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Turn a Buffet or Desk Into a Cocktail Bar

Expecting guests for a cocktail party but you don't have a dedicated bar? No worries: You can quickly turn a buffet, server or desk into a cocktail bar with our expert stocking and arranging ideas.
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Consider Height

One of the most important details in setting up a cocktail bar is proper serving height. Standard counter height — 36 inches from the floor — is the right height to keep in mind when selecting a piece of furniture to use.

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Plenty of Serving Space

Selecting a piece of furniture with enough space for stocking spirits, glassware, mixers, garnishes and decanters is also key.

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Stock the Good Stuff

A well-rounded liquor selection makes it easy for guests to mix up their favorite drink. Spend wisely by stocking only the most popular spirits rather than specialties which may only cater to a few guests. An excellent variety includes: rum, whiskey, tequila, bourbon, vodka, gin, red wine, white wine and champagne.

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Glassware Setup

Stocking enough glasses to serve your guests can take up a lot of space. To conserve space, arrange glasses front to back by height: tall wineglasses in the back, martini glasses in the middle and rocks glasses in front. Bonus: Placing tall wineglasses at the back also prevents breakage.

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