How to Stock Your Bar: Getting Started Guide

After a long hard day at work, few things are as satisfying as coming home to a stylish and perfectly stocked bar for a well-earned, relaxing drink. On weekends, your guy friends will envy your set-up and women will quickly see the difference between you and the average dude with nothing more than a few Bud Ice languishing in his fridge. I would go so far as to say that a properly stocked bar is a marker of achievement. It says you’ve graduated into that select group of men who knows how to take care of himself and others, and knows how to do it with a bit a panache.

How to Set Up a Home Bar – Select Home Bar Furniture

The first step is to get the proper bar furniture. What  you select here will come down to how much space you have and what your budget can handle. I absolutely love this Traditional Cherry Finish Bar Unit w/Wine Rack Sink Drawers. 


If space or price happens to constrain you a bit, fear not. A fantastic 2nd choice is this Black Oak Vietti Bar Cabinet with Bottle and Glass Storage. It’s smaller and more affordable, making it perfect for younger men with smaller apartments.


How to Set Up a Home Bar – Select Essential Alcohols

Now that we have selected a great piece of furniture, we get to the fun part – choosing booze! This is one part science, one part art. There are a few essential alcohols for your home bar that you will need to have on hand. However, this is YOUR bar, so you can and should stock it with your favorites as well. Feel free to experiment and have fun building your collection. I’ll leave that to you. But what are the essentials for a home bar? Here’s my recommended list of 7 basics to start with.




Bourbon Whiskey

Rye Whiskey



You can stock all of these for under 200 dollars, or you can drop $200 a bottle easily. It really comes down to how much quality you are willing and able to pay for. The best way to go about this is to write up a list of what you want and set a specific budget. Then head down to a few local liquor stores and ask for some advice. I always manage to find someone who loves their work a lot who’ll consult me and help me find exactly what I need. Grab this book too if you want more advice on choosing specific bottles for your bar.

How to Set Up a Home Bar – Select Cool Accessories

Allright. We have the furniture. We have the alcohol. The final step is to get the right drinking accessories. I file these under 3 categories. 1) Things to Drink. 2) Things to Drink From. 3) Things to Drink By. Let’s take these one-by-one.

  1. Things to Drink – Here’s where we need to think of mixers. To the easiest way to start out is with a a great starter kit. Limited budgets should consider this cocktail variety pack from Skinny Mixes. If you have a bit more money to invest, try this set from Bittermilk.
  2. Things to Drink From – I suppose you can drink a martini from a coffee cup. You can also wear your pajamas to a job interview, but I wouldn’t recommend it. Instead, begin building a collection of drink-ware that you can be proud of. A starter kit like this will get you going. And part of the fun of having your own home bar is adding to your collection over time.71EKQTY44eL._SL1500_
  3. Things to Drink By – This is the final step. Get some cool items to set the atmosphere of your home bar. This last step is highly personal and will come down to the specific ambiance you seek to create. Do want it to feel old-fashioned and traditional? Trendy and modern? Playful or serious? Once you choose your style goal, select individual items that will help you create it. For example, this LED Bar Display is amazing if you often entertain guests after dark.71m4G7R8SiL._SL1500_

I hope today’s post inspires you to start your very own home bar. Enjoy!


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