Tasting parties are always a great idea to learn all about new drinks from around the world. When you are hosting a tasting party, the rules are in your hands to go in any direction you want. 

Whether you are hosting a mocktail-tasting party, a whiskey night, soda tasting party for the kids, or a wine-tasting party for a certain region, there are plenty of ways to organize the event.

I’ve hosted many different types of these parties and here’s some favorite tips I’ve gathered along the way to make your tasting party one of a kind.

A collage with people at a wine tasting and drinking beverages.

I love to taste new and exciting food and drinks from around the world. One way that I love to discover new party drinks with a little game element included is with a tasting party.

Tips and Tricks For Hosting A Tasting Party 

It is always so exciting to pick a theme or type of drink and see what other varieties and pairings go with it. Here are a few of my favorite themes I’ve hosted:

  • A soda tasting party for the kids
  • A girls wine tasting night 
  • A whiskey tasting
  • A mocktail competition and tasting party
  • A smoothie tasting (fun brunch party idea)

When it comes to hosting a tasting party for my friends, there are always a few organizing tips that I try to follow. 

While having everyone just bring a different type of drink is one way to host a tasting party, I like to make mine a tad bit more organized. The clever tricks and tips below help me stay on track to try all new beverages. 

Wine Tasting Ideas And Suggestions

A wine tasting is a classic that you can’t go wrong with. Pulling off a wine tasting is rather simple with these quick suggestions. Once you know who is attending the tasting, you can get started thinking about the details. 

Know your audience for the tasting and pick a theme. Think about who is coming to the tasting and what they prefer to drink. It’s annoying as a host when you pick something, and everyone isn’t a big fan.

Gather your thoughts about your guests and then pick a theme from there. Go with all reds and whites, or pick a region from around the globe to explore the wine scene.

Plan questions and have little blurbs ready to go about each drink. 

To keep the setup simple, set up all the glasses, plus a glass of water, for each guest before they arrive.

Pro Tip: It helps to designate a pourer for each bottle of wine. This way, the flow of the tasting will keep going. 

Three images with a wine tasting.

Cocktail and Mocktail Tasting 

When planning a cocktail and mocktail tasting, it is important to plan the menu ahead of time. Think 3-4 cocktails or mocktails per tasting. This way, you can plan accordingly when buying ingredients.

Don’t forget the garnishes too, as they make a huge difference when trying different drinks.

Prep the garnishes in small bowls, so it is easier to pass out during the tasting. And don’t forget the ice! It will make or break your drink, so it’s better to have more than enough ice in the freezer than not enough. 

Like the wine tasting, know your audience and stick to a theme. Go with a specific spirit, fruit, or mix-in that can balance out each drink.

If you want to keep the flow of the tasting going, think about making big-batch cocktails instead of individual drinks. This way, the vibe of the tasting doesn’t stop in between drinks.

Four images with different beverages.

Soda Tasting Party 

Tasting parties aren’t just for alcoholic beverages. Switch up the wine for soda and give your tastebuds a bubbly ride. Try all of the lemon-lime flavored sodas, the different varieties of cola, or tell each guest to bring a bottle or can of soda for a random theme. 

Stick to the guidelines of a typical tasting. Soda doesn’t mean you can’t keep the fancy glasses out.

Set up a glass station along, with a glass of water for each guest.

You can even stick to a theme here too, and go with sodas from around the world or the most popular sodas in each state.

Printable Tasting Cards For Notes and Thoughts 

Let’s be real — at a tasting party, there is a lot to keep track of. When I am hosting a tasting party, I love to offer my guests a card with an area where they can write down their notes and thoughts.

This helps them keep track of what they like and if they want a second or a recipe to take home. Here are some of my favorite tasting cards to print out for my guests.

1. Wine Scorecard

2. Wine Tasting Rating

3. Taste Testing

4. Classic Scorecard

5. Whiskey Tasting

6. Bourbon Tasting

7. Beer Tasting

8. Cocktail Tasting

9. Soda Tasting

Three images with wine and beer tastings.

Tips For Tasting Ideas For All Ages 

Tasting parties are not just for adults. Here are some ideas of tastings that you can do to get the whole family involved, no ID is required. 

1. Cake Tasting 

2. Chocolate Tasting 

3. Coffee Tasting 

4. Cupcake Tasting 

5. Pizza Tasting 

6. Cheese Tasting 

7. Ice Cream 

8. International Snacks 

9. Chip Tasting 


What supplies do I need to make my tasting successful?

Make sure you have enough glasses for all the different beverages. Also, ingredients and ice if you are making cocktails. Have plenty of water and snacks on hand too, as your guests will get hungry and want a clean pallet. 

When should I throw a tasting party?

A tasting party is great for a weekend activity or something different to do with friends and family. You don’t need a specific occasion to have a tasting party. You could coordinate the tasting party around a holiday like Valentine’s Day or Halloween and make the theme of your party coordinate with the celebration. 

These tasting party ideas and suggestions are a great guideline for throwing your first tasting party. I like to use these ideas to keep the flow of the party going and to make sure everyone is happy to be there.

The printable tasting cards make it so handy to keep track of my notes and thoughts about each drink. They are so easy to print out and allow everyone to go home with all of their ideas on paper. 

I am so excited to share these ideas to see how my friends and family come up with their own tasting party ideas. I can’t wait to see what theme and drinks they decide to share.

If you found these tasting ideas exciting, make sure to check out our drunk Jenga and dice drinking games for a great pairing with a tasting.