I drink with impunity...or anyone else who invites me - W.C. Fields
Hosting a party is a wonderful opportunity to bring together different friends for a fun evening of mingling and clinking of glasses. And at any successful party the glass should always be half full... Set up a self-service bar in an area that won't get too clogged with traffic - this is going to be a popular spot! The bar itself can be a hutch against the wall, a kitchen island or even a sofa table along a wide hallway. A great bar set up starts with the basics: liquors, mixers, garnishes, wines, beers, and plenty of ice. The variety and amount is up to you, the party, and the crowd you've invited. Use the following lists and links as a guide...
The basic 5 "well" liquors of any bar are a great staple and can be mixed and garnished into an unlimited number of drinks and cocktails. They are...
~ VodkaOther flavored liquors such as Triple Sec and Peach Schnapps, can be included as well. If its a martini crowd, you will need Vermouth both sweet and dry too. Display liquor bottles together at the center of the bar.
A selection of juices and sodas at the bar will allow guests to make anything from Cuba Libres to Cosmopolitans! Some classic options include...
~ Cranberry JuiceGroup mixers together at one end of the bar by the ice bucket and shakers.
~ Orange Juice
~ Pineapple Juice
~ Tonic Water
~ Club Soda
~ Lime Juice
Nothing finishes off a drink like a wedge of citris or an olive pick!
~ Lime wedges
~ Lemon wedges
~ Orange slices
~ Marichino cherries
~ Strawberries or Raspberries
Prepare/ slice garnishes ahead of time and arrange in various little bowls. Include festive picks and swizzle sticks for professional polish!
Wines and Beers
A red and a white wine help round out the bar selection. Beers can be seasonal or from microbreweries to introduce something new to guests. Keep white wines and beers chilled in a large tub of ice.
*Extra Festive Touch*
To set the bar apart, tie in the party's theme with cocktail napkins, glassware, and picks! Place a small book of cocktail recipes on the bar or display some classic recipes in frames to help inspire guest's creations.