About Virtual Mixology Classes

Gathering for after-work drinks at a local pub probably isn’t an option for many remote teams. But with the help of video conferencing technology like Zoom, it is possible to plan a virtual cocktail party or book a class hosted by a mixologist who can guide you and your group through the steps to...

Virtual Mixology Classes Tips & Tricks

Best Practices
Pick a cocktail class that will appeal to everyone in the group and that features a drink that isn’t too complicated to create or uses ingredients that are difficult to find. You might also want to consider the season and base your choice around that. For example, sangria or a margarita are always popular summertime drinks, or go with a mulled wine during the holidays. Remember to consider those who might not be imbibing and include a non-alcoholic alternative. Most mixologists will explain how to make the chosen cocktail sans liquor. While you don’t need a specific reason to book a virtual mixology class (after all, it’s 5 o’clock somewhere), you might want to choose a theme or pick a specific type of class such as a boozy brunch. Will the class be in lieu of a traditional black-tie cocktail party before a gala? Or maybe it’s a way to toast a job well done by your team?
Other Tips & Tricks
Some virtual mixology classes will send at-home attendees snacks and small bites, along with the necessary booze and barware. But if that’s not the case, coordinate with a local restaurant and design a menu that the guests can choose to order from on their own, or arrange to have the items delivered in time for the class. Crowd-pleasing foods like deviled eggs, pigs in a blanket, crudite, and cheeses are classic party fare options. For a networking session, consider incorporating icebreakers into the event to help keep attendees engaged. Or if it’s a casual team gathering, play trivia or a fun game to mimic the feel of an IRL happy hour. If you’re planning a virtual mixology class for a certain occasion, ask attendees to download a custom virtual background to help set the mood.

Virtual Mixology Classes FAQs

  • A: Typically, classes are designed for 10-20 guests in order to provide an intimate and interactive experience where attendees are able to easily ask questions and connect with the mixologist as well as the other participants. But some companies offer virtual mixology classes for larger groups numbering into the hundreds. If you’re hosting a conference, you may want to offer classes at different times on different days in order to accommodate as many attendees as possible.
  • A: Pricing for a virtual mixology class depends on several factors including the skill and expertise of the mixologist, as well as the ingredients, tools, and accoutrements that are provided. Classes can start as low as $15 per person and go up to $750 to learn from the best of the best on the bar scene. Typically, classes cost around $50 to $100 per person and include a cocktail kit, which may or may not contain the required alcohol. Some companies also offer classes for a flat fee for up to a certain number of participants.
  • A: Generally, the vendor has a preferred hosting platform and will provide the necessary link and login information. But overall the best platform for hosting a virtual mixology class is the one you’re most comfortable with. If it’s a casual gathering of close-knit coworkers, you can coordinate with the mixologist and set up a Zoom meeting. (Keep in mind that the free version of Zoom tops out at 40 minutes, so if you’re planning to host a true happy hour, you may need to upgrade to the paid service.) If the class is part of a larger virtual conference, you’ll probably be able to create a breakout room where you can host the mixology class.
  • A: Virtual mixology classes usually last between 30 to 45 minutes. But they can also be as short as 15 minutes if the mixologist is only demoing how to make one cocktail, which is a good option for those looking to program a quick break in between conference sessions. Of course, if you’re adding on games or activities along with the class, the total event runtime will be longer.
  • A: Typically, most virtual mixology classes provide non-alcoholic options, allowing participants to follow along with the exact same techniques used in making the boozy counterparts. Plus, there are even mocktail-making classes available where attendees learn how to create non-alcoholic cocktail recipes, along with the bartending techniques that can be used to turn any cocktail into a mocktail. Also, because these classes don’t involve pricey spirits, they are generally less expensive.
  • A: It depends. Many companies offer full turnkey solutions that include kits filled with the necessary simple syrups, juices, alcohol, and bitters, plus professional bar tools, all of which can be shipped to your team, clients, and guests. Or the class may only include an ingredient shopping list, along with recommendations and links to purchase spirits and bar tools. (The final cost of the class will greatly depend on the content of the kits and the supplies that are provided.) Also, oftentimes participants are responsible for buying perishable items such as herbs and fruits.
  • A: After a short introduction, the instructor demonstrates how to make the first cocktail, which may include a bar tool tutorial and garnish prep, as well as some fun facts. Participants can be on mute and ask questions via the chat feature (which might be preferable with larger groups) or they can be unmuted in order to ask questions directly. Following the Q&A, if the class includes two or more cocktails, the instructor will proceed and demonstrate how to make the next cocktail.
  • A: Oftentimes, virtual mixology classes are led by the head bartender from a local bar or restaurant or perhaps the beverage director of a hospitality group or catering company.
  • A: Nope. The majority of virtual mixology classes are geared toward beginners and teach the fundamentals of cocktail-making. But there are classes available for more serious at-home bartenders who want to improve and expand upon their skills including ones on advanced techniques and cocktail development.
  • A: Generally, you and your group will receive your supplies a week or two prior to your class, plus you’ll want to give your guests time to buy any necessary ingredients as well. So it’s best to book at least two weeks in advance.