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Neptune is embarking on a series of blogs related to the noble art of drinking! Once we have a few posts up we’ll move to a dedicated blogging platform. For now we’ll just keep it simple…..

Prosecco vs. Champagne – what’s the difference? (except the price!)

Let’s start with the basics shall we? The most important and easy to understand difference between prosecco and champagne is the regions in which they are made. Champagne is a French product and only bottles produced in the ‘Champagne’ region of France can officially be labelled with the name ‘Champagne’. Prosecco on the other hand, is made in a region of Italy, near Trieste.

The two drinks may look similar when poured into a glass. However, they are made with different grapes; Champagne made from either Chardonnay, Pinot Noir or Pinot Meunier grapes, whereas Prosecco is made from from Glera grapes.

One of the more obvious differences between the two is the price. However, this is mainly due to how the two drinks are produced. Champagne is produced in smaller containers and also changes containers during different steps. During the fermentation stage, prosecco tends to be stored in tanks, therefore allowing producers to make more from one batch which, in turn, helps reduce the final price.

Another key difference between the two products is indeed the taste. As previously mentioned, they are made from different grapes which instantly has an effect on taste. Champagne grapes tend to have a citrus, white peach tone, whereas prosecco tends to have notes of apple or pear.

However, it’s not just the grapes that produce the different tastes; the way the two are produced has an overall effect on the final flavour. Champagne is left to age for longer, which ultimately makes the taste resemble cheese rinds. And as Prosecco is aged in larger tanks, the pressure on the liquid is reduced, giving it an overall lighter and more fruty flavour.

When deciding between the two, if you are not restricted by budget, it is worth trying both to see which you prefer as, although prosecco has been labelled ‘the poor mans champagne’ it is really an entirely different drink. Many don’t like champagne as it can be too dry or intense, and vice versa, some don’t like prosecco as it can be too sweet. Once you know what you prefer, it is then worth sampling a range within that specific drink as there can be significant differences within the same drink.

If you can’t decide between either, fear not, as here at Neptune Bars we stock both Champagne and Prosecco for your guests to enjoy! Contact us to enquire about prices.

How to choose your wedding reception drinks

After a wedding ceremony everyone is in full celebration mode, and your wedding reception drinks are the first opportunity for your guests to toast your nuptials!

Most guests will want something alcoholic to get the celebrations started, whilst others will want something soft; so how best to please everyone all the while ensuring that no one gets too carried away too early?

First things to consider is whether or not you want to offer seasonal drinks. For example if you are getting married in the colder months, you might want something like winter Pimms or even warm cider. In the warmer, summer months, it can be easier to think of drinks options as most are well received, including bucks fizz or regular Pimms. Both these options are good as they aren’t pure alcohol but instead served with a soft mixer, great to keep your guests under control!

If you want to go fully traditional then it has to be champagne, sparkling wine or prosecco, nothing says ‘cheers’ more so than a glass of bubbles. However, it is becoming increasingly popular to also serve beers alongside the bubbles to help please a wider audience.

When it comes to soft drinks, simply iced water or orange juice are normally quite acceptable. But if you want to think outside the box a bit, why not try an elderflower presse or traditional lemonade. Both very refreshing and also a bit more exciting. They can also be presented with fruit in the glass to make it look more exotic!

Think about the presentation behind serving your drinks. You can invite people up to the bar and collect there, or you could have waiters with trays ready & waiting, or simply have a table with the drinks laid out for them to pick up and take away as they please.

Whatever you choose, it’s important to not get too carried away as there is usually still a fair bit of the day ahead. It’s also key to ensure that all drinks are chilled as advised; warm beer or Pimms isn’t pleasant for anyone!

Here at Neptune Bars we have an array of drinks available and can help plan your wedding drinks reception set up. Get in touch today to find out how!

Bar Tab vs Open Bar, what to choose?

When hosting a private party or event, one question that always pops up is, will it be an open bar? This isn’t because people are greedy and want a free night all night, but these days there isn’t a common practice, as it varies hugely on *** type of event, size etc. Not one option is the norm, so naturally people want to check to ensure they’re prepared on the day***???!

Most corporate events tend to have open bars, and people can often take advantage of this as ‘the man’ is paying as such. Guests can sometimes see this as not coming out of one individuals pocket, but from a company or sometimes multiple companies. So if you are planning on hosting a corporate event, there is certainly a level of expectation that at least a fair few rounds will be paid for.

To try and avoid people taking advantage too quickly, be sure to consider what you offer from behind the bar. For instance, don’t let the barmen serve doubles, or individual shots. Don’t let them order more than 4 drinks at a time, to help ensure that people are just getting rounds for friends rather than stocking up themselves! This way there is a level of structure in place, and not a free for all!

If you’re planning on hosting a private, individual party it can be a bit trickier to decide. One advantage you do have is that you are likely to know your audience better, and therefore know if you have people who like particular drinks or people that can sometimes get carried away!

You can also compare your event to others that you’ve been to within the same circle, for example, if you’ve been to other friends weddings, birthday parties etc, you can think back to what they did and compare to what you thought you would do!

It is always a nice gesture to put some money behind the bar if you are hosting an event, and people will appreciate it. However if you simply can’t afford it, make sure your bar is stocked with all the drinks that you would expect to find in most common bars so that fi they are paying for their own drinks they can get exactly what they want!

Neptune Bars have a great range of drinks available to stock on the night as well as some very competitive drinks packages. Enquire today!