Setting Up the Perfect Bar
Since cocktail making has become so mainstream, there are a variety of bar cart out there for purchase. Doesn't need to be refrigerated, so just store it in a cool, dry place free of a lot of sunlight.
You only need about 6 of three basic types of glasses. A short glass (also referred to as a low ball glass or rocks glass), a tall glass (pint sized or smaller, referred to as a high ball or collins glass), and a glass with a stem for wine, margaritas, or martinis. Also margaritas and martinis have their own specific types of glass, you can always substitute the low ball/rocks glass instead of investing in both of those types. Be sure to visit Goodwill or other thrift stores to find glassware. You can buy just one of each type you need and save money.
With the wide range of creative cocktails recipes out there these days, you'd think you'd need the whole liquor department at you reach…not so! About 6-8 different base spirits such as vodka, brandy, gin, tequila, rum, whiskey are a great start. Also include a few mixers like vermouth, tonic water, fruit juices and bitters. Once you've mastered the classics, move on to the more exotic type liquors such as flavored vodkas, liqueurs, or more expensive spirits.
Always make sure to have ice on hand. No one likes a warm drink. For cocktail parties, allow for around a pound of ice for each guest. There are many portable ice makers available to purchase if you don't have once in your refrigerator. Or stock pile ice if you know a party is coming up.
For the Non-Drinker
Not everyone is a drinker, so make sure to have soda, fruit juices or soda for your guests. You can also mix juices with a little tonic water or seltzer water for a little flair.
Perhaps you have a guest over that requests a drink you are not familiar with? Don't panic! Always keep a bartender guide handy to make sure you have a recipe. With today's technology, there are several apps available to download on your phone or tablet. Visit The Craft of the Cocktail to order a bartending guide featuring recipes, techniques and more!