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Wedding Cocktails: 24 Signature Wedding Cocktail Ideas + Expert Tips

Serve up something extra-special at your drinks reception with a signature wedding cocktail. Whether you plump for an old classic or have a mixologist create a unique spin on one of your faves, a cheeky cocktail is guaranteed to get guests in the party spirit

Wedding cocktails on a bar next to a gorgeous grey and gold wedding cake
Pexels / Kait Hawkins

Wedding cocktails on a bar next to a gorgeous grey and gold wedding cake
Pexels / Kait Hawkins

Get your guests into the spirit(s) of things with a wedding cocktail or two. Cocktails for weddings have been a huge trend over the last few years, particularly signature wedding cocktails that represent the couple's personalities. 

Whether you plan to serve them at your drinks reception or save them for the evening celebration, wedding cocktails are guaranteed to go down a treat. All you need to do is nail down the drinks that best fit who you are as a couple and the time of year you're serving them.

To help you create the wedding bar of dreams, we've rounded up the most popular wedding cocktail ideas from winter wedding warmers to refreshing summer wedding drink ideas.  

The Best Wedding Cocktail Ideas: Popular Wedding Drinks & Expert Tips

We've also scoured the web for the most stylish wedding cocktail signs and bar menus, to ensure your guests know exactly what to ask for when they hit the bar. Plus, we chatted to Andy Styles, Events Director at The Cocktail Service, who answered all of your wedding cocktail FAQs. So, pour yourself something nice and get ready to delve into the world of drinks! 

The Best Wedding Cocktails

Above all else, your wedding cocktails should be something you love to drink yourself. With that said, it's also a good idea to choose something you think plenty of other people will like too, which is why we've included plenty of classics and crowd-pleasers below. From delicious aperitifs to current cocktail trends, there's a wedding cocktail idea for you here. 

1. Espresso Martini

A tower of martini glasses with espresso martinis in them

Give guests a shot of energy ready for a night on the dancefloor with an Espresso Martini. Pour a teaspoon of sugar syrup over ice in a cocktail shaker then add the vodka, espresso and coffee liqueur. Shake and strain over a chilled glass before adding coffee beans.

You will need:

  • 1tsp sugar syrup
  • 50ml vodka
  • 25ml espresso coffee
  • 25ml coffee liqueur
  • Coffee beans to garnish

2. Negroni

a negroni cocktail in a tumbler with a slice of orange

Sophisticated and with one hell of a kick, a Negroni will work year-round. Mix the gin, vermouth and Campari together along with ice. Strain the mix into a tumbler and add a couple of large ice cubes. Garnish with a slice of orange.

You will need:

  • 25ml gin
  • 25ml vermouth
  • 25ml Campari

3. Dirty Martini

A dirty Martini wedding cocktail in a martini glass with a stick of olives inside
Pexels / Taryn Elliott

The Dirty Martini cocktail is a sultry drink synonymous with bond girls and black tie events. If your wedding is a swanky affair that exudes glamour and class, this is definitely a wedding cocktail you'll want on your bar menu. Olive juice puts the 'dirty' (or filthy!) in a Dirty Martini, meaning it will go really well with meze food and canapés.

You will need: 

  • 50ml dry gin
  • 25ml dry vermouth
  • olives
  • olive brine (to make it dirty)

4. Eggnog

An Eggnog wedding cocktail with christmas cupcakes and berries around it
Pexels / Jill Wellington

Tell us you're having a Christmas wedding without telling us... Serving Eggnog at your wedding will get all of your guests in the festive mood. Though not to everyone's taste, the people who love Eggnog really love it! It's a great choice for a winter wedding cocktail as it's not something you drink tonnes of, so having it as a signature cocktail will work really well. 

Fun fact - Eggnog, along with Espresso Martini, are actually the most popular winter cocktails according to a study by NIO Cocktails. Serve them together at your winter wedding to guarantee guest satisfaction!

