A guide to styling your home bar like a pro
By clicking on this page we already know two things: 1. You have excellent taste. 2. You're looking to style your home bar. Maybe the second one is a little obvious but LET'S DO THIS.
#1 The essentials:
Many important factors go into the creation of your perfect bar. At the epicenter of these important factors lies the liquor, liqueur and mixers. The pièce de résistance of your cart. Here's the skinny:
You'll want the MVPs on hand: vodka, gin, whiskey, tequila, white rum and dark rum. We suggest buying smaller bottles of liquor you drink the least, but nevertheless, could have on hand. Chances are high that at least one of your friends will want one of them eventually.
Many liquors do better in a collab than solo. Cue mixers. These will vary based on what drinks you make most, but we recommend a solid base of juices, sodas, and bitters. Your one constant mixer? Ice. Don't let it... slip your mind (we're so sorry).
Do you here. Like margaritas or sangria? Keeping a little triple sec never hurts. Maybe you're into G&T's? Jazz 'em up with a little St. Germain. Up your martini or manhattan game with some vermouth. Or, be ready to make your stand in the great spritz debate with Aperol. Looking for some options? Take a look through our liqueurs here.
#2 The hardware:
No, not a hammer. We're talking all those other bar accessories that end in 'ers'. The shakers, strainers, peelers, muddlers and juicers. You don't need to get all of them at once. Focus on the tools you'll use most. Remember that chat (and unforgivable pun) we had about ice? Give that essential mixer a bucket with tongs. And last, but certainly not least, have a wine opener, stirring spoons and glassware.
#3 The bar:
So you're good on the gear, and you've got your ingredients. Now comes the feature presentation: the bar itself. There are a few different options when it comes to a home bar – a versatile cart, a simple table, a remodeled bookcase or a full fledged bar area – and the presentation can make or break the overall effect. Just ask Gordon Ramsey. Whatever style you choose, the key to a balanced liquor cabinet is to not overload it with clutter. Start by only displaying the liquor bottles you either drink most often, or those that look the best (beauty is in the eye of the beerholder-OH GOD WE CAN'T STOP). Try to include at least one of each of the aforementioned MVPs – vodka, gin, whiskey, rum, vermouth, etc. – then use the size rule to place them – smaller bottles in the front, larger in the back.
Carts are great because they typically have a large amount of open space – make use of this. The key to a side table bar is simply… to keep it simple. You can display your glasses on a second tray, or hang them on a wine rack under the main bar. Add the final touches with whatever makes this cart fit your style. Only display a few bottles and split the tabletop between alcohol bottles and glassware. Looking for something more organized? Install a small, open shelving on the wall and use it for glassware or small accessories. If you forgo the shelf route, organize your supplies around a centered object. The ice bucket is a great place to start, given its size. This bar is all about you, so display the goods you use and like most.
From cribs to television sets, we have seen a lot of really creative bar cart remodels. It will depend on the piece of furniture you're looking to rehab, but have fun and think creatively about the space–a drawer can become a shelf or a storage section made into an ice bucket. Our best pieces of advice are to utilize all of the space and display the goods you use and like most.
Check out some recipes: