Once you’ve finished polishing the shelves of your beautifully appointed new home bar, the next task you’ll be eager to complete is to fill them with a stylish selection of spirits that are sure to impress your first batch of guests. Building up an extensive collection that includes less familiar liqueurs such as green chartreuse, can take time so concentrate on a basic core of versatile favourites that van be enjoyed on their own or as part of a cocktail.


The first bottle that should take pride of place is brandy, a traditional warming classic that is guaranteed to add a touch of luxurious good taste to your hand-crafted new bar, particularly if you choose one of the more expensive cognacs. Vodka might not have any flavour, but it should have a mellow, smooth tone to it. As a versatile basic ingredient in many cocktails such as an Espresso Martini, you’ll probably need a larger sized bottle. Traditional malt whisky is a favourite with connoisseurs who enjoy identifying the distinctive blends that recall the aromas of the peat and heather of the Scottish glens and have been aged in oak casks for several years. Don’t forget a large bottle of gin. Distilled from juniper berries, it is the mainstay of the ever popular gin and tonic, with the best blends having a hint of citrus.


At some point you are sure to want to mix a bowl of the classic Caribbean Rum Punch that uses both light and dark blends that are made from deliciously sweet molasses. To capture the exotic, spicy flavours of the West Indies, add equal measures of lime, orange and pineapple fruit juices and sprinkle over with some grated nutmeg. Garnish with a few pineapple rings and serve with lots of ice. Tequila is the main ingredient in the fiery Mexican Margarita cocktail. Use a good quality blanco or silver blend and mix with fresh lime and orange juice, remembering to add a generous dash of black pepper for an authentic touch.


Contemporary bars usually include an inbuilt refrigerator for the storage of fresh fruit juices, cherries, slices of lemon and a regular supply of ice cubes. Your shelves will need a selection of glasses and a few environmentally friendly paper straws. To complement your array of spirits, include some wine but avoid the usual supermarket plonk and look out for some unusual speciality home brewed beers with odd names. The spirits you choose should reflect the unique characteristics of your personality, particularly if your beautiful new home bar has been exclusively designed and installed by Dawnvale who are experts at creating all types of bespoke projects.

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