You will need: 

  • 10g caster sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • A dash of vanilla essence
  • 100g condensed milk
  • 25ml brandy

5. Pornstar Martini

A slice of passionfruit being placed on top of a cocktail

Porn Star - or Passionfruit - Martinis are a real crowd pleaser and, thanks to the Prosecco content, a great choice for celebratory drinks. Put the vodka passionfruit liqueur, syrup and pulp from the passion fruit into a shaker with ice and shake. Strain the mixture into a glass and top up with Prosecco. Garnish with a sprinkle of passionfruit seeds.

You will need:

  • 35ml vodka
  • 1tbsp passion fruit liqueur
  • 2tsp vanilla syrup
  • 1 passionfruit
  • 50ml prosecco

6. Old Fashioned

An Old Fashioned wedding cocktail being poured into a short glass
Unsplash / Adam Jaime

Never was there a classier drink than the Old Fashioned. This cocktail is great for weddings all year round, but due to the whisky and bitters content, it will really warm the soul at an autumn or winter wedding. It's a short cocktail served with plenty of ice and an elegant orange peel garnish. Not only does it taste incredible, it looks pretty swish too. 

You will need: 

  • 2 tsp sugar syrup (or 1 tsp granulated sugar)
  • 1-2 dashes of bitters
  • splash of water
  • 60ml scotch whisky or bourbon 
  • orange peel
  • soda water (optional)

7. Mulled Wine

A glass of Mulled Wine wedding cocktail
Unsplash / Edward Howell

Like Eggnog, Mulled Wine may as well be renamed "It's December!" - you can't drink it and not feel Christmassy! The great thing about serving mulled wine as a wedding cocktail is that it can be batch made meaning less work for your venue staff and less queues at the bar for your signature wedding cocktail.

What's more, Mulled Wine as a wedding cocktail really lends itself to a self-serve situation. You could have a big barrel of fruity Mulled Wine with a rustic cocktail sign telling guests what's inside. Provide some paper cups and your guests will be both happy and merry.

You will need (batch of 6 servings): 

  • 750ml bottle of red wine
  • 1 large cinnamon stick
  • 2 star anise
  • 4 cloves
  • strips of lemon zest
  • 4 tbsp caster sugar

8. Kir Royale

Champagne poured over Chambord and blackberries

Give your guests a touch of decadence with a Kir Royale. Simple to make, all you need is some blackberry liqueur topped up with some fizz. Finish it off with a fresh blackberry.

You will need:

  • 1 tbsp of Crème de cassis
  • 1 glass of Champagne or sparkling wine
  • 1 blackberry to garnish

9. Aperol Spritz

A row of glasses of Aperol Spritz

Planning a summer wedding? An Aperol Spritz is a must. Add 50ml of Aperol to a stemmed gin glass with ice and pour the prosecco over the top. Add a splash of soda for extra fizz. Add fresh or dried orange to the rim of the glass to garnish.

You will need:

  • 50ml Aperol
  • 75ml prosecco
  • Splash of soda

READ MORE: How To Plan An Eco-Friendly Summer Wedding

10. Mojito

A mojito with crushed ice on a bar

Punchy and refreshing, a Mojito is a real crowd pleaser. Mix lime juice, sugar and mint and crush it together (you can use a rolling pin or similar), add the mixture to a tall glass along with some – ideally crushed – ice. Pour the rum over the top and stir before adding soda water to taste. Garnish with a sprig of mint.

You will need: 

  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1tsp granulated sugar
  • A handful of mint leaves
  • 60ml white rum
  • Soda water

11. Pimm’s

Three Pimm's dispensers

A jug of Pimm’s is a British classic that’s easy to make in batches and is perfect for a summer wedding. Fill a jug with ice and pour in the Pimm’s followed by the lemonade. Mix it together and then throw in the fruit. Serve with straws.

You will need:

  • 200ml Pimm’s No. 1
  • 600ml lemonade
  • Mint, cucumber, orange and strawberries

12. English Garden

Water being poured into a glass with mint

Fruity and refreshing, we can imagine guests sipping this on the lawn of a country wedding venue. Mix the mint leaves, gin, cordial and lemon juice together. Add ice and then top up with apple juice before stirring and dropping in a strip of cucumber.

