Looking to set up an envious at home bar? You’ve come to the right place to learn bar basics. Foodieandwine.com loves nothing more than entertaining at home. After years of entertaining, we’re pretty clued in to what the general public likes to consume at house parties.
While most enthusiasts starting an at home bar focus on the booze, FoodieandWine.com thinks it’s just as important to pay careful attention to the details. Who wants to be served a mojito in a champagne flute, due to lack of glassware options?
The below list is a good starting point when setting up an at home bar. These bar basics will lead you in the right direction.
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Red Wine Glasses
White Wine Glasses
Old Fashioned Glasses
* Splurge for quality brands. You will absolutely taste the difference between the low priced brand vs middle-high priced brand. You don’t have to break the bank, the mid range liquors will do. Our recommendations focus on great tasting options at a mid price point.
Vodka – Grab one basic vodka bottle (we prefer SKYY Vodka) and 1-2 flavored vodkas. Just say no to Popovs!
Gin – The flavor of gin varies greatly from brand to brand, so you may want to play around with a few brands until you land on your favorite. Both Tanqueray and Bombay Sapphire are preferred brands here at FoodieandWine.com, but you may find Beefeater is more in line with the flavor profile you’re looking to create.
Rum – In a perfect world, you’d stock up on both white rum and spiced rum as they are used in two very different drinks. White rum is used in mojitos, daiquiris, etc. while spiced rum is used in tropical drinks, rum and cokes, etc. If you can only afford one style of gin, pick the one best suited to the drinks you enjoy consuming.
Tequila – See the * above? It’s listed there for a reason. Don’t go cheap on Tequila. If you do, don’t say we didn’t warn you. Years of margaritas in Tijuana taught us this lesson. Just like rum, there are different varieties of tequila. White tequila is preferred for cocktails while gold tequila is well suited for margaritas. Also look for 100% agave tequila. You want true agave flavor vs sugar. Don Julio Blanco and Jose Cuervo Traditional Tequila Resposado are good options.
Once you have the above liquors dialed in, and you’re looking to take your at home bar to the next level, check out this additions:
Triple Sec – Orange flavored liquor used in margaritas and sweet mixed drinks. Cointreau is our favorite brand.
Chambord – Raspberry flavored liquor great in margaritas and sweet mixed drinks. Great option if you like adding ‘floaters’ to your mixed drinks.
Amaretto – Highly adaptable liqueur. Great neat, on the rocks or in a mixed drink. This almond flavored liqueur is also used in savory and sweet recipes. Disaronno Originale is or favorite brand, despite the fact it no longer brands itself as Amaretto.
Dry Vermouth – If you’re into making classic martinis, this is a must.
Bitters – Once you start upping your game, grab a bottle of bitters to start dashing in your drinks.