How Do You Stock a Bar?


Quick Answer

Stock a home bar by buying basic equipment, essential liquors, and some mixers, and you’ll be ready to mix cocktails for any party. You should buy at least one bottle of each of the most common liquors; cognac, white rum and gin are good to have, as well as bourbon, vodka and tequila.

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Full Answer

  1. Buy equipment

    An ice container, a bar spoon and a muddler are invaluable. You’ll also need a cocktail shaker and a strainer.

  2. Invest in glassware

    You need three simple types of glasses: a glass with a stem, a short, heavy-bottomed glass for shots or liquor on the rocks, and a narrow glass. Six to eight of each type is usually adequate. Add additional specialized styles as your budget allows.

  3. Buy liquor

    You can make great cocktails without overstocking your cabinet full of fancy liquors. Choose mainly those needed for your favorite drinks. After you have purchased the basics, you can supplement with dark rum, brandy or whiskey.

  4. Stock up on mixers

    You’ll need several mixers and flavorings on hand. Cointreau is used in many cocktails, and you need red vermouth for Manhattans and white vermouth for martinis. Bitters add flavor and help other ingredients blend. Be sure to stock up on soda and juice, too.

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