You will need:

  • Handful of mint leaves
  • 30ml gin
  • 2tsp elderflower cordial
  • 2tsp lemon juice
  • Cloudy apple juice
  • Cucumber strip

13. Pink Gin Spritz

Two pink cocktails with lemon and green garnish

What could be more wedding-worthy than a blush pink cocktail? Fill a highball glass with ice and pour over the gin and liqueur before topping up with soda water. This is also a cute bridal shower idea!

You will need:

  • 50ml rose gin
  • 35ml lychee liqueur
  • Soda water

14. Bucks Fizz

Two glasses of bucks fizz clinking together

Served at brunches across the globe and a popular tipple on Christmas mornings, Bucks Fizz was made for celebrations. Pour 50ml of orange juice into a glass and then top up with 100ml of champagne – be sure to pour slowly to avoid wasting any bubbles!

You will need:

  • 50ml freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 100ml champagne or sparkling wine

READ MORE: Christmas Wedding Favours: 25 Magical Winter Favour Ideas for Your Festive Day

15. Hot Toddy

A mug of orangey yellow liquid with lemon slices

A winter warmer with a touch of spice, a Hot Toddy will make a great welcome to your wedding venue post-ceremony. Combine 150ml of boiled water with the scotch, honey and lemon juice, mix together and garnish with a slice of lemon, star anise, cinnamon stick or all of the above!

You will need:

45ml scotch whisky

15ml runny honey

15ml lemon juice

Star anise or cinnamon stick to garnish

READ MORE: 30 Winter Wedding Cakes Perfect for Your Festive Day

Wedding Cocktail Signs

Let your guests know what's in store at your reception with a personalised wedding cocktail sign. From painterly creations to modern acrylic menus, there'll be something that complements your theme below. 

16. Signature Cocktail Wedding Sign – £23.95, Ottie Design

A sign on an easel displaying hand painted signature cocktails

Embellished with eucalyptus leaves, this painterly signature wedding cocktail sign looks as good as your cocktails will taste! Select your cocktails from an enormous range of pre-made designs and add your names and wedding date.

Shop Now

17. Acrylic Signature Drinks Sign – £59.99, Alice Jade Designs 

A curved signature drinks sign made from acrylic

This acrylic sign can be created in a range of colours and finished with a gold, rose gold, silver, black or white 3D finish. Personally, we're loving this clear matte design with white and gold details. 

Shop Now 

READ MORE: 47 Beautiful Wedding Table Decorations: Stunning Tablescape Ideas

18. Wedding Bar Menu Sign – From £45, The Friendly Paper Co. 

A black and white wedding drinks menu sign

There's something seriously stylish about the simplicity of this monochrome sign. Keep your signature cocktails at the top and let your guests know what else you'll be serving throughout the night with a full bar menu. 

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19. Acrylic Signature Cocktails Menu – From £32.07, Pink Posies and Pearls

A clear plastic wedding cocktail menu with an old fashioned, G&T and watermelon mojito

We love this clear signature cocktail menu from Pink Posies and Pearls and think it would sit perfectly alongside just about any wedding theme. 

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20. Monochrome Dome Wedding Bar Sign – From £10.75, Wedding Lux Shop 

A black wedding bar sign with white lettering

Sleek and simple this monochrome dome bar sign had to make our edit thanks to the Beyoncé reference! Add your favourite tipples along with your names to make it yours. 

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21. Pet Portrait Signature Cocktail Sign – From £40, Carmen Draws Tonight 

A white signature cocktail sign with two cats and a dog painted on

Incorporate your pets into your wedding by dedicating your signature cocktails to them with this personalised sign. How adorable is this trio of fur babies? 

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READ MORE: 31 Cute Dog Wedding Outfits for Your Best Pal

22. Rustic Wedding Bar Menu – From £22.05, East Coast Vinyl Decals 

A chalkboard bar menu leant against a wooden wall next to some white flowers

Having a barn wedding? We think this rustic, personalised wedding bar menu sign would fit right in. Position it next to some florals and old crates for authentic country styling. 

