Entertaining your guests can be a tough job. Whether it's a holiday gathering or you want to make margaritas to liven up your shore themed living, a home bar can do just that. Make your home an oasis by following our tips for preparing to purchase a home bar, along with some suggestions on how to stock it.


One - Two Months Before Your Event: Figure Out Location & Supplies


One - Two Months Before Your Event: Figure Out Location & Supplies


If you have a smaller outdoor space, you might want to look into something that is portable. The Universal Bar pictured above is perfect for patios. It can fit all of your drinks and has plenty of drawers for extra space. Another good idea for an your outdoor space is an accompanying bar cart. This can be used next to your patio table to place drinks on.


For an indoor bar, consider placing it in a dining room or wherever you plan on entertaining your guests. This will help everyone learn where they can get a drink, plus allow you to socialize.


You'll also want to ensure that you have the right glasses and barware for your occasion. Below is a basic list of glasses and barware you should have:

Barware

  • Ice bag
  • Bar spoon
  • Muddler
  • Jigger
  • Cocktail shaker
  • Strainers
  • Ice cube trays
  • Napkins

Glassware:

  • Six to eight short glasses
  • Six to eight tall glasses
  • Eight to 12 basic stemmed wine glasses.


One Week Before: Do An Inventory


One - Two Months Before Your Event: Figure Out Location & Supplies


Go through the ingredients in your bar and see if you need to restock a few days before your event. Create a list of what you will need on a piece of paper. When you send out invitations and your guests reply yes, ask them what types of drinks they like, so that way you only stock your bar with what your guests request. Below are some common mixers and alcohol options.

Liquor

  • Cognac (Good for the holidays: sidecars, brandy milk punches, crustas, daisies, smashes.)
  • White Rum (for summertime daiquiris and mojitos)
  • Gin (Martinis, gin and tonics, Tom Collinses)
  • Bourbon (Manhattans, old fashioneds, whisky sours)
  • Vodka
  • Tequila (good option for summer parties: margaritas, sunrises, palomas)

Mixers

  • Club soda
  • Tonic water
  • Cola
  • Sprite or 7-up
  • Ginger ale
  • Orange, cranberry, tomato, and pineapple juice
  • Anogstura bitters (to add flavor to specific drinks)

Garnishes

  • Olives for martinis
  • Onions
  • Horseradish
  • Limes
  • Lemons
  • Tabasco sauce
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Sugar


Two Days Before: Do Your Shopping


One - Two Months Before Your Event: Figure Out Location & Supplies


Source: flickr.com/photos/whiskeytango/


You should ideally shop for your chasers and alcohol a few days in advance. Use the suggestions above to come up with your list. Create a budget on how much you want to spend, and know what your guests would like.


Day Before & Morning of: Get Organized


One - Two Months Before Your Event: Figure Out Location & Supplies


You should have your bar set up about an hour before guests arrive. A few hours before, ensure that your garnishesare fresh. Guests frequently arrive early, so ensure that you are ready for them. If you have guests that will need to drive home, please ensure that they do not indulge too much.