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How many of you will have to give a toast at the holiday party this year? What do you do? What do you say? How do you give a toast? Well, thanks to stores for the large displays of champagne and wines acting as reminder that the holiday season is here, now is the time to prepare your toast! In order to give an excellent toast, the first thing you need to do is to be prepared and give yourself ample time to write your toast. So since the stores are preparing for the holidays, maybe now would be a good time to start thinking about that toast.

I recommend writing down a couple of sentences as you think about the toast. You don’t need to sit for an hour and think about it but as you are preparing for the event, keep a pen and paper close by in case you come up with some ideas. Then a couple of days before your toast, compile the list of thoughts and start to compose your toast.
Remember – short and sweet is the key to a good toast. You are keeping your guests from food and drinks so no one wants to listen to a 30 minute toast while they see the food getting colder. Keep your toast positive, focus on what has made 2017 special, what special wishes do you have for the guests in 2018?

More importantly, what are you going to serve to toast with and do you have enough? We always have plenty of champagne and wine on hand just in case but if you’re planning the party make sure you have enough to give each guest 4-5oz of the beverage (a regular size bottle, 750mL, serves 4-5 glasses). If you need a lot of wine or champagne be sure to ask for a case discount which is 10% for 12 bottles in the state of Ohio.

When the day finally arrives to give the toast, take a few deep breaths. Then as your time comes to toast the group, stand up straight, make sure your glass is full and enjoy the spotlight. As you come to a close in your toast, be sure to end it with another positive sentiment and either “Cheers” or “To our guests” to signal that it is okay to drink.

Amanda is the Co-Owner of Candlelight Winery located at 11325 Center Road, Garrettsville. For more information on the winery, please visit

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Amanda Conkol and her husband Chris are the owners of Candlelight Winery in Garrettsville, Ohio. Amanda’s passion for wine is evident in her weekly column “Notes From The Vineyard”, but that’s not all Amanda is passionate about. She maintains a full schedule raising twin daughters, working a day job consulting as an IT Project Manager and is the Girl Troop Leader for her daughters’ troop. When time allows Amanda loves to travel (especially to Disney World) and go for runs throughout Nelson Township.