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23. Signature Cocktail Sign Digital Download – £4.80, Pearly Paper Design 

A white sign with black lettering detailing signature cocktails

Fancy something minimalist? This digital template from Pearly Paper Design might fit the bill. You can print it onto the paper or card of your choice and personalise it with a frame to match your wedding décor. 

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24. Modern Wedding Bar Sign – £9.01, Splendid Moment 

A blush pink wedding bar menu sign next to dried flowers

We think this blush pink wedding bar sign from Splendid Moment would fit in perfectly at a boho themed wedding (and you can find the perfect boho wedding dress here). All you need is a bud vase filled with dried blooms to complete the look.

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What are The Most Popular Wedding Cocktails?

Andy Styles, Events Director at The Cocktail Service says, "One of our specialities is a cocktail tower, with Martini glasses stacked on top of each other in a pyramid. It’s a jaw-dropping, can-you-believe-they-managed-that cocktail installation which is very popular with our wedding clients.

"We can make this with any cocktail which goes into a Martini glass, but the Espresso Martini and the Porn Star Martini are very popular choices right now!

"The Aperol Spritz has also had a massive resurgence in the past few years. We’ve worked with event companies and private clients providing Aperol themed bars at weddings.

"For the perfect summer sipper, we recommend our own recipe Saint Fiacre from our Botanical Menu. A mix of pink gin, elderflower, grapefruit, and raspberry, it’s a fruity and floral delight fit for most wedding menus.

"As we head into the Autumn, playing around with spicy flavours and seasonal fruit is a great route to take. Made with lemon and sugar the Pear Sour is sweet and refreshing enough to work at a reception, but the inclusion of Pear Brandy lends a spiciness perfect for Autumn.

"Pears also balance well with other spirits in cocktails. A popular choice on our menu is the Dakotan Tonic, which is made with pear infused rum and a spicy ginger ale. We love combining classic British flavours with ingredients from around the world. Our An Englishman in Oaxaca uses blackberries to balance the sharpness from citrus and a Reposado Tequila."

As for winter cocktails, a recent study by NIO Cocktails revealed that the most popular cocktails for the colder months were Eggnog and Espresso Martini in first place - two classic British cocktails. Completing the top five winter cocktails were classic favourites Dirty Martini, Negroni and Pornstar Martini.

Another winter classic which made the list was Mulled wine. If you're planning a winter wedding and want to serve something quintessentially, warm mulled wine could be the perfect winter wedding cocktail for you.

How Many Cocktails You Need for Your Wedding?

"The answer, as with most aspects of events, is that it depends," says Andy. "How many cocktails really depends on the guests and what they like to drink. The given wisdom in the industry is that you’ll need two or three drinks per guest per hour during the reception.

"Drinks suppliers will chat to you about guest numbers and work out how much stock to bring. Any professional bar company will always build in additional stock in case a drink turns out to be more popular on the day."

How Do I Create a Signature Cocktail for My Wedding?

Andy says, "The first thing to ask yourself is 'what do I like to drink?' Your signature wedding cocktail should be a representation of you! Focus on your ideal drink and don’t worry about what you think your guests may want. It’s your day, and they can always order something else.

"We always start with the nearlyweds' likes and dislikes when creating bespoke cocktails for couples. Taking a variation of a classic and making it your own is a great place to start. For example, switching vodka in the classic Espresso Martini recipe for spiced rum is an inventive way to build on a classic. Alternatively adding a fruity spin on a Margarita is very popular this year.

"We recommend selecting your cocktail as far in advance as you can. This gives your mixology team as much time as possible to test variations to create something truly special for you. Don’t forget, cocktail suppliers also need to order in the stock needed to make your drink.

"On the positive side, many couples we work with say that choosing their cocktails helped them decide on the theme and tone for the rest of their day. So, once you’ve booked your venue, get talking to drinks suppliers about options. A cocktail tasting is always a fun activity, and it’s a relatively easy wedding decision to tick off the list nice and early."

Find your wedding food and drink A-team with our round-up of award winning wedding caterers