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Having a home bar is one thing, but stocking it well is equally important. If you’d like to be able to please several tastes, you’ll need a good variety of spirits and liqueurs. Don’t worry- you don’t have to purchase too much to have a good selection to choose from. No matter who you have over, you’ll be sure to please! Other than the obvious (alcohol), there are other items you’ll benefit from having and shouldn’t be missed: seating, tools, décor.
1) First things first (and the fun part): liquor.
- The most frequently consumed drinks are made of three things: vodka, gin, and bourbon. Sure, there’s plenty more, but ensuring that your bar is stocked with these three is a good place to start. Each has its own unique taste and qualities, and can utilize the same mixers or liqueurs. If you have room to expand, add on some rum, tequila, or whiskey.
- From mixed fruity drinks to martinis, you’ll be prepared for every taste.
As far as liqueurs, bitters and mixers go, there’s an equally huge variety to choose from, but a few that will prove as versatile as your liquors:
- Domaine de Canton: delightful ginger flavor, delicious with vodka.
- St. Germaine: also great in gin or vodka, a wonderful elderflower flavor that livens up a simple vodka soda!
- Triple Sec: that sweet addition to lots of cocktails!
- Vermouth: a mainstay for any martini. Depending how people take it, all that really varies is how much you put in, and the type of vermouth.
- Bitters: a frequent ingredient for several cocktails, (even great for an upset stomach!).
- Soda & tonic water: the basics. Without these two, you won’t have much of a base for several drink recipes.
- Juice: having any type of citrus-based juice is always good to have on hand.
3) Bar stools:
- Before you can really get much further, it’s important for you to have a good set of bar stools. Taking adequate time to choose the best fit (height wise especially), style and design will allow you and your guests to have a thoroughly enjoyable experience.
- There’s lots of options out there; be sure to consider what materials and functionality will work best with your taste and needs!
4) Glass ware:
- Depending on the type of drinks you’re serving, there are different types of glasses that generally accompany them. Without being super fancy, you can get away with having just a few varieties on hand:
- Martini glasses, wine glasses, rocks glasses (tall or short)
- You don’t have to buy too many things to have just enough tools:
- Something to measure your alcohol with (shot glass)
- Small sharp knife to chop limes/lemons/other fruits.
- Shaker set for getting everything mixed nicely!
- Long spoon- some drinks (martinis especially) don’t bode well with shaking, instead preferring a simple stir.
- If you’re making a drink that has some fibrous elements to it that you don’t want to appear in the drink, a strainer is a good thing to have on hand.