Stock Your Home Bar for a Holiday Party

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 26,452
    Joe Trujillo of the Hospitality Training Institute discusses how to set up your home bar for a standard holiday party.

    Joe Trujillo: Hello, I am Joe Trujillo of the Hospitality Training Institute. Today I am going to show you how to set up your home bar for a standard holiday party. I am going to cover your simple alcohols and your basic mixtures. Then I am going to show you standard rocks drinks followed by your highball drinks. I am going to show you some specialty drinks and how to make them. Finally, I am going to give you some basic tips on how to be a good bar tender at your holiday party. The materials you will need to do this are the following, your alcoholic beverages and mixers which I will be going into greater specifics later on. Depending on your general theme for the party, your glass will may get exotic or may be simplistic but there are three main glasses that you will always need to have on hand, your highball glass, your red wine glass, and your rocks glass.

    The highball glass is a tall cylindrical glass, it can hold your beer, it can hold your mixed cocktails, it could be for your regular juices and sodas. Next is your wine glass. The one I am holding is a red wine glass. It's a short and stocky glass which is typically reserved only for red wine but I also recommend picking up a white wine glass which is a little more cylindrical and taller than your red wine. Red wine is a little more stocky as it allows the wine itself to breathe and a lot of the aromas and flavors to be brought out. Your rocks glass comes by several different names. You may have heard referred it as a pseudo glass, a bucket, or as a lowball. All it is is your short and stocky glass that holds anywhere between 2 ounces up to 6 ounces of a liquid.

    You will need a mixer or martini shaker, it just seems to have a top, strainer, and a vessel. If you can't find a martini shaker, you can always go with the standard 12-14 ounce glass and a mixing tin. These are essentially the same thing as your standard martini shaker, except they hold more and don't have the fancy top.

    Following that, I recommend picking up a strainer. It's a simple device which allows an office bar tenders to pour drink from the mixing tin or glass into the pseudo glass or short glass without spilling the content. Next, you will need your standard bottle opener. You will need your wine opener. You will also need some pores. You can a get a pack for 12 for less than $5 in most stores. I would highly recommend them as they make your poring a lot easier and controlled. You will also need some straws, napkins, a cutting board, and a knife. If you are new at bar tending, I also recommend picking up a drink recipe book which can be found at any bookstore or online. Next is your simple ice cube and following regarding ice, there are several things to be aware of. The general rule of thumb is to have twice the amount then you actually plan for. Although, that it seems like a large amount of ice when your bag is about this size, and it's important to be aware of what you are going to be using that ice for. For instance, a party of ten, I would recommend probably picking up of about 20 of these bags. Again, seems like a lot but when you actually think about it, you have, I will say 30 some odd beers. You need to ice those beers down in your cooler. It's probably going to require at least five to seven bags of ice, just the ices beers down by themselves.

    In addition to that, think about the guest and the amount of drinks that they are going to be consume. Each one of these drinks needs to be filled with ice to the brim. That's not taking into account as well using your ice to make the actual martini in your martini shaker, or any other type of mixing mechanism, frozen drinks, or anything similar, or of that nature.

    Some safety tips to be aware of regarding alcohol. One, always be aware of how much your guests are drinking; and two, make sure your guests are having an established means of getting home safely. That being said, a little about myself. I have been bar tending for the past eight years, from restaurants, to night clubs, to large scale venues. I am also the primary instructor of the Hospitality Training Institute in Alexandria, Virginia.

    Let's get started, and show you how to set up your home bar for a holiday party.