Having a proper home bar is not just a matter of practicality, it’s an opportunity to set up a stylish display of bottles and barware that will instantly make a space feel gracious and guest-ready. As designer Jan Roden’s bar, shown above, shows, a simple collection of artfully arranged spirits, mixers, and a few silver touches on a shelf looks effortlessly elegant and ready for entertaining.
Whether you prefer to serve up drinks at home—preferably in a sophisticated space a la the Steven Gambrel setup (top), which features a case piece by Paul Benson (De Sousa Hughes carries items from the line)—or to slip into a stool and have your favorite cocktail crafted by an expert (we’re currently dreaming of ordering a Manhattan at the Catherine MacFee-designed Chalkboard in Healdsburg, above), a great bar area helps everything go down a bit smoother. In addition to exuding just the right mood, a few key elements can make or break your setup, so be sure to read our TSG Tip on the well-stocked bar, and invest in a few fundamentals:
1. Martini pitcher and stirrer from Belle Cose 2. Classic pewter bar spoon from Table Matters 3. Jack Rudy small batch ingredients from Southern Season 4, 5, 6. Sphere ice molds, jigger and mini whisk all from the Happy Cook 5. 6. 7. Vintage Cocktails bar recipe book from Oxford Exchange 8. High-quality spirits like Belle Meade Bourbon from Green Brier Distillery 9. Unique small-batch bitters from Southern Season.
To take your bar up a notch, in the vein of the supremely cool setup by Martha Angus (top) and sophisticated, spirit-infused scene by TSG co-founder Christy Ford (above), vintage finds and statement-making accessories will help the area come together like a perfectly shaken Martini. Here are a few of our favorites:
1. Keep your cubes oh so cool in an acorn and oak leaf ice bucket from Maze Home. 2. A french pastry serving display, available from Fireside Antiques, is the ideal storage solution for your collection of artisanal bitters. 3. Keep your bottles beautifully contained on this silver plated and mirrored tray available from Robuck 4. Arrange your chic bar setup on a late 19th c. french butcher’s table from FOUND for the Home. 5. An art deco tantalus, circa 1930 from Simon Teakle, will have your guests buzzing before they even take a sip.