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Mini Bar on a Budget

As a firm believer that an open bar is second only to a free buffet, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with the extra space nestled in the built-in bookshelf + cabinet area in my new living room. Knowing I didn’t have the cash for a Mad Men-esque minibar nor the desire for a full out bar, I used my space to its fullest.

Yes, it’s important to have a fully stocked bar, but in a limited space, it’s more important to have spirits that make you smile too. My mini-bar picks:

  • Jack Daniel Tennessee Honey
  • Platte Valley Fireshine, made locally in Weston, MO at McCormick Distillery
  • Amigoni Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, made locally in Kansas City, MO
  • Johnny Walker Black Scotch

I don’t think it’s necessary to stock your bar with all of the “essentials”, but only what’s essential to you. I opted for whiskey and scotch, in part because I toured the Jack Daniel distillery while on vacation in Tennessee. My (gracefully aging) bottle of Johnny Walker Black was given to me by a friend when I graduated from graduate school.

I also had a couple local wines from Amigoni winery that are special to me, from the time my coworkers and I had a wine blending contest. In addition to the wines, I had a little wine glass holder that my dad made me in his woodworking shop (he clearly gets me..)

My one recommendation is to get a rail mat, especially if there’s a risk that someone small (read: a cat that likes to push breakable thing off shelves…) knocking over your wares. My bar mat is also directly from the Jack Daniel store in Lynchburg, TN along with my shot glass rack made from the aging barrels. Have I mentioned my love of whiskey? I wasn’t 100% sure if that was clear yet.

In the end, I’m happy with the way my mini-bar turned out! What would you have in your mini-bar?

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