It’s Friday! For a lot of people that means the beginning of the weekend as soon as they’ve finished work or studying. Maybe they’ll spend the evening with friends or co-workers eating in a restaurant or drinking in a bar? Perhaps at the cinema with family or a small get together at home?
Whisky is one of the main alcoholic drinks you will find within my home. Not only does it provide bold and interesting taste it lasts a very long time so naturally, it needs a place to be stored.
After the kitchen, the living room is the second place where it is kept and not just for space reasons but because it is also a social area too. When people come over there is no messing about going back and forth to the kitchen because whisky can be served at room temperature and it is easier to wind down and relax.
It is important to utilise what you already have before you think about buying something to start off or add to this area. I already had everything in separate areas being used for different things before I decided to make it a bar area. For example;
- A few trays for food
- A stainless steel spirit measurer
- A table
- A water decanter with matching glasses
- Books regarding alcohol for decoration
- One too many waiters friends
- Pocket sized books about alcohol
- Shot glasses (also can be used for measuring spirits)
I already had decanters and various glasses for different types of alcohol in boxes that had been received as gifts so instead of just waiting for the perfect moment or a special occasion, why not just use them? That way they’re not wasting away, accumulating dust and it adds character to the home. They’re also good conversation starters on top of the mini bar area itself.
You should consider where you want to have you mini bar and where you will get the most use out of it. Will it be in the dining room, living room or a space in the kitchen? I live in an apartment with no dining room and a small kitchen so it ideal for me to have mine in the living room. It’s the most social place in the apartment like many other homes.
If you research ‘Mini Bar’ you’ll notice that the majority of images that are shown reveal a layered mini bar, usually on a cart. For example, there maybe glasses on one level, alcohol on another. Nonetheless, many choose to have them on;
- In living/dining room cabinets
- A simple tray
- In a built-in wardrobe
- An empty corner
This list is endless, it just depends on how you want it to look. It can be as exposed or as inclosed as you like. Just do what you can with the space you have.
However, I only have one level because I decided to use a table that wasn’t really being utilised for anything else apart from excess clutter. Although, I’d layer it myself by adding a small shelf where I can keep extra glasses for water, my spirit measurer, waiters friends, lavender in a nice cider bottle and some books about alcohol. In terms of the whisky and wines I have, I keep the majority of them on a space on the floor beside the mini bar and keep the special ones in the kitchen.
Although you may enjoy a selection of different alcohol, I would say the first step towards creating your own mini bar is deciding what your main poison is. Cocktails, spirits, or wine?
Mine is wine and whisky. I usually take my whisky straight and buy wine whenever I want to drink it or if my friends are coming over. I very rarely drink cocktails so the area itself is rather simple. I built my mini bar around those drinks and my tastes. I keep whisky and wine glasses on a tray, a waiters friend and a stainless steel spirit measurer.
There is no perfect way to stock a homemade bar no matter what anyone tells you. You like what you like, you don’t have to have a certain amount of particular things there just for the sake of it but if it for an occasion or you have friends coming over it is the opportunity to experiment and change things up a little.
If you mainly drink wine, ideally you would have a variety of glasses for particular types of wine you enjoy such as;
- A Burgundy glass
- A Pinot Noir glass
- A Viognier glass
- A sparkling wine glass
However, it doesn’t have to be that complicated, you can have versatile glasses or red/white specific glasses. It all depends on you, what you like and how you would like things to appear.
Wine isn’t to everyones taste so if you prefer spirits whether it be gin, vodka, whisky or any other spirit, your mini bar area can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be. If you mainly take your whisky straight, like I do, your mini bar are can be simple. Some whisky glasses, a spirit measurer, a decanter for your favourite spirit or perhaps some shot glasses too.
If you like to mix your spirits with something else or like cocktails in general, you may want to consider making space for items such as;
- A bar spoon
- A citrus juice press
- A cocktail shaker
- A cocktail strainer
- Fresh lemons or limes (mojitos, lemon drops, summer hummer cocktails)
- Cinnamon and anything else you want
Even if you don’t drink, you can have this area decorated with other drinks as well as something to offer for when guests come over.
Mini bars can be as simple or as complex as you want. They make the home more social and it makes life a little easier you and you friends or family don’t want to go out to drink. It is fun to create and it adds more personality to the home.