8 Unique Gifts for a Stunning Home Bar

8 Unique Gifts for a Stunning Home Bar

Your cocktail-obsessed friend already has the basics. Spice up their setup with these unique items.

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Bar glassware in various colors
Photo: Rodion Kutsaev (Shutterstock)

If there’s one cocktail that defined 2022, it just might be the negroni sbagliato (with Prosecco in it). When a video of Emma D’Arcy went viral for a particularly sultry recitation of their favorite drink, it shifted the very culture of cocktails. The negroni sbagliato is underrated, elegant, and simple, yet full of personality. And if you or someone in your life wants that same spirit (pun intended) reflected in a home bar, you have to look for gifts beyond the basics. The following items will ensure your home cocktail setup is just as stunning (ooo, stunnin’!) as the cocktail itself.

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Absinthe fountain

Absinthe fountain

Absinthe: How to serve it with an Absinthe Fountain

Absinthe probably isn’t top of mind when you think of homemade cocktails, but that’s probably because most home bars don’t have the proper vessel to serve it. An absinthe fountain not only helps properly serve up a glass of the anise-flavored spirit, but also serves as a gorgeous centerpiece to your cocktail area.

Alandia sells a range of fountains and absinthe serving sets priced between $69.90 and $499.90, and there’s a great collection of vintage fountains on Etsy if you’re looking for a piece of history. This isn’t the cheapest gift on the list, but if you’re willing to pay the price it could be perfect for your bartender friend who has it all.

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Bar lamps and signs

Bar lamps and signs

Evoke the nostalgia of bar days gone by with vintage beer lamps and signs (if you can hang a Pizza Hut lamp in your home, why not beer?). Ebay is a natural first stop for this hunt, where you can pick up items like this vintage Hamms Pabst Schlitz Coors hanging lamp ($50) or this Molson’s Canadian Beer sign (starting bid at $.99). For a more curated list of what’s on offer, check out Collector’s Weekly watch page.

If you’re going for a more modern feel, Amazon offers a range of neon bar signs, whether you want to let people know it’s 5:00 somewhere ($59), initiate a cheers ($31.90), or simply point out that this is in fact a bar ($24.99), there’s a sign for you.

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Colorful glassware

Colorful glassware

Brighten up any bar with some tinted glassware. Anthropologie has a great drinkware collection with a range of styles and colors for any kind of cocktail. Some standouts are the colored glass bee tumblers ($16) and wine glasses ($18), the iridescent highball glasses ($40 for a set of 4), and the Ramona coupe glasses ($56 for a set of 4).

For more affordable options, check out Crate and Barrel’s Alma highball and double old fashioned glasses ($7.95-$9.95 each) or Billie double old fashioned glasses (currently on clearance for $4.97 each). If you’re willing to spend big for a unique work of art you can drink from, try Coming Soon’s Rialto collection ($75 for a pair of coupe glasses, $65 for a pair of old fashioned glasses).

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Creative ice cube trays

Creative ice cube trays

We know that sphere ice makes cocktails better because of its slow dilution. The same is true of spherical ice covered in designs to easily turn your cocktails themselves into a works of art. W&P offers an array of ice trays that make gem-like cubes like the petal cocktail ice tray ($18.75), the ripple cocktail ice mold ($11.25), and the crystal cocktail ice tray ($18.75).

If you’re looking for something more specific, Amazon offers trays that can turn your ice into roses ($7.99), the United States of America ($12.29), and dachshunds ($9.99).

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Make-your-own-booze kits

Make-your-own-booze kits

WE MAKE DANGEROUSLY GREAT GIN W/THE “DO YOUR GIN” KIT!!

There’s nothing more specialty than a bartender serving liquor they made themselves. Uncommon Goods sells kits that allow you to make your own whiskey or gin ($60 for each kit) from the comfort of your home. If you’d rather just spruce up a spirit that you already love, pick up an infusion kit ($25), which comes in five flavors: Navel Gazer Spiced Orange, Blue Sunday Blueberry Lavender, Parrot Head Strawberry Jalapeno, Island Time Spicy Pineapple, and Rose Ceremony Raspberry Rose.

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Personalized coasters

Personalized coasters

How It’s Made: Drink Coasters

Don’t let those homemade drinks leave rings on your coffee table. Coasters are one of those cheap and easy gifts that everyone needs but people rarely buy for themselves—and personalizing the coasters just adds that special extra touch. At the pricier end, Home and Harmony sells a set of coasters that double as picture frames ($33.99) so you can spill on all your favorite memories (don’t worry, the photos are protected by glass).

Etsy features hundreds of options for customized coasters from independent makers, ranging from personalized printed heavyweight cardboard coasters ($11 for 6, $15 for 12) to engraved slate coasters ($4.99 each).

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Recipes on display

Recipes on display

Four Seasons Cocktail Shaker-BA101

Forget any sort of cocktail recipe book—there are ways to incorporate the ingredients and instructions for your favorite drinks into the design of the bar itself. Kikkerland sells the four seasons cocktail shaker ($25), which features the recipes for eight seasonal cocktails all around the shaker, and bartending glasses ($25 for 4), which show you exactly how far to pour each ingredient into the glass for drinks like a Bloody Mary, a salty dog, and a mojito.

If you want to turn creating a cocktail into a game, these cocktail cards from Etsy ($13.63) make up a whole deck of playing cards, each with a different cocktail recipe—just pick a card and mix away. Or if you want even more freedom to be creative, try Mover and Shaker’s dealer’s dice ($15). Each of the three dice in the set features a different element of a cocktail to put together: a spirit, a taste or technique, and a flavor profile.

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Specialty bitters, syrups, and mixers

Specialty bitters, syrups, and mixers

Amp up your homemade cocktails with specialty and small-batch syrups, bitters, and mixers. 18.21 Bitters sells a range of unique syrups ($22.99), shrubs ($18-$24.99), tonic waters ($10.99), and, of course, bitters in flavors like Japanese chili and lime, tart cherry and saffron, and grapefruit lavender ($12-$20.99).

Hella Cocktail Co. also offers some unique bitters in flavors like Mexican chocolate and smoked chili ($21.99) alongside canned bitter and soda combinations ($39.95 for a 12-pack) and pre-made mixes for margaritas, Bloody Marys, Moscow mules, and old fashioneds ($42.95 for a 3-pack).

And if you also just so happen to love pickles with your beverages, you can’t go wrong with Gordy’s Fine Brine ($18 for a 4-pack), a canned and chilled pickle brine for cocktails.

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