to 100 guests.  Additional personnel required if drinks and/or hors d'oeuvres must be served or if blender or exotic drinks will be featured.

GLASSWARE:  Standard glassware is the 8-ounce All Purpose Wine, the 11-ounce High Ball, and the 9-ounce Old Fashion.  Figure on a total of one-third more glasses than guests.  Approximately 60% Wine, 30% High Ball, and 10% Old Fashion glasses.  Beltramo's has rental glassware available for our party customers.  Have extra plastic glasses as backup.  Plastic "glasses" are acceptable and often a more appropriate alternative for parties around the pool for instance.  When plastic is used provide almost twice as many glasses as guests.  Large size beer cups are a must for keg beer. 

DINNER PARTY GUIDE:  For a dinner only, provide one 750-ml bottle of wine for every two guests - this equals three 4-oz servings per person. If serving pre-dinner drinks, provide one 750ml for every three guests. Feel free to serve several different wines with a meal.  We can help you choose wine to complement each course including dessert.

WEDDING RECEPTIONS (2.5 hours):  Most wedding receptions offer wine and champagne and normally more wine than champagne is consumed.  For 70% of the guests, provide 1 bottle of wine for every three guests plus one bottle of champagne for every three guests drinking wine and champagne.  Provide beer for 15% of the guests and mineral water and soft drinks for 15% of the guests - see our mineral water/soft drink and beer guides for quantities.  However, if you are serving Champagne only, provide one bottle for every two drinking guests.   Remember wine for dinner is in addition to these suggested quantities.  Champagne for a toast only:  provide one bottle for every five guests.  If spirits and punch are going to be provided, see spirits and punch sections on this sheet.  Please read "COMBINATION PARTIES" and adjust to the type of wedding you are giving.

PUNCH GUIDE:  Provide 16 ounces of punch per "punch drinking" person - this is four 4-ounce servings.  One gallon makes approximately 32 servings.

BEER PARTY (2.5 hours):  A quarter keg is 7 3/4 gallons or 82 12-ounce servings (or 3.5 cases of beer) - enough to serve 28 guests three 12-ounce servings each.   Also consider serving cans or bottles over kegs; there is much less waste and no malfunctions in tapping equipment.

WINE TASTING PARTY:  Wine tasting parties can vary from the very casual “bring your favorite white wine,” to the more formal "sit down" tasting of a well-defined selection.  It’s a good idea to limit the number of wines somewhat; eight different wines are usually sufficient.  Figure 1.5 to 2 ounces of each selection per person.  At Beltramo's the possibilities for wine tastings are almost limitless.  Our wine consultants will be happy to help you with ideas and selections.

COMBINATION PARTIES:   If you are serving several different types of beverages at a party, estimate what proportion of your guests will drink each type of beverage.  Make your proportions add up to 110% to cover wrong estimates and provide only enough of each type to cover each proportion.

BRUNCH, LUNCHEON, TAILGATE SUGGESTIONS:   White Wine, Rose, Champagne, Champagne Cocktails, Mojito, Margaritas, Daiquiris, Bloody Marys, Mimosas.