Most work blogs I read talk about not drinking at company events. Or having the one drink and then switching to soda (or pop as we like to say out here in the Ole Midwest). But I will not say that because it would be hypocritical.
I personally don't think there is anything wrong with drinking in front of your coworkers. At our company events, I will drink more than one glass of wine and sometimes I even get drunk. The key to drinking with your coworkers or in front of your boss is to know yourself.
We all know this chat -the chat that your parents had with you before you left for college (or was that just mine?). The chat about knowing your limits and knowing your body and knowing your drunk. I know that after 4 glasses of wine I'm usually at my limit and that that 5th glass of wine will make me go overboard so if I'm with my bosses or people I want to impress then I'm not going to have the 5th glass. Or even the 4th probably.
And honestly I've been at parties where I have had that 4th or 5th glass and then sent myself home. Case in point, the incentive trip in St. Thomas - we had a huge snafu in the form of a Carribbean storm take place on the island and had to cancel our sail over to St. John for cocktails and dinner and instead had a 3-hour cocktail hour at the bar and then my boss invited me and my guest (who just happened to be WG1) to dinner. The 2 of us could barely finish our meals we were so tipsy so after dinner we sent ourselves home instead of sticking around for a nightcap.
So if you have a company picnic coming up with an open bar (like I do in a few weeks) then just stick to my advice and know yourself. Don't overdo it and if you think you're getting to the point of no return, send yourself home.
It's all about knowing your drunk - thanks for the advice Mom & Dad!