June 27, 2007

How to Stock a Home Bar for Under $300

We get a lot of questions about what's the best way to stock a home bar, especially for those who aren't willing to shell out hundreds and hundreds of dollars to do so. We're constantly meaning to do some research into the topic, but it appears someone has beaten us to the punch (and done a great job doing it). Jason Wilson at the Washington Post put together a great list with some very good advice and some limitations we can get behind (trying to stick to bottles around $20, for example).

We dedicated $200 to the basic setup: the six bottles every bar needs - whiskey, tequila, rum, vodka, gin and brandy - plus several essential mixers.

But no one drinks the same cocktail season after season. Allowing for that, we decided to dedicate an additional $100 for seasonally appropriate spirits. We purchased bottles with summer in mind.

In the end, we were able to get 15 bottles, plus the two small bottles of bitters, for less than $270, leaving us with $30 of wiggle room to allow for store-to-store price variations. And it put each bottle at an average of less than $16.

So what did our budget buy?

Find out at Mercury News (Update: Originally featured at the Washington Post) [via Topix.net]

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June 18, 2007

Ralph Lauren Leather-and-Crystal Decanter

We're not exactly sure how much decanting affects the taste of a fine whisk(e)y, but we're guessing there's a reason people do it. Of course, if we had a decanter as cool-looking as this Ralph Lauren leather and crystal jobby we found at Uncrate, we'd probably be decanting all over the place even if it didn't have any noticeable benefits at all. It's a bit on the spendy side, coming in at just under $400, but just think - you buy this once and you can pass off the cheapest whiskeys in the world in it, because people will see it coming out of a fancy decanter and just assume that's how it should taste.

via Uncrate

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June 11, 2007

Anatomicals Herbal Hangover Remedy

Some days, you just need a little hangover remedy to push you over the hump toward your next drink. For us, it's generally Tuesdays through Saturdays and we doubly need it on Sundays. We usually go au naturel - we've still got a huge supply of Chasers under our bathroom sink, and we're a bit gun shy after our first experience with them. We're intrigued by the "Bender Mender" from Anatomicals, however - the website says it's a "brand favorite" of Victoria Beckham, and if Posh says it works, who are we to judge?

Anatomicals [via acquire]

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June 8, 2007

Liquid Lunch Mobile Martini Bar For Two

Summer is a time for drinking on the go, and we've always been suckers for the old portable bar. One minute, it's a nondescript suitcase-looking thing; the next, it's a full blown party. The Liquid Lunch martini bar includes everything you need to whip up the martini of your dreams in any location, including 2 glasses, 2 olive picks, jigger and shaker.

Liquid Lunch For 2 By Godinger [via acquire]

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May 31, 2007

Margaritaville Tub-N-Tap Party Cooler


There are two sides to every party - the folks who want to have some beers, and the folks who want to have some something else, whether it be sangria, cocktails, whatever. In the past, never the two would meet, with the beer drinkers congregated around the cooler and the others around the punchbowl or pitcher. The brilliant folks at Margaritaville have discovered a brilliant way to bring unity to your party by creating the Tub-N-Tap Party Cooler.

What is this monument of genius, you ask? It offers a 4 liter insulated bin, accessible by tap, for your favorite bevvy on the bottom; on top is a tray that will hold 40 beers and copious ice. We love it when a plan comes together.

Margaritaville Tub-N-Tap Party Cooler[via Uncrate]

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May 10, 2007

Hamilton Beach Manual Juicer

The juicer is a crucial, but often overlooked element of the proper home bar. With so many delicious cocktails calling for freshly-squeezed juice, you don't want to skimp and get one of those little "bowl with a juicer in it" things, so the first impulse is often to buy one of those fancy-schmancy electric juicers the kids are always talking about (those kids and their electricity). Here's one thing you're forgetting if you do that, however - how are you going to make juice if the power goes out? Let's face it, power outages are the best times to drink because, well...there's nothing else to do.

That's where this Hamilton Beach manual juicer comes in. You're not married to the concept of electricity because of the sweet lever action, and you're also not hunched over doing the mash and twist for two hours with a bag of limes. Seems like the best of all worlds to us.

Amazon - Hamilton Beach Commercial 932 Manual Juicer

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April 16, 2007

Steel 11-Piece Barware Set

We often get questions from people wondering about what's the best cocktail set for someone looking to flesh out their home bar. When we get that question, our first question is to ask what they already have. Do you have an ice bucket and tongs? Do you have any bar spoons or shakers? How about good sharp fruit knives and a cutting board?

This set we just found at Amazonis for the person who, in answer to each of those questions, says "no." Seems like a nice, full set for someone who's been told they can't raid the kitchen for bar utensils anymore, plus it's made by OXO and we've always had good experiences getting solid, inexpensive gear from them.

Amazon - OXO Steel 11-Piece Barware Set

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February 2, 2007

Kronik Chill Freezer Cup Review

Kronik ChillDual-Layered Cups with Freezer Gel
Price: $23.99 for a case of 24

We have to admit when we first heard about Kronik Chill we weren't quite sold. Don't get us wrong, we thought it was a cool idea, but after all the promises they make on their website about The Test, we still weren't quite feeling it. After all, Kronik Chill is just a glorified styrofoam cup, right?

And yes, we realize styrofoam is a miracle substance.In fact, it's what kept your McDLT hot and cool, respectively.
We like that McDLT analogy quite a bit, actually. You want your hand to be like the burger part - it should stay warm. And you want your drink to be like the lettuce and tomato part - it should stay frosty cool. So does it work?

ArrowContinue reading: "Kronik Chill Freezer Cup Review"

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January 26, 2007

Bodum Double Wall Sake Glasses

bodum-sake.jpgThis is probably a post we should send over to our compatriots at Cheap Fun Wines, but we like Bodum glasses a lot and hey - we found it. Let 'em link to us. We saw these double walled Bodum sake glasses over at Josh Spear's site and we instantly developed a little crush. Whether you drink your sake hot or cold, the double wall will help keep it at the temperature you like, and they just look damned cool.

We found them over in a set of six at Amazonfor about $25; Josh found they're also available at Kitchen Universe for a couple bucks cheaper.

Amazon - Bodum Double Wall Sake Glasses Set of 6[via Josh Spear]

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January 22, 2007

Kangaroo Scrotum Bottle Opener

Scrotum bottle openerThat's a subject line we never thought we'd have to write, and if we can possibly avoid using "scrotum" and "opener" together in a sentence again we'll be happy. But if you have a predilection for marsupial jumbly parts in conjunction with opening your beer, you're in luck. Actually, we'd completely think this was a sick joke if there wasn't an order form alongside it.

The Kangaroo Scrotum Bottle Opener comes in a variety of colours, mostly shades of grey, brown and white and is Close up of Kangaroo Scrotum presented tastefully; gift boxed, as are all products in our Gifts Of Distinction range.

Have you got a mate that has everything? I bet he hasn't got a kangaroo scrotum bottle opener... and I bet it's a present he won't forget for a long long time!

Univenter.com - Kangaroo Scrotum Bottle Opener

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