A guide to stocking the ultimate home bar

With the holidays over, it’s time to stay in and have people over with the left over spirits. This is a great time of year for hosting parties because people want to be in the comfort of a friend’s home and are back in town and ready to mingle.

If you’re setting up your first home bar there is no need to spend lots of money buying traditional furniture when a shelf or table will work just as well.

Large bars can have up to nine different varieties of spirits on hand. For a home setup, all you need is three to four of your favorite liquors. Choose between vodka, rum, gin, whiskey and tequila. If you’re having a party, you may want to have one or two extra varieties available if your friends’ drink preferences differ from yours. Also, if you’re planning on making a particular cocktail, such as a martini, be sure to have its lesser used ingredients on hand as well. For this drink, vermouth would also need to be picked up.

There are a variety of premade mixers available at stores these days, but they can take the fun and creativity out of preparing drinks. You can’t go wrong with fresh ingredients such as orange, cranberry and pineapple juice. Also, have tonic and lemon-lime soda available for easy mixing.

Regarding wine, it’s good to have a couple white and red varietals on hand. If you prefer more expensive brands, it’s fine to offer those to guests and stock them for yourself. However, if you enjoy the flavor of less expensive varieties, don’t shy away from offering these to your friends. You can always serve wine in a nice looking carafe to aerate it and hide the brand, if need be.

Party favors
Napkins – To make your home bar look extra special, pick up some personalized party favors. Customize napkins with a monogram or decorative motif. If it’s a holiday party you can write an appropriate message on the napkin as well.

Menus – A trend in dinner parties is to offer a couple choices of craft cocktails. To make it easier for guests to decide if they want to try the special beverage, print the drink names with their ingredients on a customized menu.

Cups – No matter if you are having a swanky party or a casual evening, you can customize your cups. They’re available in martini shapes and stadium cups to fit the range of parties you could be having throughout the holiday season.

To ensure your party is a memorable event, offer personalized party favors, napkins and more.

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