Stocking Your Home Bar Part 2: Essential Supplies for the Beer Lover
For those with bars in their homes, stocking them can be a conundrum. You may wonder what type of bar supplies you need, what equipment is necessary, and what types of liquor to carry. You probably have an idea of your preferred entertainment style, in terms alcohol served or themes of entertainment. For instance, you may enjoy serving beer at your poker nights or cracking open a cold brew for game day. Learn more about the important equipment and supplies you need in order to store, pour and serve beer for your guests.
Direct Draw Beer Dispenser. Beer fans know that beer on tap provides an entirely different experience than beer from a bottle. Serious beer drinkers and those who often have kegs of beer available at parties should consider a direct draw beer dispenser, also known as a kegerator. These refrigerated cabinets hold up to four kegs and come with a beer dispensing tower so you can pour tap beer like the pros. » How to Pour the Perfect Draft Beer
Refrigerator. Since you may have guests show up unexpectedly, a refrigeration system of some sort is essential for keeping your bottles and cans cool. This way, they are ready to serve at a moment’s notice. If you have space to fit a small back bar cooler behind your bar, this can be a good option to store a few select brews, or even soda and wine. Those who want to have a wider selection on hand, or wish to keep food cold as well, might want to go for a full-sized home refrigerator.
Bottle opener. You will need this tool when your friends come over after work for a cold bottle of their favorite brew. The ring on the bottle opener provides an easy way to hang it on a hook for easy retrieval.
Cap Catcher. For large groups drinking from bottles, a cap catcher like this works great. Use a wall-mount bottle opener to open your beer bottles in one easy movement, catching the cap before it clutters your floor or bar top
Bar Towels. Never be without a set of bar towels behind your bar. Besides cleaning up minor spills on the bar, you never know when the next Guinness may accidentally spill all over Aunt Milly—or worse—your expensive suede couch.
Cutting board. Although you may not use it as much for beer, a cutting board can come in handy for slicing up garnishes for your beer, such as oranges or lime wedges.
Paring knife. The paring knife is useful when you need to slice up a few lemon wedges to adorn your pint glasses. Having one of these in your home bar is useful so that you do not have to run to the kitchen each time you need one.
An essential item for any beer enthusiast, the beer glass provides a vessel for pouring beer from your keg or from the bottle, if your guests prefer drinking from a glass. There are many kinds of beer glasses available, depending on the type of beer you like to serve. Consider size, shape and style when selecting beer glasses.
Beer Mugs. Beer mugs are a popular choice for the home bar, either with draft or bottled beer. Some guests prefer a frosted glass in the summer time, although many beer purists believe the resulting condensation waters down the beer, changing the taste. Whatever your preference, beer mugs are a great addition to any home bar where beer is the star.
Choosing Your Beer
Choosing the right type of alcohol truly depends on the person, or the guests. When it comes to beer, many home bar enthusiasts like to keep a selection of their favorite bottles or cans on hand. On the other hand, many hosts don’t keep too much beer on hand but rather buy beer when needed for a specific occasion. Depending on your bar, you can buy in kegs, bottles or cans.
- Big name brands. If you entertain a lot, it is a good idea to have a few of the big name brands on hand.
Typically, people recognize the major American breweries like Miller, Coors, and Anheuser-Busch, and know which of these varieties they prefer.
- Microbrews. Another option is to try offering beer from microbreweries—also called craft breweries. Buying from local craft breweries is more environmentally friendly because it does not have to travel hundreds of miles to reach your neighborhood liquor store, but beer from craft breweries around the country can provide more opportunity for discussion if it is something your guests have never tried before.