Starting your Home Bar

November 19, 2017

While many people enjoy a good night in a pub, there is something unique and special when you can relax in the comfort of your own home and have a glass of your favorite drink in your Saturday night leather armchair.


With the rising cost of a night out and the smoking ban, setting up a home bar is becoming a usual feature in many homes and today, we will teach you how to bring this awesomeness in your own 4 walls!


Types of Home Bars

Mobile and Cabinets Bars

The most familiar type of home bar is drinks cabinet. It can store all your drinks, glassware and bar equipment and can vary in both looks and price; from antique mahogany to simple modern designs. 



Rolling Drinks Cart

This is a perfect idea for those people who don’t have a lot of space available. Any type of cart will do as long as you can fit a selection of bar accessories, glasses, and drinks. It can all be packed away when not required and you can design it as you like (consider painting the cart if you like the style, but not the color, for example).


Permanent Bar

Setting up a permanent home bar in the comfort of your home can be costly and difficult. The important thing that you should consider is the space. Make sure that it has an access to electricity and water if you want to place a fridge. Make sure to plan out the space before you start building and consider the materials needed (and wanted) for your bar.


Creating Your Home Bar

Whatever type of home bar you choose, you will need drinks. If you have a big permanent bar then you may want to stock a bottle of everything, especially if you do a lot of entertaining. But when it comes to smaller bars, just get what you know people will drink. There is no point of buying costly liquors if nobody ever drinks them. The same thing applies to glasses. At first, you can stick to basics such as long glasses (highball), short glasses (lowball), wine glasses and beer glasses. 

What bottles exactly you should start with and how to gradually fill your collection without breaking the bank will be explained in our next section of "Starting your Home Bar".


Bar Equipment
It's good to know the type of drinks you will serve to know what kind of equipment you will need. Some of the most important things are:

  • Ice Bucket

  • Shaker

  • Jigger

  • Strainer

  • Muddler

  • Bar Spoon

  • Corkscrew

At a later point, you can always add things like pour spouts, Whiskey stones, a garnish tray, tongs, etc.


Some Things to Consider when Designing your Home Bar

Design that meets your Purpose
Think about what you want this place to be. If you want a cozy home bar where you and your wife/husband/girlfriend/boyfriend/dog/cat can hang out together and have a peaceful drink, go with a design that fits this mood. If you want to invite your 30 buddies over every weekend to watch the game, you might not want to set up mood lights, but rather some big TV(s) and some sturdy furniture.


Match the Furniture, too!
As already said above, the furniture matters just as much as the difference between a 70" TV or a mood light. One of the most important features when it comes to this is where people are going to sit, a.k.a. your bar stools. When selecting your bar stools, there are many ways to go: wooden, steel, plastic, upholstered, with backrest, with armrest, etc. We are not gonna tell you, which ones to pick, but make sure to not be too cheap with the stools. There is nothing worse than a wiggling or an uncomfortable bar stool! 


Video and Sound Systems
Video and Sound Systems can be an important part of your home bar. Avoid awkward silence when you just brought home a date (or your partner after dinner) by switching on one of these babies. 


Fridge in your Home Bar
Mini fridge (with freezer)! Need I say more?! Watch out, they also come with an ice machine so you never have to buy ice again!




The advanced bar builder won't be satisfied with regular IKEA room lighting so we will opt for something a little fancier. Lighting makes a lot of difference in setting the mood for your bar. Talking about IKEA, we found a relatively cheap method to change the mood and lighting when it comes to your bar as they have recently introduced the DIODER for example.


Once your home bar is built, the best liquors to start with are basic liquors such as vodka, gin, and whisky. It is useless to buy expensive liquors if no one wants to drink them. What kind of brands those are and how you can set this up without breaking the bank (or your taste buds) will be explained in our next article on how to build your home bar so stay tuned!

Now, get yourself a drink (in your favorite bar, for now until you're done building your home bar). You deserve it!




Joshua Mentrup

Alcohol Connoisseur


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