Growlers a good choice for cocktail party?
I'm throwing a cocktail party next week, and i know a fair about of my boys don't want ginger infused vodka, so i want to please them with micro brews, but the choices in bottles and cans are so lame...
would growlers be a good choice? i'm having 25 people over....say....3 Growlers?
Only real downside to growlers is they dont stay fresh long after theyre opened, but that shouldnt be an issue at your party. Growlers are usually 64 oz, so think about 5 pints per and do the math if you think that will be enough. Personally, i think growlers are a good way to go provided you have access to good fresh beer.
I love a fresh growler as much as anyone, however I find one of the best fringe benefits of a cocktail party is having some great beer selections leftover. Dinner parties are a great excuse for me to stock up on a wide variety of our faves and then hope some will be left for our pleasure for weeks to come. With growlers you loose that benefit .
Also, some local beers are served in growlers only at package stores. For instance my fave is dirty penny ale. I only can get this at whole foods or a package store and it is only available in growlers. These will keep much longer if unopened than fresh filled growlers from a tap.
It might help to know what city/metro area you live in- maybe people could give you advice on good beer stores. That said, I'm surprised to see so many dissuading you from going with growlers. My husband and I frequently do this when we have a crowd coming over, and I think it's a great idea provided that you are able to get them the day of (or MAYBE late the day before), as someone else suggested. We typically get 4-5 pints out of them though, so you'll have to think about how many beers your friends will have to decide if 3 would be enough. If you've got a local brew pub that you all like (or a store like Consumer's in Buffalo, where you can get growlers filled in addition to bottles), then I don't think you'd have problems with variety, just get something different in each. Who knows, maybe even some of the wives will prefer an interesting local beer to "ginger-infused vodka"- I know I would! :)
There's just got to be a store nearby where the selection of bottled and/or canned beer isn't so lame- if you go that route your selection and variety can only increase from that of growlers. The main benefit of a growler is to get as close as you can in a home setting to enjoying fresh draft beer- that's probably not the goal here. Websites like Beer Advocate have a section that helps you locate good bottle shops nearby, so I'd look into that.
As I type this I'm able to see an empty growler from Three Floyd's on a bookshelf in my office. Unfortunately it's an 800-mile drive back to get it refilled as I now live in GA.
Back to your question. OP: beer is welcomed (almost) universally now. Tasty varieties come in bottles, cans, draft, mini-kegs, growlers, etc. I sense your wanting to serve something out of growlers has more to do with "style" than taste.
I don't know why you feel the choices in cans and bottles are lame, unless you're shopping at 7/11. I'm usually happy to see a growler so nothing wrong there (assuming you're having them filled with beers your guests will like). Growlers hold roughly 5 (12 oz.) beers so you can do the math on how much you want available for your guests.
You'll also want to pick up the growlers the day of the party (not ahead of time) so that may factor into your plans.