Beginners Guide to Creating A Home Bar

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Do you aspire to turn your living room or a part of it into a personal speakeasy? You are not alone — almost every adult wants to do the same. Creating a home bar is not as difficult as it may seem to many, especially when you have the right information on what to do or what you need to acquire for it to be operational.

If you are not sure how to get started, you can always ask the help of a bartender, you know, or speak to a bar professional in the industry. The only thing we advise against is jumping into creating a home bar without any clue because all you can do is to transfer your usual bottles of alcohol, mixers, and tools in one place.

Do you know that a well-organised bar can inspire you to be a great cocktail maker once you have a special place and set-up for all your liquors and mixers? A home bar is what you need for this to happen. For you to get started, we have offered you here an ultimate guide on how to create an awesome home bar.

1. Identify Your Home Bar Structure and Decoration

Most people would think of huge cabinets and units when they hear about creating a home bar, but this is not always the case. All you need to get the right and the most fantastic home bar is creativity. Also, consider the space available for the bar because you do not need a bar that will require you to dispose of some of your favourite furniture. Here are a few home bar layouts you can consider.

A Bar Trolley or Cart

A bar trolley comes as one of the most amazing and hottest structure to create your ultimate home cocktail bar. For one, it doesn’t take a huge space in your living room; neither is it permanently placed in one area — you can always move it around when the need arises.

Ensure that it is neatly arranged at all times so that it doesn’t always look messy and cluttered. A bar cart can come with a layer of shelves whereby you separate your liquors, mixers, glassware, and other tools you need, all in one place. Its size will dictate how much it can take.

A Console Table

Most people use this bar structure in their homes. All you need is a sideboard, credenza, or a console table and a beautiful tray. Place your bottles of alcohol, bitters, decanters, and the glasses on the top of this table.

The bar tools such openers should be kept on one of the shelves on the table. The basic here is to ensure that all the home bar essentials are easily accessible for you and your visitors to walk over and pour a drink of choice.

To reduce the monotonous appearance of the table, consider pub decoration. Paint the table itself, to begin with, add some lamps and other decoration elements around and on top of it.

Use a Subtle Tray

If you feel like your house is too small to add new furniture or trolley, do not worry because you can also create that awesome bar with what you have already. Think about your bookshelf or piece of furniture that has nothing laying on top of it. And just like a console table, you can transform it into your mini home bar.

You either place your favourite liquors on top of it or simply use one side of it by placing a subtle tray. Do not forget to add some decors around it — it is more welcoming this way.

Build Wet Bar in Your House

Do you feel like you can and want to lean on the extreme side with your home bar? That would be me, I like going all the way, and there is nothing wrong with it as long as you have the resources and space to do it — do not hesitate.

The sink must be placed strategically, and your mixology skills are about to hit the ceiling with this setting. Have several types of shelves on top of the sink where you place your glassware (a hanging cabinet is better), tools you need, and then the liquors.

Have some bar towels with you, and a trash can below the sink. Finally, do not forget the pub decoration — it is essential. Despite being a little bit expensive to set up, this is one of the most impressive and fantastic home bars you can have in your house.

2. Think About Your Glassware

One thing which is a fact is that your home bar can look more impressive based on the type of glassware you have invested in and how it is displayed. Therefore you must raise your game on this one. Different cocktails look great on particular glasses — I mean, do not use one type of glass for all of them.

The glasses come in different styles and shapes such as flute, highball, lowball, or even a mug — yes, a mug can serve your favourite cocktail as well.

Some good examples of glassware designs include a tumbler, coupe, cocktail glass, flute, Collins or the highballs, wine goblets, a pitcher, pilsner glass, shot glass, and finally, the copper mugs. The copper mugs work perfectly with Moscow blue, among other mixed drinks.

The choice is all yours, and you can start small with the most common glassware you know before going extreme with all the types — it is not a must to have them all.

3. You Need the Best Barware

Your home cocktail bar cannot be complete if you do not have the necessary barware — they also come with glamour based on how you display them in your bar. You most probably had a fine strainer with you, a knife, and a corkscrew, but now it is time to up your game and creates that awesome home bar.

Now, we are going to provide a list of barware that you shouldn’t miss out in your home bar. The good thing is that they do not cost as much, and mostly, it is a one-time cost unless you want to change something or add new varieties.

Jigger

This tool is used for measuring drink portions, and while some people may prefer the eyeball way, it is very easy to ruin the taste of your drink. The jigger comes in handy in making that perfect cocktail.

A Shaker

Once you measure your alcohol portions using the jigger, you need the shaker to mix them up — it is perfect for hand-shaken cocktails. The shaker will ensure that you enjoy balanced flavours in your drink. If possible, use a Hawthorne strainer to separate your cocktail from the solid ingredients used to make it.

Bar Spoon

Have you ever tried to use your kitchen spoon to remove something from a tall glass holding your favourite cocktail? If you did, you could agree that it never works, and this is where a bar spoon comes in handy. It will not only help in stirring your ingredients but also reach for that stubborn lemon seed resting at the bottom of the glass.

