See a letter from Ellen about the donation campaign. Your help matters!

Cook Talk

Drink Needs for a Dry Wedding Reception
Ellen, I'm having a June Wedding, and we've got our food nailed down (tex-mex style cookout from a friend who caters), but with a non-alcoholic, outdoor wedding, it's hard to find a good guide for what we need in terms of drinks. We know we want to mainly do Tea (Sweet and Non-Sweet) and water, but we're wanting to have some bottled/canned soft drinks too.

Based on 120 people for a short reception (1.5-2 hours from 5:30 to 7:30ish), how much do we need of each? And how much ice (for serving and for keeping drinks cold)? ICE is the biggest question mark...

We don't have an option for bulk making tea, so we're looking at being stuck buying by the gallon (unless it'll be cheaper to buy the containers, etc. necessary for that much tea). We know that about 50-60% of the people are going to go for the sweet tea (we're in the South) and then half of those people will switch to water afterwards. We're on a pretty tight budget, but we have free access to a commercial ice maker about 5 hours earlier in the day than when we need it.

In my mind we need:
Sweet Tea: 8 gallons
Unsweet Tea: 3 gallons
Water: unlimited
Soft Drinks: 120 cans (1/4 diet)
Ice: NO IDEA, it could be pretty hot outside too...

Thanks in advance!

Did you see the making advice, ice, sodas, beverage planning page? Bulk tea making advice, ice, sodas, etc.

A pound of ice per person plus whatever you need for your ice chests.

I've gone back and read the beverages page again. I'm assuming that my lesser time but more people will offset and that those quantities are good on that page. Using that page, I also assume that each row is the numbers if that's all you're serving, so do you just divide that up among all the things your having is you're doing more than one of those items?

For instance, you page would suggest that we need 240 cans of soft drinks, but since we are splitting that with tea, should we get 120 cans and a total of 4 gallons of tea?

Then we need 120lbs of for serving and additional for the coolers?

If you get 120 cans, still get at least 6 gallons of tea.

120 pounds will be plenty.

E-Mail: (optional)