There’s nothing quite like the sense of pride that comes from crafting the perfect drink at home. But whether you enjoy making classic drinks or prefer experimenting with new flavours, there’s only so much you can do in the kitchen.
That’s where the beauty of home bars comes in.
Investing in the necessary bar equipment for your home bar is as vital as the ingredients for the drinks themselves. With the right equipment, we guarantee you’ll be able to make drinks like a professional time and time again. This guide will take you through 8 things you need for your home bar.
Seating is a crucial element in any home bar – you want to be able to relax with your guests without getting too uncomfortable. Seating really enhances your home bar experience and creates a more authentic atmosphere.
If you have limited space, bar stools are a great option for your home bar. They fit snugly against the bar without taking up too much surface space. If you’re lucky enough to have a whole room for your home bar, however, you may prefer to use chairs to create that all-important communal vibe.
For Modern Home Bars: If you want to create a contemporary feel in your home bar, opt for a modern bar stool that is both stylish and sophisticated. Our Faux Leather Crescent Bar Stool is a great addition to any home bar - it features a soft padded seat and curved backrest for maximum comfort. If you like the modern vibe but would prefer a more robust chair, however, look no further than our Club Bar Stool. The Club Bar Stool is manufactured from solid beech, offering durability and a high-quality seating experience.
For Colourful Home Bars: If a bright and colourful home bar is what you want, then a bright and colourful home bar is what you’ll get! Our Core Mid Bar Stool in Ribbed Lascari Teal holds a unique retro-inspired look, thanks to the faux leather padded seat and tubular frame. It will successfully add a pop of colour to any home bar without looking too ‘in your face’.
With that being said, there’s nothing wrong with going as bold as can be. Our Spring Bar Stool in Tropical Green will be sure to bring Tropicana vibes to your home bar all year round.
For Rustic Home Bars: For rustic home bars, you may want to incorporate novelty items like our Cork Medium Stool into your seating arrangements. If a sophisticated yet rustic touch is what you’re after, however, take a look at our Malibu High Stool. The Malibu High Stool combines genuine leather with a rustic wooden finish; it’s a hot favourite.
Using the right glassware in your home bar will help to elevate your drinks and create a more authentic experience. But with so many glasses to choose from, it can become overwhelming to know what to have in your home bar.
There are five main types of glasses to consider when purchasing items for your bar.
Beer Glasses: Beer glasses are a must-have in any British bar. There are several varieties of beer glass to choose from, but we recommend starting with the Munique Stemmed Beer Glasses for classic shape and durability.
Wine Glasses: Wine glasses can completely transform your wine tasting experience. There’s something very satisfying about sipping fine wine from a proper wine glass. Using glasses like our Michelangelo Red Wine Glasses in your bar will help to enhance the subtle notes and undertones of wine (while looking classy at the same time!).
Gin Glasses: For gin enthusiasts, the right gin glasses will not only enhance the flavours of the gin but also work to keep your drink at the right temperature. Take a look at our Essence Gin Balloon Glass - it features a classic balloon shape and will complement any gin drink perfectly.
Cocktail Glasses: If you love to make cocktails, cocktail glasses that showcase your creations perfectly are a must. For example, Margarita’s must be served in signature Margarita Glasses and no Martini can be served without the classic triangular-shaped Martini Glass.
Shot Glasses: Finally, shot glasses are essential for when the party starts to get lively. Pour your favourite spirits into shot glasses and watch the madness unfold! Alternatively, shot glasses can also be used as measuring cups for when making mixed drinks.
Speaking of measuring drinks, bar measures help to get the job done properly, especially if you enjoy making cocktails or other types of drinks that contain multiple ingredients. If you’re serious about measuring drinks, consider using bar optics to make your home bar both professional and functional at the same time.
There are several options to choose from when it comes to bar measures. What you use will depend on the drinks you’re making:
Jigger Measures: Jigger measures are two-sided measuring cups that can be used to measure out spirits for cocktail making. They range in sizes and typically have fill lines on the side to help you measure out the perfect amount.
Thimble Measures: Thimble measures are usually made from copper or stainless steel and are typically used for whiskey, gin, vodka or rum. They’re marked to the brim and come in several different sizes. These measures are ideal for cocktail making or if you’re pouring single spirits over ice.
Wine Measures: Finally, wine measures work in a similar way to thimble measures but for larger quantities. They help to measure the perfect amount of wine per person. It can be difficult to measure out the right quantity of wine, particularly when suitable measurements differ for red and white wine. With a wine measure, you can take comfort in knowing that you’re getting the right measurement each time.
