Stuck At Home? Here’s How To Set Up Your Own Cocktail Bar

It’s actually a lot easier than you’d think.

While being in lockdown is far from ideal, there are little things we can do to make the experience a little more bearable. Among them, consuming a tipple (or two). While alcohol certainly isn’t the answer to life’s problems, it definitely softens the blow of another week stuck at home. 

If you’ve been ordering wine by the bucketload but are starting to miss the taste of a margarita or espresso martini, we feel you. Half the fun of drinking at a bar is sipping back on one delicious cocktail after another, and let’s be honest, sometimes a glass of pinot noir just doesn’t cut it.

Fear not, though. Despite what you probably think, creating a bar experience at home is actually very much in the realm of possibilities. Don’t stress yourself getting bogged down in all the equipment, mixers and other technicalities – you can actually strip it back to just a few basic things. 

How do I know all this? I enlisted the help of the big guns, and by that I mean the brand manager of Twisted Shaker, Jeremy Allan. Unsurprisingly, he knows his stuff when it comes to making a delicious drink at home, so he was the perfect person to turn to for advice. 

First up, what equipment do I need? 

“When it comes to mixing a cocktail at home, the bare basic gear you’ll need is a cocktail shaker (a Boston shaker is our preference), a measuring jigger and ice. Always make sure it’s fresh, good quality ice and not from the back of your freezer crammed next to those frozen meals from who knows when. Every good cocktail is cold (sorry, mulled wine).” 


Boston Cocktail Shaker, $39.95


Viski Copper Canterbury Jigger, $59.95

What spirits, mixers and garnishes are a must-have? 

“It all comes down to what cocktails you like to drink, but a lot of popular recipes have a base spirit of either vodka, gin or tequila; so it’s always handy to have these well-stocked in your home bar.

In terms of mixers; sugar syrup is handy to have as it’s a popular ingredient to balance the drink out. I always like to keep a bit of freshly made lime juice (or premade if you don’t have the time) in the fridge in case the night calls for a couple of margaritas or gimlets. Triple Sec or Orange Liqueur (like Cointreau) and bitters are also practical essentials

Citrus fruit like limes, grapefruit and oranges are also great for adding some zest. You can also buy dehydrated garnishes that are not only aesthetically pleasing, but also mean you don’t have to constantly top-up the fruit bowl.” 


Angostura Bitters, $22


Monin Pure Cane Sugar Syrup, $15.85


Vok Triple Sec, $30


Dehydrated Citrus Wheels, $9.95-$11.95

Okay, so how can I make it feel like a real bar? 

“Having your ingredients prepped always helps to keep the flow of cocktails coming (responsibly, of course). Cut up your garnishes, get your ingredients ready and put your ice in the sink. It’s always helpful to know what you are making beforehand as well. Twisted Shaker can take the stress out here – they are premixed and ready to go, all you need to do is chill them down and pour.

Whoever has the job of mixing the drinks, have them raise the shaker above their shoulders when shaking for a bit of flair. While it’s not entirely necessary to do this, it does make it easier to shake. Remember, if you can’t hear that ice shaking, they’re not working hard enough.”

And finally, crank the tunes, dim the lights and build a bit of atmosphere – you should be shouting your cocktail order like any normal bar!” 

Well, there you have it. Uncomplicated, unfussy the end result? Unbelievable. Lockdown just got a lot more interesting, so go get your tipple on and raise a glass. 

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