When we went on our Disney cruise, we took a mixology class, and I was HOOKED! It is just so much fun to make your own drinks! It also never fails to impress my friends and guests!
When I got home from our cruise, I had five different mixed drink recipes just waiting for me to practice making them! However, I had absolutely no equipment or tools or a home bar to practice what I learned.
I needed to set up a small home bar on a budget!
Basic Home Bar Essentials Equipment
Here is the basic equipment you will want for your home bar so you can make your own mixed drinks.
If you aren’t sure how to make mixed drinks, I own the Ultimate Bar Book and HIGHLY recommend it! There is every drink you can imagine, including their history! The book tells you exactly what you need including the type of glassware recommended and step by step directions. It’s separated into chapters based on the types of spirits used – so a vodka section, a rum section, etc.
If you have the ability to buy the bar tools in a very nice set: I’d recommend this OXO Bar Tool Set.
If the set is too much for you at once, there are some more affordable, streamlined sets like this Stock Harbor Martini Shaker kit.
Or you can piece together your own kits, which is the choice I made as I felt it was more affordable for me at the time:
- jigger – This is to measure.
- bar spoon – For stirring. This bar spoon has a muddler.
- a muddler – this allows for you to mash up fruits, herbs, or spices and release their flavor in the drink. If you don’t want to use a specific muddler, you can use a wooden spoon or anything that would allow you to mash it.
- cocktail shaker
- citrus juicer – I don’t have one of these (yet), but I use a little hack of using a hand mixer beater to juice mine over a mesh strainer. Don’t be afraid to use what you have and be creative.
- citrus peeler – I do have one of these, and love it for multiple reasons.
- bottle opener
- corkscrew – I like this corkscrew because there is a bottle opener on it.
- cocktail strainer
I also like having specific drink glassware, but that isn’t a necessity. If you want to splurge on one particular type of glassware, I suggest high ball glasses. I also use them for milkshakes and smoothies because I just love the look of them.
What kind of alcohol should you stock your home bar with?
First of all, stock it with what you like. If you don’t like bourbon, don’t buy it. My favorite is rum, so I have several bottles of that in different flavors (coconut, pineapple).
I would consider the basics: rum, vodka, bourbon, whiskey, tequila, and gin. Again, just slowly add to those – start with your favorite spirit or two and then grow that as you can.
Here are two very simple recipes for mixed drinks. You won’t need anything special!
(I apparently like drinks named after states!)
Do you have a home bar set up? What do you consider the essential equipment and tools for a home bar? Did I leave anything out? I’d love to hear!
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