Small Home Bars: If you’re a beer drinker, the Husky Stella Artois Mini Fridge will look great in any home bar. It features a branded design and double-glazed door, ensuring your beers and lagers are always crisp and cold. As a mini fridge, it won’t take up too much room, making it perfect for smaller home bars.
Large Home Bars: If you have more room to spare, the Blizzard BAR-1 Bottle Cooler is a must-have. It can store up to 130 bottles and creates a wonderful display in any home bar. This fridge achieves brilliantly low temperatures, ensuring any bottled drink remains chilled.
If you’re someone who enjoys hosting parties or larger gatherings, drink dispensers are an essential item for your home bar. With a drink dispenser, you can create larger quantities of your chosen punch or cocktail so that people can help themselves. This prevents you from needing to be on bar duty for long periods of time.
Small Home Bars: If fun and compact is what you’re after, say hello to the Gulp Beer Tower. This dispenser holds up to 3 litres of drink yet features a slim design; making it perfect for smaller spaces. Simply place it in an accessible area and relax as your guests take care of themselves.
Large Home Bars: Our Dual Barrel Beverage Dispenser is perfect for BBQs and parties, providing up to 10 litres of juice, cocktails or fruity punch for you and your guests to enjoy. It’s housed on a wire stand for a rustic yet charming finish and works brilliantly at outdoor gatherings.
If a dual dispenser isn’t enough, check out the Del Sol Triple Drinks Dispenser. This dispenser holds three 4-litre dispensers on a stand, so you can have different drink options for your guests. Maybe have a few alcoholic options and a non-alcoholic choice for those who are not drinking?
For cocktail connoisseurs, cocktail sets are a great item to have in your home bar. Cocktail sets contain all of the essential items you’ll need to make your favourite drinks, from shakers and measuring tools to strainers and mixing tools.
Drinkstuff Cocktail Set: The Drinkstuff Cocktail Set is our exclusive kit which contains everything you’ll need to create professional and delicious cocktails. It includes an 100 Cocktail Recipe Book, a shaker with built-in strainer, a wooden muddler for crushing ingredients, and measuring tools so you can whip up tasty beverages with ease.
Barman’s Barware Kit: The Barman’s Barware Kit is perfect for amateurs and experienced cocktail makers alike. It’s beautifully presented in a gift box and contains high-quality equipment, such as mixing spoons, a range of strainers and a Boston cocktail shaker.
Manhattan Cocktail Shaker Set: The Manhattan Cocktail Shaker Set is ideal for budding mixologists. It contains a stainless steel cobbler shaker, a single and double thimble measure, wooden muddler and much more! Be prepared to make countless cocktails with ease.
Bonus Tip!: It’s also a great idea to have accessories on hand to add a flourish to your drinks, such as cocktail decorations and cocktail trees. While these added touches aren’t essential, they really do add a wonderful finish to your drinks. They also make the whole experience that bit more memorable.
To create the best wine and champagne tasting experience, it’s important to serve both types of drink at the right temperature. The best way to achieve this, while also adding an element of class, is by keeping your bottles in champagne buckets or wine coolers. Whether you’re serving these drinks at a dinner party or just enjoying a glass or two with friends, buckets and coolers are a must-have.
For Small Events: Our Stainless Steel Double Walled Wine Cooler is perfect for small events that involve wine. This cooler retains a cold temperature for any pre-chilled bottle and features double-walled construction for maximum effect. It can withstand knocks and bumps, and it looks incredibly stylish in the centre of a table or on your bar.
For Large Events: The Galvanised Steel Oval Party Tub is a great option for parties or celebrations – it’s easy to use and looks great. All you need to do is fill it with ice and place the drinks inside. Your guests can then help themselves to a cool drink whenever they want.
If you want something more contemporary and stylish, check out the Acrylic Plastic Wine Cooler. It keeps your wine at the optimum temperature and features a clear design so you can easily see when the bottle needs replacing.
No bar is complete without bottle openers – they’re a staple item if you’re serving bottled drinks. There are actually many different styles of bottle openers to choose from; we recommend having more than one in your home bar so you’re always prepared.
Bar Blades: Bar blades are favoured by professionals all over the world. They are made from durable stainless steel and feature two ends; one to open bottles and another to seamlessly guide you around the bar. Using a bar blade will give you greater leverage on those hard-to-open-bottles while also making it easier to fetch cold drinks.