Citrus Squeezer

This one is a must-have if you are tired of squeezing those lemons using your bare hands. The good thing is that it is not tiring, and you get to squeeze all the juice from the fruit.

Ice Bucket

Almost every cocktail lover will use ice cubes in their drinks, and that is why you need to keep them ready and accessible for everyone in the house. An ice bucket can be a multi-purpose barware whereby it serves as a chilling point for your wine bottle as well as a home pub decoration.

Cork Screw

This is another must-have if you do not want to embarrass yourself when someone wants to enjoy that cold wine after dinner, but they can’t — the corkscrew is missing. A corkscrew will help you open all wine bottles without wasting time.

4. It Is Time to Stock Your Home Bar with Liquors of Your Choice

This is one of the best parts. The bar is ready, the glasses are available, and the barware is also a check. The next thing we need are liquors, alcohol, spirits, or whatever you want to call them.

When it comes to buying liquors, go for different varieties even if you love a specific drink or brand — your friends and relatives may not enjoy it, unfortunately. How you select your liquors determines the type of cocktails you can make.

Now here some of the most common ones you can always consider to accommodate everyone who visits your awesome home cocktail bar.

Vodka

Vodka has always been used to mix different types of drinks, and when you add ice, that’s a complete breeze, you cannot afford to miss. The minimum alcohol concentration for vodka is 40 percent.

Gin

Some decades back, gin was used as a type of herbal medicine — today, it is one of the best players when you talk of spirits. It comes with extreme taste and flavour, originating from juniper berries. Please don’t serve to beginners because it has this piney and dry profile for them to handle at first. Its alcohol concentration is 40 percent.

Tequila

Tequila is perfect when served with a bite of lime and can be taken as it is — a shot or can be mixed up in a margarita. Well, the drink is a bit notorious, and its alcohol concentration is 38 percent. Do not be surprised if you tend to forget your night after enjoying several shots of tequila.

Whisky

Which home bar comes without this prototypical drink? Yours shouldn’t be first. You can enjoy this one from anywhere, and it comes with full and long-lasting flavours. Alcohol concentration for whisky is also 40 percent, and with every sip, it leaves this warm feeling throughout the body.

Brandy

Brandy is considered a favourite for older generations, but this is not for you to decide, especially if you don’t like it. It may be a gem for not only your elderly friends but also the young ones. Brandy is a perfect drink after dinner, and its alcohol concentration is 35 percent.

Wine

Brandy is considered a favorite for older generations, but this is not for you to decide, especially if you don’t like it. It may be a gem for not only your elderly friends but also the young ones. Brandy is a perfect drink after dinner, and its alcohol concentration is 35 percent.

Beer

Brandy is considered a favourite for older generations, but this is not for you to decide, especially if you don’t like it. It may be a gem for not only your elderly friends but also the young ones. Brandy is a perfect drink after dinner, and its alcohol concentration is 35 percent.

Champagne

Which is a better drink to celebrate anything out there than champagne? You need it in your home bar for sure. It is popularly known for its cork popping and bottle spraying — we all want that once in a while. Most champagne bottles come with an alcohol concentration of 10 to 15 percent.

Non-alcoholic drinks

You cannot remember everyone else and forget the soberest souls in the house. Ensure that any of the home bar layouts you choose has a section for canned juice, plain soda, or any other non-alcoholic beverages. You can also prepare fresh cocktails when you have this group of people over by mixing different types of juice with a splash of seltzer.

5. You Need Bitters, Garnishes, and Mixers

Your home bar cannot be complete without these ingredients. You cannot spend money buying the best types of liquors out there, only to lack these essentials. They all complete your cocktails with the taste and feeling you want.

Bitters

These are high-proof alcohols that are infused with roots, herbs, and spices; they are used as additives in cocktails. They include coffee bitters, rhubarb bitters, or Angostura bitters.

Mixers

The mixers will give your alcoholic drink a different but better taste, rather than that flat brandy you were planning to serve them.

  • For carbonation, use tonic water, sprite, ginger ale, ginger beer, club soda, or coke.
  • For juice, mixers think of cranberry, orange, pineapple, olive, lemonade, apple, grape, or tomato.
  • For those who need dairies as a mixer, give them whipped cream, milk, eggnog, or ice-cream.
  • Finally, if someone needs syrups, caramel, tobacco, honey, Worcestershire, and grenadine would be a good choice.

Garnishes

Garnishes provide that final touch of ever drink, and while it is mostly used as a way to decorate the drink itself, you can also squeeze its juice out into the beverage. Remember to keep every garnish as fresh as possible. The best garnishes include limes, citrus fruits, rice, herbs, lemons, olive, or spices.

In a Nutshell

Your home bar is up and running now. You have all it takes to keep everyone satisfied and entertained with their favourite cocktail — Good job! If you can keep everything together as mentioned here, be sure you have an awesome home bar that you have always aspired to create. As for the decorations, do it as you wish, after all, it is your bar.

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