I’ve been meaning to share a post on how to style a bar cart for over a year now. I kept taking pictures and would then delete them but I finally got my act together, stocked up and dusted off some bottles and can now share how we style our bar cart! There are thousands of bar carts out there. Vintage, glass, modern, whimsey, industrial. The list goes on and on.
Mikey and I have more modern/contemporary taste and I couldn’t find a bar cart that I liked for so long. I had my Mom searching the antique shops up in WI and stopping at every garage sale she could find. No luck. It was about a year and a half ago that I stumbled upon this cart at CB2 and fell in love. It was just what I had been looking for! The cart is a super reasonable price and even though it’s not technically a bar cart, we absolutely love it.
I also searched for letters to hang above our bar for about 6 months and finally found the combination of letters that I liked online. I love that the letters set the area apart from the rest of the room and add a bit of fun with the large yellow R. It’s funny how the adults who come over always comment on the bar cart right away!
We always have a few different bottles and mixers on our cart as our “essentials,” if you will. They include vodka, whiskey and gin as well as vermouth, bitters and soda water. It seems that you can always make up a concoction as long as you have those basics.
Our favorite basics are:
Vodka: Kettle One, CH Distillery.
Gin: Few, Barrel Aged and Hendricks.
Sweet Vermouth: Tribuno, Gallo or whatever fun bottle we see when we need more.
Whiskey: Makers Mark, High West (we typically always have a bottle of Makers and then Mikey keeps a nicer whiskey in his decanter).
We also stock:
Bitters: Angostura, Fee Brothers, and Peychauds,
Depending on the season we stock other liquiors like Bailey’s and Kahlua in the winter and a flavored vodka in the summer. We are not big rum fans but we will buy white rum for Mojitos in the summer as well as tequila for margaritas.
Ginger Beer (for Moscow Mules),
Soda Water, Tonic Water,
Diet Coke & 7up,
San Pellegrino Sparkling Fruit Beverage (so good mixed with Vodka),
Stiegl Radler (grapefruit beer, best with a shot of Gin or Vodka).
Wine and Champagne: We always try to keep a few bottles of wine for the occasional pop-in guest (and because we love to drink it as well). I suggest you offer/stock the following,
Pinot Grigio/Chardonnay, Malbec/Merlot/Bordeaux, Rosé.
Cordials/Port: We are not huge cordial drinkers; we do, however, love a good port. Mikey and I fell in love with port while on vacation in Jamaica. It’s a long story that involves friends we made from England and an expensive bottle that had to be finished before we all left for home…We keep one bottle for that random occasion and always feel fancy/nostalgic when we sip them from my Grandmas old cordial glasses.
Our Favorites: Tawny Port, Vintage Port, Ruby Port.
We have a container filled with cocktail accessories in the back (hard to see in the pictures) as well as a couple of shot glasses and a shaker. I don’t remember where we found our shaker but you can find them anywhere and for any price point! We have an ice bucket and a wine chiller.
We got our ice bucket and chiller from Crate and Barrel 6 years ago but I like the links above from CB2. We love the shiny, stainless look but you can go for more vintage, leather or mixed metal looks as well, depending on what you like!
As far as glassware, we have the copper Moscow Mule mugs, some vintage, silver and glass cordial glasses we inherited from my Grandma (I’m obsessed) and then some gold, decorative glasses for cocktails. I don’t stock my champagne glasses and wine glasses on the cart because they get too dusty. We have a cabinet filled to the brim with pint glasses, wine glasses, champagne flutes, margarita & martini glasses…the list goes on. Mikey managed a bar once upon a time and the glassware he collected over the years…yeesh!
I hope you find this post helpful! We have had so much fun stocking and finding the perfect pieces for our bar cart! Do you have a specific bottle of booze, wine, etc. that you always keep stocked at your house? We love making new cocktails and trying new thing so please share your favorite recipes or brands with me!
I hope you all had a lovely Holiday weekend!