I’m a big fan of pre-dinner drinks. During our tour of New Zealand every bed and breakfast we stayed at offered free pre-dinner drinks. At Quickenberry it was great fun yarning away with a couple of glasses of wine, a large fire, and warm hospitality. We met folks from Switzerland and Alaska and perhaps would not have spent much time with them if it had not been for the pre-dinner drink programming. While staying in Wanaka the bed and breakfast had a special area designated for pre-dinner drinks and we got to know a father and son from Florida. Again, this probably would not have happened without the pre-dinner drink festivities.
Besides the good conversation and meeting new people, it is also a good way to keep from over consuming. Even if you have a few too many during pre-dinner drinking, it isn’t likely you will go too crazy as hunger or pre arranged times for dinner will put an end to it. After dinner is over we were typically too full to drink anymore making the temptation to keep consuming slight. Overall, it is a great tradition and I think Americans should follow the New Zealander’s lead with pre-dinner drinking.