Tip 5: Wine service preparation tips
Now that you have worked out which drinks, quantities and actually purchased them, there is still just a couple of very important things left to do before the event.
1. Buy the drinks early so that you can get the whites, sparkling, beers and softdrinks (yes, don’t forget the non alcoholic drinks!) chilled in time. Some deliveries may come pre-chilled but you will still need to keep them chilled as they will not stay cold for long. Red wines are usually served at Room Temperature ie. cool but certainly not warm. Just a warning on outdoor functions – take care not to leave any wine you are serving in path of the sun.
2. It may seem obvious, but this one sometimes slips through the cracks. Make sure your drinks have arrived where they are supposed to be! I have spent many hours on the phone to retailers and delivery people locating my drinks order. Make sure it has arrived and someone has started to chill the drinks that require chilling. Let’s face it, it is never a bad idea to call and just check the morning before… just in case there is a problem, no ice, no ice bucket, etc.
3. Do you need a corkscrew or beer bottle opener? Gone are the days when you could carry one in your handbag at all times. I have lost too many at airport security and have even arrived to give a class without my trusty waiter’s friend. These days you probably will find most of your drinks order will be in screwcap or twist top for beers but there will always be occasions. (Obviously a function centre, restaurant will have these)
4. You can open the red wines to ‘breathe’ a little earlier than the event if you wish. Just half an hour or so before pouring particularly if you are serving premium wines with dinner. Don’t open all the bottles though unless you know that they are all going to be used because the wine will a) not keep until your next event once opened and b) you won’t be able to return it if the seal has been broken. For dinner, I would recommend opening enough for just the first glass pour or one bottle on each table). This is not really necessary, as the wines will open up in a glass but some people do like to do this.