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Offering a signature drink at your wedding is a fun way to add a personal touch to your celebration. A signature drink menu allows couples to showcase their personal tastes and creativity. We especially love it when couples infuse their cocktail menu with local flavors and ingredients! 

Our friends at Mad River Distillers, a Vermont craft spirits producer of whiskey, rye, rum and brandy, mixed up five delicious signature cocktail recipes for you to try for your own Vermont wedding. (Or really, anytime you need a special drink!) We're sharing their delicious recipes and our best tips on creating your own wedding signature cocktails menu. Cheers!

This blog post is sponsored by Mad River Distillers. We're excited to partner with and share this Vermont business!

Why have a signature drink at your wedding? 

Signature drinks are an easy way for couples to add a personal touch to their bar menu. Between the cocktail selection, the name, and the menu sign, there are several opportunities to showcase your personality! 

Offering a signature drink is also an opportunity to showcase local flavors and makers, like the cocktail recipes below from Mad River Distillers. 

Can you have a signature drink and an open bar at a wedding?

For sure! Many couples who provide an open bar offer a signature drink for the reasons above. 

Other couples may choose a signature menu in lieu of an open bar, as it limits the number of spirits needed to stock the bar. A signature drink in addition to a beer and wine bar is a great option for many couples, especially ones who are DIYing their bar.

How many choices should you offer on a wedding signature drink menu? 

We recommend offering one to three signature cocktails for your wedding. More than that may be too confusing for guests trying to quickly order a drink at the bar! 

If you offer more than one drink, you could select a cocktail for each partner (think "yours" and "mine") and a combination drink ("ours"). 

Ideas for a signature drink name and sign

First, you don't have to have a fancy name for your drinks. Straightforward names ensure guests can quickly make a selection at the bar. 

If you do want to get creative with your names, here are a few ideas:

  • Use your last name: "The Smiths Spritz" 

  • Refer to a special location: "The Stowe Sour" 

  • Include your pet: "Duke's Daiquiri"  

  • Play off the marriage theme: "The Mint to Be Mojito"

Signature drink ideas and recipes from Mad River Distillers 

Mad River Distillers is a craft producer of whiskey, rye, rum and brandy in the heart of Vermont's Mad River Valley. The ingredients for their spirits are sourced regionally from non-GMO, fair trade and organic suppliers and the mashing, fermenting, distilling and aging occur on site at their distillery in Warren, Vermont. You can visit their tasting rooms in Waitsfield and Burlington. 

In creating these five cocktails, the Mad River Distillers team says, "We wanted to offer recipes that are beautiful, taste delicious, and are also not too complicated for a wedding caterer to put together."

We're excited to share these delicious cocktail recipes with you for your wedding! We've broken the recipes down into drinks featuring whiskey and ones featuring rum so you can pick and choose based on your tastes. 

Signature drink recipes featuring whiskey

Bourbon Spritz

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 oz Mad River Distillers Bourbon Whiskey

  • 1 oz Aperol

  • .75 oz Lemon Juice

  • Prosecco / Sparkling Wine / Club Soda

  • Orange slice

Instructions:

  1. In a large wine glass, add all ingredients over ice.

  2. Top off with your choice of Prosecco, sparkling wine or club soda.

  3. Add an orange slice for garnish.

Rye Smash

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Mad River Distillers Revolution Rye Whiskey

  • 1 oz Royal Rose Raspberry Syrup

  • 1 oz Lemon Juice

  • .25 oz Fernet Branca

Instructions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a shaker over ice.

  2. Shake briefly.

  3. Strain contents into a Double Old Fashioned glass.

  4. Top off with Fernet Branca. 

  5. Garnish with a mint sprig and raspberries.

Maple Bourbon Sour

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Mad River Distillers Bourbon Whiskey

  • 1 oz Vermont Maple Syrup

  • 1 oz Lemon Juice

  • 4 dashes Angostura bitters

Instructions:

  1. Combine ingredients in a shaker and shake briefly.

  2. Strain contents into a Double Old Fashioned glass over a large ice cube.

  3. Top with Angostura Bitters.

  4. Garnish with a slice of lemon and orange.

Signature drink recipes featuring rum

Grapefruit Daiquiri

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Vanilla Rum

  • .75 oz grapefruit juice

  • .50 oz lime juice

  • .50 oz simple syrup

  • 6 dashes Scrappy's Grapefruit Bitters

Instructions:

  1. In a shaker, add all ingredients with ice.

  2. Shake for about 8-10 seconds.

  3. Strain contents into a coupe glass.

  4. Add a rosemary sprig for garnish.

Black Currant Mojito

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 oz RUM 44

  • .50 oz Black Currant Syrup

  • .75 oz lime juice

  • Club soda

  • Mint sprig

Instructions:

  1. In a shaker, add all ingredients with ice.

  2. Shake for about 8-15 seconds.

  3. Strain contents into a Highball glass over fresh ice.

  4. Top off with club soda. 

  5. Add a fresh mint sprig for garnish.

A final tip to manage the costs of a signature drink menu

If you offer a signature drink menu, be prepared for guests to order those cocktails - and lots of them. Even with an open bar, they will likely be the most popular choices of the night. That means you'll want to be sure to have lots of drink ingredients on hand. 

Also, talk with your bar service ahead of time about the cost for these drinks. (Editor's note: we didn't heed this advice, and our final bar tab was hundreds higher than it could have been if we had paid attention to the ingredients in our signature drink!) One thing we love about the recipes from Mad River Distillers is that they utilize common ingredients!


How great do all five of those cocktails sound?! Any of them are sure to be a hit for your signature drink! 

We hope these recipes and tips inspire your own signature wedding cocktail menu. We'd love to hear which of these signature cocktails you'll be trying first - and what you'll name it! Tag us on Instagram when you make your special drink and learn more about Mad River Distillers and their cocktail recipes.