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Mar 6, 2012 10:42 AM

Help with wine and sparkler selections!

I am hosting a party for my parent's 35th anniversary. It is on a Sunday from 2-6pm, and we are expecting 40-60 people. I want to serve red, white, and sparkling wine, but have no idea how much of each to buy.
Also, I don't think we have any serious wine people attending, but I don't want to buy something horrible either. I was thinking of going with Gruet Blanc de Noirs or Cristobal for the sparkling. Any ideas for a white and a red under $15 (preferably under $10) a bottle that won't offend people? Thanks!

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  1. I don't know the Cristobal, but any Gruet sparkling will be more than acceptable.

    Banfi makes a couple of red and white wine blends in the $8-$10 range that are very good for that price. The red, Col di Sasso, is a Sangiovese-Cab Sauv blend, and the white, Le Rime, is a Pinot Grigio-Chardonnay blend. Don't know where you are located, but ask your wine merchant if those are available. We've used them very successfully in several large party situations.

    1 Reply
    1. re: ChefJune

      Thanks for the info! I do not usaully shop for wine not do I know what anyone in Maryland carries. I was thinking of using since they have a first time customer free shipping offer. I thank you for the suggestions!

    2. Oh, any thoughts on how much of each type to buy?

      6 Replies
      1. re: missthyst

        A rule of thumb is to provide a bottle per guest (so 40-60 bottles).

        1. re: Chinon00

          Wow, I think a bottle per guest for a party on a Sunday afternoon is a lot of wine! I cannot imagine the average person drinking more than half a bottle at a party like that.

          1. re: DavidT

            You want enough not just enough;]

          2. re: Chinon00

            Last time I did that, my friend puked over the railing on the second floor on to my other friend's bike...

            Half a bottle per person should be fine.

            1. re: jaykayen

              It's a rule if thumb as to how to supply wine for a party. It's not the expectation that every guest consume an entire bottle. It's better form to supply 6 bottles too many than 6 too few.

              1. re: Chinon00

                I still think the OP will be well served by three cases.

        2. It is a Sunday but we have a few drinkers coming. Some non-drinkers too. I am hoping they will cancel each other out. It is a four hour party so a bottle may not be too extreme. There will be beer as well though. I imagine some people will drink that, although there is a store that carries good beer not two blocks away, so no fear of running out! Should I estimate the same of each type? Will champagne be more popular? I don't want to run out of anything.

          5 Replies
          1. re: missthyst

            I'd imagine that most wine drinkers will consume the red and that the Champagne would be for toasting? Whatever amount of wine you get I'd go w/ a split of half red and a quarter of Champagne (everybody will have a glass) and a quarter of white.

            1. re: Chinon00

              Don't sell the sparkling short. Some guests will drink that throughout the party.

              1. re: Chinon00

                I would lean more toward the white and sparklers and ease back on the reds. My last party of this type left me with several open reds and a few unopened sparklers, but no whites at all. People feel more comfortable walking around with white wine. Spillage is an issue and specially in someone's home. No one wants to be responsible for that ugly purple stain.

                1. re: budnball

                  Nice point on the red....hadn't occured to me. I think my menu may also have people leaning towards white. Mostly veggie with some seafood and chicken options. Don't know if this matters at a party though. I probably go with my tried and true method of buying way too much of each.:)

                  1. re: missthyst

                    Well, if your family drinks like my family, a bottle per wine drinking adult isn't that far off the mark. ; ) 1 1/2cases of white, 1 1/2 cases of sparkling/rose', 1 case red
                    Make sure they're all things you would be willing to drink later just in case you have leftovers.

                    Bubbles and crisp whites will go fine with your menu and don't rule out a nice rose', both dry and sparkling. As for reds, it'd go lighter with a nice Cotes du Rhone and/or Pinot Noir but keep a Cabernet around for those folks who won't drink anything else.

                    Oh, see if you can find out what kind of wine was served at your parents' wedding and surprise them with a bottle if possible or at the very least their current favorite.

                    If you post a specific menu and which town in MD the event is being held, we can narrow the field of possibilities for you.