Whether you already have a home bar or are looking to invest in one, you need to be fully informed about the different barware that is available, as well as which pieces are essential.
There are many different bar tools available to stock your home bar with, and they all serve different functions. Below are several must-have tools for your home bar.
The first tool that you need to have for your home bar is a bar cart, especially if you don’t already have a bar in your home. It can take any form, from a tray to a cabinet to an actual cart. When you make your choice, you’ll want to ensure it is sturdy and has enough space for all of your high-quality bar tools, glasses, and various alcohol.
A jigger is a tool that is used to measure amounts of liquor into mixing glasses and shakers. There are many different styles and sizes, but the average amount they can hold within their reservoir is 1.5 ounces. They are typically made of stainless steel, which makes them easy to clean.
Out of all of the tools that you’ll need for your home bar, a cocktail shaker is going to be one of the most important because it’s one of the ways to mix drinks. There are two common types of cocktail shakers.
- Boston Style: Out of the two common types of cocktail shakers, the Boston Shaker is the one that is more widely used, especially by professional bartenders. Essentially, it is two cups that fit together to form a tight seal, which holds the liquid within. There are various styles for a Boston shaker, like two metal cups or a metal cup and a glass.
- Cobbler Shaker: For those who have smaller hands or don’t want to have to invest in a shaker and a strainer, the cobbler shaker is a fantastic choice. It is smaller than the Boston Shaker, which makes it much easier to hold, and it contains a strainer that is built into the lid of the shaker.
A strainer is an important tool to have, especially if you’re using a Boston shaker. It will help drain out ice and any ingredients you may have used when mixing your drink, like fruit and herbs. There are three types of strainers that are commonly used.
- Hawthorne: The Hawthorne strainer is the option that is highly recommended because it is easy to use. They are simply placed over the top of the shaker, and they will easily filter out ice and ingredients.
- Julep: The Julep strainer is another great option for removing fruits and ice from shakers and mixing glasses, and it is simply placed over the glass and strained.
- Fine Mesh: A fine mesh strainer can be purchased by itself or used in conjunction with another strainer. It easily acts as a second strainer after using the primary to make sure that all of the unwanted ingredients are strained. It’s particularly useful when muddling herbs and fruit or when working with egg whites.
To chill your drinks, you’re going to need to add ice to mixing glasses and cocktail shakers. This means you’re going to need to invest in ice trays.
A bar spoon is another essential bar tool that your home bar needs. They are better than the typical spoon and can be used to stir drinks in mixing glasses and layer different alcohols and liquids into a drink to create a neat, layered look. There are three main types of bar spoons to choose from.
- Japanese-Style: This style is the most popular option of the three, and the standard bar spoon in this style can hold 2.5mL of liquid. One end of the spoon has a weighted teardrop design.
- American-Style: The least popular of the three options, the American bar spoon is also the simplest. Its standard size can hold 5ml of liquid, and the spoon generally features a small red cap at the end.
- European-Style: The European-style bar spoon has a small metal disc at the end, and the reservoir of the spoon can hold 2.5ml.
Used to gently mash ingredients like herbs and fruit, along with ice, a muddler is a must-have for your home bar.
There are many different cocktails that use fresh fruit juice, which makes a juicer an important tool to have in your home bar. With it, you’ll be able to incorporate fresh, delicious flavors into your drinks.
Of course, you’re going to need glasses in your home bar; how else are you going to enjoy your alcoholic drinks? There are several different types of glasses used for different drinks.
- Mixing Glass: A mixing glass is not for drinking but for stirring together different ingredients. It’s important to have a mixing glass for spirit-forward drinks that need to be stirred, not shaken, such as a Martini or Manhattan.
- Highball and Lowball: A lowball glass is also known as a rocks glass, and it’s are used for spirits that are served alone over an ice cube, like whiskey. Highball glasses can hold from 10 to 12 oz, and drinks in this glass are generally served with a substantial amount of ice.
- Wine: If you’re a wine lover, you’ll want to have wine glasses to enjoy your wine.
- Coupe Glass: A type of cocktail glass typically used for drinks that have been stirred or chilled.
By adding all of these essential bar tools to your home bar, you’ll have a better time preparing your drinks and entertaining guests.