Constructing a house bar generally is a little bit of an endeavor. After buying all the obligatory instruments, correct glassware, and bottles of liquor, issues can, effectively, begin to really feel crowded. And naturally, the deeper one will get into the world of spirits and mixology, the extra it turns into clear that amassing bottles is a Sisyphean activity. For organizing cocktail muddle, a bar cart is an apparent resolution.

Bar carts can serve a mess of functions. Their major operate is to assist residence bartenders preserve their provides and instruments stowed and arranged. However in addition they serve an aesthetic objective as a chunk of cell residence decor and a strategy to show glassware and bottles. Many residence mixologists even use the highest shelf of their carts as a workspace to whip up cocktails. In fact, bar carts generally is a little bit of an funding, so whether or not you simply want a trendy strategy to show your bottles or a transportable bar prime, you wish to make the precise selection when purchasing. To search out the perfect bar carts, we talked to a couple bar business insiders for his or her suggestions.

The Standards: What to Search for in a Bar Cart

Critical Eats / Grace Kelly

Selecting a bar cart that’s best for you presents a novel problem. Performance is of course the primary concern, nevertheless it’s additionally a chunk of furnishings, so aesthetics are value contemplating, too. There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all bar cart available on the market. “A very powerful factor is discovering a bar cart that fills your model and your wants,” says Noel Savoy, lead bartender at Spring Place in Beverly Hills. “Consider your assortment and what you’d prefer to show earlier than shopping for a bar cart.” There are, nevertheless, specific design nuances that have an effect on how helpful a bar cart is.

  • Dimension: When choosing a cart, make certain it will likely be capable of adequately maintain your required quantity of bottles, bar instruments, and glassware. And you must plan for some development. “By no means go for a small cart. You’d be shocked how rapidly they refill and start to look cluttered,” says Ryan Bailey, companion at Kato in Los Angeles. “The proper dimension ought to be capable of maintain eight to 10 bottles, no less than 4 to 6 glasses, an ice bucket, and all of your barware.”
  • Bar prime: Past storage, bar carts are sometimes used as a transportable bar prime to combine drinks when friends go to. When choosing a cart, be sure that the highest shelf has sufficient house to adequately maintain a couple of bottles, and the mandatory bar instruments and offer you sufficient house to shake a daiquiri or fire up a martini.
  • Prioritize mobility: Mobility is an often-overlooked, however essential operate in bar carts. Carts with wheels make it so residence bartenders can simply transfer the cart to wherever friends have to be entertained. When choosing a cart, go for giant, sturdy wheels. Keep away from small, flimsy wheels if potential. “They’ll break and a non-moveable cart is means much less purposeful,” Bailey says.
  • Type: In the end design aesthetics are a matter of private style, however our consultants suggest a modern minimal design that prioritizes the bottles on show. “I want bar carts with easy traces in order that the gadgets in your cart can shine,” Savoy says. With distillers producing nice liquors packaged in attractive bottles that actually stand out, modern, easy bar carts are inviting.”

Bar Cart Suggestions

Critical Eats / Grace Kelly

Purchasing for bar carts can get a bit overwhelming. There are lots of choices starting from easy and reasonably priced to bespoke and design-focused and simply as many distributors that promote them. To assist us navigate the world of bar carts, we requested our bartending consultants (in addition to a few Critical Eats staffers) for his or her favorites. Right here’s what they suggest.

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The Finest General Bar Cart

Pottery Barn Hugo Metal Bar Cart

Pottery Barn

The Hugo’s angular steel body offers a modern-looking twist on the standard bar cart. The Hugo Metallic Bar Cart from Pottery Barn is extremely purposeful. It has three cabinets, so there’s loads of house in your assortment of bottles, glassware, and equipment. This cart is tremendous modern and may go along with nearly any sort of residence decor and works effectively for many who like to change up their inside design frequently.

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 38 x 29 x 17 inches
  • Supplies: Metal, glass
  • Cabinets: 3

The Finest Mid-Centruy Bar Cart

West Elm Mid-Century Bar Cart

West Elm

“I’ve had this bar cart for years and have been immensely happy with it,” says senior commerce editor Riddley Gemperlein-Schirm. “It has two huge, spacious cabinets (actually, I’ve by no means run out of room), wheels, a deal with, and an total pleasing look to it that matches my residence’s decor. With somewhat wooden cleaner, the bar cart nonetheless seems to be nearly as good as new.”

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 32.4 x 19.9 x 32 inches
  • Supplies: Wooden, brass
  • Cabinets: 2

Critical Eats / Riddley Gemperlein-Schirm

Honey-Can-Do 2 Tier Bar Cart


Bar carts can get a bit dear. Fortunately there are nonetheless fashionable and purposeful choices on the extra reasonably priced aspect of the spectrum. This bar cart from Honey-Can-Do has an angular steel body and two fake marble cabinets that evoke a enjoyable prohibition-era, Artwork Deco sensibility. It has a barely smaller profile than lots of our different suggestions, however at slightly below $100, it’s probably the greatest offers on the market.

