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Wine and Bar Tools

A bar is only as good as its barware. With such a variety of accessories available — an ice bucket, decanter, coasters and a corkscrew, to name a few — it’s hard to tell which ones you absolutely need, let alone which ones are best. While some everyday kitchen tools will do the trick in a pinch, you’ll still want a good set of bar supplies to keep the liquids flowing. Here’s a handy guide to help you narrow down the perfect wine and bar tools:

What kind of bar supplies do I need to serve up some great cocktails?

Cocktails come with their own host of bar accessories, but a few outrank the others in terms of necessity. Here are a few barware items that should make the top of your shopping list:
• Cocktail shaker: Many cocktails are required to be shaken, not stirred, so a functional shaker is a home bar must-have. Look for a durable design that will hold enough liquid along with your ice cubes. The best styles don’t leak while you’re shaking up your concoction, and are easy to split apart for immediate serving. Steel shakers are usually favored over plastic. Shakers come in three distinct styles: Cobbler, Boston and Parisian. Cobbler shakers feature three distinct pieces and a built-in strainer, while the Boston shaker style is simply a shaking tin and mixing glass. Parisian shakers are made of two pieces similar to the cobbler style, but lack a built-in strainer.
• Jigger: This tool will make it easy for you to pour precise amounts of liquor for your cocktail. Look for a design that has easy-to-read measurement markings, since a difference of even an eighth of an ounce can have a drastic effect on your drink’s flavor. These can come solo or in a set and are usually stainless steel.
• Strainer: This simple but nifty contraption keeps ice, fruit and other particles out of your cocktail glass. If you choose a Parisian- or Boston-style shaker, you’ll want to pair a Hawthorne strainer with it. If you have a cobbler shaker, you should have a built-in strainer to go with.
• Bar spoon: If you do stir your drinks instead of shaking them, this specialty spoon is essential. Its long handle allows you to reach the bottom of even the tallest glass without dipping your fingers in the mixture. Most also feature a twisted shaft that helps it spin your concoction while you stir.

What wine accessories are essential for my home bar?

Whether you’re a sommelier or just a casual enthusiast, your wine bar will thank you for adding these necessary additions:
• Corkscrew: There’s nothing more disappointing than grabbing a bottle and finding you lack a way to open it and enjoy its contents. Make sure you have a wine opener on hand to avoid this catastrophe, or try a wine key, which resembles a Swiss army knife and comes with a foil cutter, corkscrew and lever. Whatever style you choose, look for a quality metal design.
• Decanter: If you’ve been imbibing your vino without aerating it, then you’re in for a pleasant surprise when you expose your vino to oxygen with a wine aerator. This simple process allows alcohol molecules to be released into the air, which then carries the flavors all the way to your nose.
• Wine stopper: This little tool is essential for keeping the unused portion of your wine from going bad. Some more elaborate styles feature a one-way valve that creates a vacuum inside the bottle, therefore lowering the oxygen content inside. Others work by placing a heavier, inert gas like argon above the surface of your wine.
• Wine glass charms: If you’re hosting or have a larger family that enjoys a bottle together, charms can be a lifesaver. Never again will you have to reenact the scene with the Dread Pirate Roberts and the Sicilian as you put your wits to the test trying to figure out whose glass is whose. Inconceivable!

Beer is my beverage, so what bar supplies do I need?

Beer drinkers require fewer accessories than their wine and cocktail counterparts, but there are a few key items you’ll want to have close by as you get ready to enjoy that draft:
• Bottle opener: While there are a few hacks that might pop that bottle cap right off, a good opener is still an essential addition to your home bar. You might even be surprised to learn there are a few different varieties available, including a churchkey, simple opener, speed opener and more.
• Kegerator: Keep your draft beer chilled and ready to be dispensed with this beer keg-refrigerator combo. They even come in a mini size for those smaller, five-liter kegs of beer.
• Growler: These amber-hued vessels allow you to take your beer on the go. While we’re not condoning having a beer as your commute-time beverage, these are perfect for taking your brew to a friend’s house without having to worry about negatively affecting the quality.
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Featured Reviews of Wine and Bar Tools

Cats with Umbrellas Coaster, Set of 4
Wine and Bar Tools
January 8, 2015
Received the coasters in time for Christmas which I was pleased with.: Received the coasters in time for Christmas which I was pleased with. I was surprised that the coasters were of a flexible material (I expected more of a cork material, guess I didn't read info very well). Nonetheless, the recipients of this gift were pleased.
Army Man Bottle Opener
Wine and Bar Tools
July 2, 2018
Coolest little Army man ever!: Looks exactly like the little plastic Army man toy BUT this is larger and has a nice weight and balance. Bought it for the novelty of it but am impressed with the quality! Works a little differently from most bottle openers (see the picture) but works great and has nostalgic appeal, win-win.
Globe Spirits Decanter
Wine and Bar Tools
December 9, 2016
Great Gift: The quality of this product makes it an excellent Christmas gift for the whiskey/spirits & enthusiast on your list. Beautiful & just the right size not to take up too much space on your bar.
Whiskey Stones Gift Set of 8, Reusable Stainless Steel Whiskey Ice Cube
Wine and Bar Tools
November 13, 2017
Conversation Piece: These cubes are very interesting! They are certainly a conversation piece! Although they do not keep the beverage cold for an extended period of time your beverage is not watered down! Great concept! I really like them!
Colt Copper Finish Beverage Tub
Wine and Bar Tools
October 11, 2017
Classy way to serve beverages!: I love the copper color of this beverage tub. It is perfect for Fall! I rated it 4 stars due to the weight I feel comfortable loading. It is best to fill the tub with bottles, cans, and ice in the general area where you plan to serve from. If you load and transport, it is better to carry/support from the bottom, rather than hold on to the handles. Cheers!
Rhia 4-Piece Coaster Set, Clear
Wine and Bar Tools
May 29, 2016
Jazz up any table: These coasters add the prefect amount of sparkle to my table. Although I purchased for the look and not function, the surface is stable for glasses and cups. Arrived sooner than expected. Very happy with this purchase.
Stop Kitty Bottle Stopper
Wine and Bar Tools
December 12, 2016
Happy purchaser: While I can't speak yet of it's function because it's a gift, I can say that it's adorable, well made and fun. I'm really looking forward to giving it to my black cat loving friend! I ordered it mid-day on 12/6 and had it by Friday 12/9...impressive delivery time especially during the holidays. This wasn't my first purchase from houzz, but all have been of good quality and fast shipping so far. I would definitely recommend purchasing from houzz.
Black Agate Coaster, 24K Gold Finish, Set of 4
Wine and Bar Tools
April 26, 2018
Absolutely gorgeous!!!!: These black agate and gold coasters are the most stunning, beautiful thing I have seen in a while. Just looking at them on my table makes me happy. They are MUCH more beautiful in person, more so than even in the pictures if you can imagine. My set has 2 all black, one black with a tiny bit of white-ish and one black with a huge white part. The gold is outstanding, shiny and rich, not just gold but a deep, rich yellow antique almost, really pops. I am going to buy another set and possibly two more. They were even packaged beautifully, in a nice almost JEWELRY box, individually foam wrapped inside. Do not hesitate, buy these coasters! (I was going to add pictures but my pictures don't do them justice, they are so much more gorgeous in person than a picture can show)

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