How To Plan Drink Servings For A Party

Take the guesswork out of beverage buying for your party with this easy-to-follow formula. Keep in mind, it’s always better to get more than you think you’ll need.

To figure out how many drinks you’ll need for the duration of the party, assume each guest will have 2 drinks during the first hour, then 1 drink every hour after that.

number of guests x estimated number of drinks per guest = total number of drinks

Figure out how you want to divide the drinks among wine, beer and liquor. Want to keep it simple? Just portion a third of the total number of drinks to each type.


A 750ml bottle of wine contains about 5 servings, so divide the number of wine drinks by 5 to get the number of bottles you’ll need. If you’re only serving wine, an easy estimate is to assume each person will sip half of a bottle.

Champagne/Sparkling – A 750ml bottle fills about 6 flutes.


Mixed drinks contain about 1.5oz (45ml) of liquor each. So a 750ml bottle will make about 16 drinks, a 1L about 22 drinks and a 1.75L about 34 drinks. To figure out how many bottles to buy, divide the number of drinks needed by 16 (750ml), 22 (1L) or 34 (1.75L).

Mixers – Figure about 1L of tonic water, club soda or juice for every 3 guests.


For large parties, a keg often makes the most sense. Half-barrel kegs (15.5gal) provide about 200 servings if you use 10oz cups.