When it comes to setting up a home bar for the holidays -be it for parties, dinners or in expectation of unexpected guests- the most important ingredient is you. Buy things you generally like and know how to prepare and every occasion will be merry and guests will think you’re bright. Love nebbiolo? Don’t buy zinfandel. Love Manhattans? That’s whiskey, vermouth and bitters. Negronis? That’s gin, vermouth, Campari. Whatever your favorite, build your bar with its base.
The second most important ingredient in your home bar is not-too-many ingredients. Try this: one red, one white, one sparkling, one brown, one clear, one vermouth, one fun like amaro or Campari (festive and bittersweet, like the season) and one dessert-y. That will satisfy everyone. Plus club soda, tonic, a citrus fruit, Angostura Bitters, and fancy soda (Spindrift is consistent across the line). That’ll suit drinkers and non-drinkers. Don’t forget ice. And beer. Pull out the beach cooler.
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