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How many Cocktails should you have on a Cocktail Menu?

Too few can lead to boredom with very regular customers. Too many can be overwhelming for a new customer. But not only for Customers, also for your Team.


Is there a perfect number?


The problem a lot of us have is that we always have lots of Cocktails we want to put on a Menu. But quite simply that’s not always the right thing to do. There are many factors to consider. It comes down to stock levels, turnover and skill levels & competence of your team.

If it’s the very first Cocktail Menu you’re putting into your venue, then maybe listing 5-6 and focusing on your 2-3 biggest selling spirits is the correct way to go. If you don’t sell any Whiskey or Tequila in a normal week, don’t go putting Whiskey or Tequila cocktails on a Menu. 

However, if you’ve been running successful Cocktail programmes for a few years, then you may not think anything of having 15-20 Cocktails on a menu, as your Team will be able to learn them off by heart and it just becomes second nature to them.


Smaller Menus vs Larger Menus

The great thing with smaller menus is that they can be more agile and change quite easily. Even every 3-4 weeks, if one cocktail is not selling, change it. That becomes harder to do the more Cocktails you have on a Menu. Not only because of printing costs, but also the amount of different stock you need to have on hand.

But the great thing with larger menus, especially if they all sell in equal volumes, is that they offer more variety and keep regular guests interested.


How many is Too many?

You can only find this by trial and error. But there are two ways to look at it. If you have a Menu where a certain number doesn’t sell, either change them up, or remove them. But also look at stock volumes. If you have a lot of slow-moving ingredients, then you have too many. A good rule to work to, try to only carry enough stock on hand to last 10-14 days. If you have items that sit on shelves for months, they need shifting. They are Cash Assets for generating money. They serve absolutely no purpose gathering dust.


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