Ina Garten's Cocktail Serving Tip To Ensure Everyone Gets What They Like

Cocktail parties are all about the drinks. Whether you are serving a signature cocktail, martinis, negronis, mint juleps, or a mixture of multiple drinks, your guests are going to expect the cocktail river to be flowing. However, unless you intend to hire a bartender and servers, chances are your guests may not always have a drink in hand. This is why you are going to love Ina Garten's serving tip to ensure everyone gets the drink they want.

Garten revealed in a Facebook post that she loves a good boozy party as much as the next person, but the planning and decisions around food and drink can really give a host pause. The Barefoot Contessa wrote, "Cocktail parties are fun but they can be overwhelming to organize — how many hors d'oeuvres should you make? And how to serve them? What kinds of spirits and mixers do you need?" This laundry list of questions inspired the cookbook author to create a self-service bar where each guest can make his or her own drink.

Get creative

Garten's simplified approach to hosting a cocktail party with a self-serve bar removes the pressure of having to both entertain and make drinks all evening, giving her more time to spend with her guests. She went on to share on her social media, "I find it's easiest to set up a self-service bar so everyone can mix their cocktails exactly the way they like them. I serve 5 appetizers so it feels a little like a meal – some fish, some meat, some cheese, some vegetables – plus a little sweet like chocolate truffles and coffee at the end." 

A self-service bar can really give you the opportunity to be creative. Craft a margarita bar with different tequilas and serve up mini tacos and nachos or put together a DIY martini station with vodka, gin as the base alcohols, olives, onions, or lemon twists so your guests can bring out their inner 007 or Pennyworth. Whatever your cocktail penchant, make certain there's lots of ice on hand. And if you are worried that your guests won't know how to make a drink, don't. You can create some cute drink cards with recipes for some of your favorites. That said, in addition to your alcoholic drinks, don't neglect to have some beverages for individuals who do not drink.