Your bar cart is a centerpiece of holiday entertaining. Here's how to dress it up for the Occasion.
When entertaining for the holidays, the bar cart is a great location to add a little sparkle and shine. Bar carts are all the rage for chic décor, and with good reason. Any console table in your house—or a small bookcase topped with a tray—can serve as a pop-up bar when entertaining. Even if you don't drink, you might like to set up a pop-up bar for your guests. Here are a few tips for making your bar cart shine.
A decorative cocktail book can help inspire your color choices and add a little interest, as can an ornament or small Christmas toys. With colors and shapes in every variety, the bottles and labels themselves provide great inspiration to get you started.
Keep it Simple | Either put out one bottle each of the very basics—vodka, gin and whiskey with a few mixers and garnishes. Or focus in on a theme such as a gin or bourbon bar with all the fun accompaniments that go with your theme. You can still have the other obligatory offerings off to the side or on the bottom of the cart.
Bourbon Bar | Splurge on a few good bottles. Use big ice cubes in your bucket, and be selective in your glass choice. Match makes the perfect Classic Double Old Fashioned glass with a simple band of pewter around the bottom. Add an assortment of small-batch bitters (try chocolate, orange, cherry and black walnut) and vermouths—you can't go wrong with Carpano Antic Formula. Carve some swirls and swashes of orange peel and splurge on some good cherries, such as Luxardo, with little tongs. Add a small dish of decadent chocolates for nibbling—the perfect flavor pairing with bourbon.
Vodka Bar | Choose some décor accessories that play up a white Christmas theme in honor of Vodka's Russian birthplace. A tabletop tree of white feathers transports you to a winter wonderland, and the tree shape is the perfect complement to the bottles. Add Fever Tree club soda, Jack Rudy tonic assortment, dry vermouths, Kahlua, Pomegranate and St. Germaine liqueurs and a few festive juices like pomegranate, blood orange and cranberry. Bring out the elegant martini glasses and cut-crystal high-ball gasses. Create garnish displays with rosemary springs, citrus twists, blood orange wheels and martini olives. Skewer some cubes of hard cheese on toothpicks for nibbling.
Gin Bar | Accent with few evergreen sprigs to visually bring out the flavor of this piney spirit. For garnish, use orange slices, juniper berries and other botanicals, as well as olives and lemon twists. Choose high-end tonics like Fever Tree and Jack Rudy. Add sweet vermouth and Campari for the negroni lovers—and have large ice cubes and whiskey glasses on hand. Choose large stemless wine goblets for the gin-tonic lovers, and martini glasses for the most classic of the cocktails. For nibbles, pay homage to the gin-tonic and negroni country of Spain, and add some little charcuterie cubes on toothpicks.
Cue to the Lights | All the glass and colorful spirits are just begging for an ambient glow. Candles or battery operated tiny white string lights woven judiciously through your scene will add the enchantment you are looking for.
Remember the ice, tongs, shakers, garnishes, stylish bar implements, nibbles, and cocktail napkins to complete the experience!
Stop into Acorns boutique on South 4th to stock on up everything you need to make your holiday bar cart the star of the occasion, including Match Old Fashioned glasses and other glassware, Jack Rudy tonics, bar implements as well as whimsical holiday accents and fun gift ideas.