What’s better than a home bar? A home cocktail bar! Of course, there are a few specialty items you’ll need to buy if you want to produce the finest drinks and have a bar that feels complete. Here are the essentials.
Garnish and a Paring Knife
More goes into proper cocktails than spirits, mixers, and sugars. If you want to enjoy the genuine article, be sure to keep the right garnish on hand. For tequila-based cocktails, that means citrus fruits. For gin-based tipples, you need olives and onions. More experimental cocktails include ingredients like tabasco sauce. Once you’ve collected what you need, choose a paring knife for juicing, peeling, and cutting wedges.
What’s a martini without a martini glass? How can you circulate your whisky on the rocks without the right glass? You don’t need to be too exhaustive, but each home bar requires:
- Pint Glasses
- Traditional Tumblers
- Red Wine Glasses
- White Wine Glasses
- Champagne Flutes
- Martini Glasses
A Measuring Cup
Jiggers aren’t too practical, especially for a home bar. Instead, pick up a good measuring cup. With marks for precision pouring, you can make up a set of cocktails in a single vessel without too much effort.
Few bar accessories are more iconic than the shaker, which is a necessary tool in the making of most cocktails. Truth be told, you can stir a drink in any vessel that’s large enough, but you’ll want a traditional Boston shaker when stirring just isn’t enough.
Metal Bar Spoon
You need a bar spoon to properly stir each cocktail. Sure, you could go with plastic, but plastic spoons don’t provide quite the same visual flourish. A metal one will last longer and look cooler, and you won’t need to pay much extra to buy one.
A good strainer is your final necessity. There are plenty of different kinds; the ever-popular Hawthorne strainer has a looped spring and is used when straining shaken drinks, while a julep strainer looks much like a larger perforated spoon and is used for stirred drinks. You should be able to get away with using just one.