Essential Ingredients You Need to Stock a Home Bar

Growing up, everybody had that one uncle with the restaurant-worthy bar. He’d rush over to your dad, slap him on the back and bark, “What can I get ya?” The best part? No matter what the request, “Uncle Bartender” was able to whip it up.

Today it’s just as likely that your aunt, mom or sister is that person boasting a tight menu of key cocktails, wine and a smattering of craft beer (wouldn’t your uncle have loved that!).

Now it’s your turn. The good news: it doesn’t have to cost a fortune.

At Luigi Bormioli, we know entertaining. Here are a few tips to create (or enhance) your home bar.

The Basics

Relax: you don’t have to buy everything at once. Purchasing only to impress will result in a bar stocked with libations you rarely use. Keep in mind one very important fact: you and your better half are the main patrons at your home bar. Grab what you like first. And while you’re at it, pick up a cocktail recipe book.

The Booze

We stand by our advice that you should start with what you like. But what if you only drink beer or wine? We recommend the following for a nice selection:

  • Vodka
  • Gin
  • Tequila
  • Rum
  • Bourbon whiskey
  • Scotch whisky
  • Cognac
  • Red and white wine
  • A mix of craft beers: IPAs, stout, wheat, seasonals and cider—what do you like?


    Most of these have a good shelf life unopened, so we suggest getting smaller bottles and pouring as you go. Opting for the 8- or 12-ounce sodas and juices should save you money in the long run. Hosting a blowout? Go for the big bottles.

    • Cola
    • 7-Up or Sprite
    • Vermouth
    • Tonic water
    • Ginger ale
    • Club soda
    • Tonic water
    • Juices: cranberry, tomato and orange
    • Vermouth
    • Angostura bitters
    • Craft sodas, lemonade, iced tea and bottled water


      Put the pizzazz in your presentation—and add important flavors—with these go-to garnishes. Don’t forget to grab ice for chilling and for using in drinks.

      • Fruit: limes, lemons, oranges and maraschino cherries
      • Cocktail olives and onions
      • Cocktail onions
      • Horseradish
      • Tabasco sauce
      • Sugar
      • Salt
      • Pepper


      Here’s where we shine. We’ve got a glass for every occasion—and for every beverage in your home bar. We know when the moment matters, the glass matters, so we’ve created our stunning made-in-Italy stemware and barware to exacting standards. Peruse our recommendations, and note those made with one or more of the proprietary techniques we’re so proud to offer:

      • SON.hyx to strengthen while keeping the glass brilliant
      • Sparkx for an ultra-clear, totally transparent and very durable glass
      • TITANIUM Reinforced stem to keep it strong and durable.

      Bonus: our glasses are dishwasher safe, lead-free and eco friendly, too.


      • Rocks (short) glasses: sip on our Strauss On the Rocks DOF, strengthened with SON.hyx. This  collection shows off just a bit with an optical effect on the bottom you can spy as you’re tipping back your drink.
      • Highball (or tall) glasses: Our Rossini Beverage does double-duty, adding panache to adult beverages and soft drinks. It’s SON.hyx strengthened and beautiful.
      • Red and white wine glasses: Supremo’s sensual shape is created in conjunction with the prestigious Italian Centro Studi Assaggiatori, international specialists in food and beverage sensory analysis. But it’s not just a pretty face: its strength comes from SON.hyx and TITANIUM Reinforced.
      • Beer glasses: try our timeless and versatile Michelangelo Pilsner. Your beer shines through thanks to Sparkx clarity.
      • Martini glasses: choose our Crescendo, gorgeous and strong with SON.hyx and TITANIUM Reinforced. Like all Luigi Bormioli products made with SON.hyx, it’s  backed by our 25-year guarantee.

      Finishing Touches

      It can’t hurt to stock these handy items:

      • Bar spoon
      • Muddler
      • Jigger
      • Martini shaker and strainer
      • Toothpicks
      • Napkins

      Now crack into that recipe book and get mixing. Cheers!

      At Luigi Bormioli, we take pride in our Italian-crafted, superior quality glassware. Your glasses, created using our proprietary SON.hyx ultra-clear formula, will retain their brilliant and transparent appearance and are backed by our 25-year guarantee that guards against chipping on the rim or foot, as well as discoloration or cloudiness resulting from washing. You will enjoy their beauty, durability and strength for many years to come. We aim to enhance your tabletop lifestyle and entertaining experience with a glass for every occasion. When the moment matters, the glass matters.