If you’ve got more space and want to add a professional-looking item to your home bar, check out the wall-mounted Cap Catcher Pillar. You and your guests can quickly remove bottle caps, and thanks to the hanging bucket underneath, you don’t have to worry about making a mess. This device is simple but highly effective.
Now that you know exactly what your home bar needs, there’s nothing stopping you from creating the bar of dreams. Read on to discover some frequently asked questions surrounding home bars; we hope the answers will provide further assistance regarding your home bar experience!
There is a subtle but important difference between a wet bar and a dry bar. Establishing the difference between the two will help you to understand what type of bar you wish to have in your home.
Let’s take a closer look at the definitions of both type of bar:
Dry Bar: A dry bar is an area built into a room which is designed to hold all of your drinks and drink-making items. You can have everything listed in this guide in a dry bar, but you’ll need to run to the kitchen if you wish to do some cleaning up.
Wet Bar: A wet bar is similar, but it has the important addition of a sink with running water and a drain. This can be helpful when you’re cleaning up glasses, spillages or rinsing shakers in between drinks.
The type of bar you choose will usually depend on where you choose to entertain. For example, a home bar in a shed will likely be a dry bar due to a lack of plumbing in the garden. Home bars inside the house, however, can be transformed into wet bars if that’s what you desire.
Budget also plays a key role – if you’re set on creating the ultimate bar experience, then you may want to make adjustments to your space to turn it into a wet bar. If you’re looking to keep costs down, however, a dry bar is the best and most affordable option (unless the space you’re using is already fitted with such facilities).
There are many drinks to choose from when it comes to stocking a home bar. As a general rule of thumb, when it comes to choosing the drinks for your bar, versatility is key. You want to be able to whip up a range of beverages to suit any guests needs, so it’s important to have a foundation of great alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks to choose from.
To avoid wasting money, only stock up on the drinks that you know you’ll use. Think about the types of drinks you enjoy creating and base your stock off those recipes.
The following drinks will create a well-rounded bar while also providing you with a host of opportunities for different mixed cocktails and drinks:
Vodka: Vodka is an essential spirit for any home bar. It has a clean flavour and mixes well into most drinks, including mixers like lemonade. Budget-friendly vodka is fine for mixing into already-flavoursome drinks that will mask the taste, however with drinks like Vodka Martini’s, it’s better to choose a top-shelf vodka.
Gin: Gin is also a versatile ingredient that can work well in anything - from a classic Gin and Tonic to a Dry Martini. There are numerous brands of gin on the market, but a dry gin is a good starting point for your home bar.
Tequila: If you’re someone who enjoys shots or you like to craft Margaritas, tequila is a must. The most versatile tequila is a blanco or silver tequila, which has a softer and more rounded taste.
Rum: Rum is a great addition for your bar, especially if you love making cocktails. From Daiquiris to Mojitos, rum can completely transform the taste. It’s beneficial to have two bottles of rum on standby – one white and one dark or spiced rum. This offers more flexibility in terms of the drinks you can create.
Whiskey: Whiskey is a drink that can once again be applied to different situations. Just remember that there are differences between Irish and Scotch whiskey - it’s worth finding out which style you like before investing in a bottle for your own home bar.
Liqueur: Liqueurs are often used alongside spirits to create cocktails, so it’s a good idea to have a few bottles to hand. What’s more, these drinks last quite a long time so they’re a good investment. A few great options include Amaretto, Kahlua, Vermouth and orange liqueurs such as Cointreau or Grand Marnier. From here, you can create anything from Margaritas and Cosmopolitans to White Russians and Amaretto Sours.
Non-Alcoholic Options: Lastly, it’s important to think about those who don’t drink. Being a great host is all about considering the needs of your guests, so it’s important to have options on hand for those who are driving or simply don’t want to drink alcohol. Juices are a great option, as are mixers like soda water and ginger beer – all of these can be used in alcoholic beverages, too.
Creating a home bar in any capacity is a fun and exciting experience. What’s even better, is that you don’t need to have endless amounts of space to create a professional looking bar at home! Just as long as you have enough space to make and serve drinks, you’re good to go. When you think about it, every home deserves a bar...
With help from a seating area, specific tools and glassware, along with a few base spirits, you can form the foundations of a fantastic home bar. Whether you’re new to the art of mixology or you’re an expert wanting to upgrade your set-up, we hope you found this guide helpful. Don’t forget to send us pictures of your home bars that feature Drinkstuff products! We’d love to see your creations in all their glory.