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At-Home Cocktail Bar Essentials | Bar Cart Building Guide

Staying in is definitely the new going on and I’m more than happy to swap my heels for slippers for cocktail night. Whether you’re still getting dressed up for Saturday nights in or if you’ve resigned yourself to cosy PJ living, you still deserve bar-quality drinks. Put down that pre-mixed tin and treat yourself to a proper night out in the comfort of your own home. There’s never been a better time to set up a bar cart, easily turning a corner of your living room into the cocktail bar of your dreams with just a couple of essentials and some fun décor. Fancy a proper pornstar martini without having to move from your sofa? Easy! Here are all the bar cart essentials you need to start your ultimate at-home cocktail bar.

#1 The right bar cart...

Unfortunately, we can’t all have a fully functioning bar in our home, but a chic bar cart is just as good. Whether you opt for a vintage style drinks trolley, or a multifunctional tray table, anything that looks cute and beautifully displays your drinks is perfect. We like ours set in the corner of the room and accessorised with a fun neon sign for a little extra something.

#2 The essential tools...

A reliable cocktail set is obviously an essential to create bar-quality drinks from your at-home bar. This set should include:

  • Shaker
  • A measuring jigger
  • Long spoon or stirrer
  • A strainer

But another essential is the right glasses! Matching your drink to the right glass will help it mix better and improve the overall taste as well as making it all feel fancier. So stock your bar with martini glasses, gin glasses and tall highball glasses.

#3 The basic spirits...

Once you’ve got your bar cart, you want to stock it with the essentials. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with a hundred and one ingredients you think you’ll need, but a small line-up of spirits covers the basic of most of your favourite drinks.

To be able to make a good range of drinks to suit any and all guests, we’d suggest stocking up on:

  • Vodka – A must-have for cosmos and martinis
  • Gin – For perfect G&Ts obviously.
  • Tequila – An essential ingredient for Friday night margaritas.
  • Light rum – The key ingredient for refreshing mojitos.

Why not decant them into beautiful labelled bottles? It’s all in the finishing touches.

Left image via @homeofcc

#4 Liqueurs and extras…

As well as your basic spirits, there’s a couple of little extras that will level up your drinks to bar-quality by giving you those authentic flavours. You’ll only need a splash, but a little goes a long way.

  • Sugar syrup – Whether you make your own or buy it, sugar syrup is going to sweeten up all those fruity drinks and let you customise each drink to your taste. A vanilla syrup can also be really helpful!
  • Coffee liqueur – A must if you’re planning to be making espresso martinis or other coffee-based bevs.
  • Vermouth – If you’re a fan of neat drinks like negronis, vermouth is what will give you that rich herbal taste.

#5 In the fridge...

Most cocktails are heavy on the mixers and juices, so make sure you’ve got a good range stocked up in the fridge. We’d suggest…

  • Tonic – Not only is it essential for G&Ts, but tonic is a staple for making any kind of spritz.
  • Fruit juices – Orange, cranberry and pineapple are our must-haves, coming up in a lot of recipes.
  • Fruit and garnishes – Stock up on lemons, limes, Maraschino cherries and coffee beans to make your drinks look as good as they taste!
Written by Lucy Harbron
2020-11-26 15:52:00 0 viewed