Holiday Entertaining: 7 Tips for Stocking a Proper Bar
There’s nothing I love more during the holidays than spending time with family and friends, nibbling on snacks, drinking yummy libations, and chit-chatting about anything and everything. If you’ve been following along with me for awhile, you know how much I love to entertain guests at my home and that, in my opinion, among the most important things to have prepared is the bar.
Now – don’t get me wrong – preparing and stocking a proper bar is no easy feat (as some of you may already know). It can take a lot of accommodation of specific requests and can even include running to the store mid-event to perfect the way you prepare your cocktail accoutrements!
Below, I’ve included my top 7 tips for preparing and stocking what I consider to be a proper bar:
Have plenty of wine (both red & white!)
Make sure the white wine is chilled ahead of time. If you have a sink, fill it with ice and nestle the bottles into it for quick chilling and easy access.
Make sure your ‘wine tools’ (i.e. corkscrew and foil cutter) are in good, working order and available for use.
Make sure a beer bottle opener is at-the-ready as well.
Have at least 3 “bar snack” options out for guests - any combination of the following:
Nuts (a variety is always nice)
Gourmet chips (you can’t go wrong with Kettle cooked)
Olives of any variety
Crudite and dips (we like hummus)
A cheese board
A charcuterie board
3. Have a good assortment of mixes and/or juices on-hand, including:
Juices (orange, grapefruit and tomato always come in handy)
AND our favorite MiddleBar bloody mary mix
4. Have a good variety of booze, such as the following:
You might even take into consideration any friend or family members’ preferred drink of choice and stock supplies for that!
5. Always keep drink garnishes on hand:
Lemon twists and wedges for squeezing
Lime twists and wedges for squeezing
Pro tip: zest and squeeze your citrus ahead of time and display in pretty glass vessels for quicker use!
Mint is a great garnish as well, and always makes its way to my bar (my favorite drink is vodka muddled with mint and lime).
6. Prepare your Glassware
Be sure to wipe down all of you crystal and glassware so it looks beautiful when served.
Even if you have a glass cabinet easily accessible, having plenty of glasses and an ice bucket out on a tray or on the bar-top is never a bad idea. This will allow guests to help themselves if you don’t have a bartender!
7. And last but clearly not least, make sure you have plenty of ice on-hand
This will ensure that you can mix the coldest, most refreshing drinks for your guests!