Cocktail-style wedding catering is a dazzling trend in wedding celebrations that is turning regular celebrations into outstanding events. A Cocktail style wedding is a magical evening where delicious snacks and enticing drinks meet with joy and love to create a party that shifts between formality and informality.  

The attraction of a cocktail-style wedding is in its capacity to create a lively environment that invites guests to indulge in various flavours while interacting with each other and making lifelong memories. From precisely prepared artisanal cocktails to delicious dishes that tempt the palette, this creative approach sets the stage for a genuinely remarkable wedding experience. 

In this blog post, let us look at some essential elements to consider if you want to have a perfect and memorable cocktail-style wedding reception.  

What is a Cocktail Theme Wedding?  

A cocktail theme wedding focuses on creating a fun and interactive cocktail party atmosphere. Instead of a traditional sit-down dinner, the wedding aims at serving cocktails and hors d’oeuvres (French starters).  

Gone are the days of traditional sit-down affairs; instead, couples are embracing this new and captivating concept, where guests are treated to an evening of mingling, indulging, and celebrating in a whimsical atmosphere.  

Features of a Cocktail Party Style Wedding Reception  

When considering organising a cocktail-style wedding reception, keeping several key aspects in mind is essential. Let’s explore these important elements that will shape your unforgettable celebration. 

  1. Cocktail Bar 

At the heart of a cocktail-themed wedding lies the captivating allure of a well-stocked bar counter, where professional bartenders skillfully craft an array of delightful beverages. Guests are treated to captivating cocktails, ranging from signature creations to beloved classics. The bar setup showcases an impressive assortment of spirits, mixers, garnishes, and exquisite glassware, creating an immersive experience tantalising the senses. 

  1. Hors d’Oeuvres (Starters) 

Hors d’oeuvres (starters) are the most important food items in a cocktail-style wedding reception menu. Instead of a formal plated dinner, the catering for a cocktail theme wedding dinner often focuses on a wide range of delicious bite-sized appetisers. Fraser’s Restaurant offers multiple starter options, which you can include on your reception menu. Some common starters are mini sliders, sushi rolls, bruschetta, specialty cheeses, canapés, and other bite-sized, tasty foods that are easy to eat while socialising.  

  1. Lounge Areas 

Cocktail-theme weddings frequently include cosy lounging areas with sofas, ottomans, and low tables that create a more laid-back and friendly atmosphere. This type of wedding allows guests to meet in small groups, speak, and enjoy their drinks in a comfortable environment.  

  1. Cocktail Attire 

Compared to a traditional wedding, the dress code for a cocktail-themed wedding is typically less formal and trendier. Cocktail attire, often defined as elegant but not overly formal, is frequently suggested for guests to wear. The couple may also decide to include cocktail-themed aspects in their clothes, such as the bride wearing a vibrant cocktail dress or the groom donning a tailored suit and pocket square. 

  1. Cocktail Inspired Decor 

Vibrant colours, contemporary design elements, and inventive accents can be used in the overall decor of the wedding reception venues to represent the cocktail themes. The decor can involve adding martini glasses, cocktail shakers, or citrus fruits as table centrepieces, floral arrangements, or signs.  

  1. Interactive Elements 

Cocktail theme weddings frequently have interactive components to engage and amuse guests. The components could entail setting up a Do-It-Yourself cocktail station where visitors can make their drinks, having a mixologist show cocktail-making techniques, or arranging a cocktail-tasting event with various flavours and recipes. 

Pros of a Cocktail Party Style Wedding Reception  

In the enchanting realm of wedding celebrations, where love’s tapestry intertwines with culinary artistry and friendliness, the cocktail-style reception emerges as a beguiling choice, adorned with many advantages that paint an alluring canvas. 

Social Atmosphere  

A cocktail reception encourages guests to mingle and interact with one another. There are no fixed seating arrangements, so guests can move around and mingle with other guests. It encourages a more laid-back and pleasant atmosphere, making it more straightforward for visitors to interact and enjoy the occasion. 

Cost Effective  

A formal, plated wedding dinner can be more expensive than a cocktail reception. The overall cost of food and drink can be reduced because the cocktail-style wedding reception menu will emphasise hors d’oeuvres and beverages. 

Cons of a Cocktail-Style Wedding Reception  

As you embark on the delightful experience at a cocktail wedding reception, where laughter and joy abound, consider a few potential drawbacks that may sneak into the celebration.  

Limited Seating  

Cocktail gatherings frequently have a more relaxed environment; therefore, seating options may be limited. Some guests might find it unpleasant or difficult that there is often no assigned seating at cocktail wedding receptions, unlike a regular wedding set-up. 

Limited Food Options  

Cocktail parties provide a wide selection of appetisers and small bites but cannot offer the same dining quality and quantity of food as a formal plated dinner. While there will still be a range of small snacks and appetisers, those who like a complete dinner may not feel like they are getting a full dining experience. 


A cocktail-themed wedding, with its infectious joy and effervescent ambience, offers a splendid opportunity for couples to tell their love story. It is a celebration that revels in the beauty of simplicity, honouring the true essence of togetherness and leaving unforgettable memories in the hearts of all who partake.  

Contact Fraser’s Events and Catering for the ideal wedding location. With views of Perth’s lovely Swan River, Fraser’s Kings Park Wedding Centre is situated in the serene surroundings of Kings Park. Our State Reception Centre has floor-to-ceiling windows and can hold 700 people. We also have a Function Centre and Private Dining Room for smaller parties. 



1. What are the advantages of having a cocktail wedding?  

Cocktail weddings foster a more intimate and friendly atmosphere because most guests are standing, making it easier for attendees to interact. It is also budget-friendly since it has very limited options for food when compared to traditional wedding menus.  

2. Is cocktail hour necessary?  

It is customary to have a cocktail hour at weddings, but whether it is necessary ultimately relies on the couple’s preferences, the schedule, and the ambience sought for the occasion.  

3. What is the duration of a cocktail hour?  

The cocktail hour should last for an hour. Some couples increase it to two hours to allow travel time between locations or complete the wedding photo shoot. 

4. How to invite guests to a cocktail style wedding?  

When you invite guests to a cocktail wedding, you can include a letter explaining the event’s style. Make it clear that there won’t be assigned seating and mention the dress code. 

5. Can I have a wedding cake at a cocktail style wedding?  

A formal cake-cutting ceremony may be less popular at a cocktail wedding, but you can still have a wedding cake as the centrepiece. Alternatively, you might set up a dessert station with a range of sweets and little desserts. 






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