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 34 x 24 x 15.9 inches
  • Supplies: Metallic, fake marble
  • Cabinets: 2

The Finest Bar Cart for Highlighting Your Bottle Assortment

Terrace Bar Cart (28")

west elm

This bar cart from West Elm brings somewhat additional glamor with mirrored surfaces and gold railings nevertheless it nonetheless maintains a easy silhouette. “This could deliver somewhat additional sparkle whereas drawing somewhat additional consideration to your assortment,” says Savoy. “It displays mild in an attractive means when you’re simply pouring your self a glass of bourbon or entertaining a gaggle.”

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 31.75 x 27.8 x 14 inches
  • Supplies: Metallic, mirrored glass
  • Cabinets: 2

The Finest Bar Cart-Fridge Combo

Rocco The Super Smart Fridge


“It is a newer addition to my house, nevertheless it’s rapidly grow to be certainly one of my favourite issues I personal,” Riddley says. “It has a flat prime and comes with a tray for storing some bottles on prime and 6 cabinets for stashing drinks of all kinds. I preserve bottled cocktails, seltzers, and wine in there. There are additionally two temperature zones (it may be set wherever from 37ºF to 64º F and the fridge is available in three refined, fairly hues.”

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 34.5 x 24 x 16 inches
  • Supplies: Metal, glass
  • Cabinets: 6

Critical Eats / Riddley Gemperlein-Schirm

The Finest Bar Cart for Storing Bottles

Rosario Bar Cart

All Trendy

The Rosario bar cart from All Trendy has a minimal, trendy design with rounded edges and durable steel building. “I like the form of this All Trendy bar cart since most liquor bottles are spherical,” says Savoy. “It performs up the curves and enhances them so effectively.” It additionally has three cabinets for additional storage and at $196 it gained’t break the financial institution.

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 34.5 x 30 x 17 inches
  • Supplies: Metallic, glass
  • Cabinets: 3

The Finest Multipurpose Bar Cart

ikea rskog utility cart


“I’ve had this IKEA bar cart/do-it-all-cart for six years, and it’s served its objective effectively. Not solely it’s sturdy and sensible (you’ll be able to increase and decrease the cabinets to accommodate taller bottles), nevertheless it additionally has wheels, making it straightforward to roll over to your friends for tableside cocktail service (I’m being severe!),” says affiliate commerce editor Grace Kelly. “Plus, it is available in three colours (black, white, and gold) and has a timeless, clear aesthetic. To not point out it’s solely $40, so when you’re nonetheless deciding on a elaborate bar cart to splurge on however want one thing to make do with within the meantime, this one is for you.”

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 13.75 x 17.75 x 30.75 inches
  • Supplies: Metal
  • Cabinets: 3

Critical Eats / Grace Kelly

The Finest Bar Cart for These Into House Decor

Earl Bar Cart


Designed by a husband and spouse workforce based mostly out of Los Angeles, the Earl bar cart is customizable with a number of hand-cut finishes and steel particulars. “I like their cart as a result of it is stable wooden with hand-cut joinery,” Bailey says. “The craftsmanship could be very noticeable with every element.” It’s additionally giant sufficient for making cocktails and exhibiting off your favourite bottles. From a house decor perspective, it additionally works with a number of kinds of furnishings. 

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 30 x 36 x 16 inches
  • Supplies: Wooden, glass, steel
  • Cabinets: 2

The Finest Bar Cart with Added Storage House

Timothy Oulton Empire Bar Cart

Timothy Oulton

If most storage is what you’re on the lookout for, the Empire Bar Cart has you coated. The additional shelving (there are 4) retains the whole lot organized and clear. “It’s fairly giant, however excellent for many who have a bit extra of a liquor assortment,” Bailey says. It even has a dangling rack for glassware on the decrease degree for additional storage.

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 36” H x 31”W x 17”D
  • Supplies: Chrome steel
  • Cabinets: 4

The Finest Tremendous-Splurge Bar Cart

Klein Agency Bar Cart

Klein Company

For many who are out there for a high-end bar cart with impeccable design, look no additional. Made out of metal, this bar cart from Klein is the perfect of each worlds. It’s sturdy and well-built with attractive leather-based and milled wooden. “This cart was initially designed to be in Auburn, a restaurant in Los Angeles, that gained the James Beard award for finest restaurant design,” says Bailey. Its timeless design ought to give it the pliability to suit properly into most properties.

Key Specs

  • Dimensions: 38 x 37 x 20 inches
  • Supplies: Customizable steel, wooden, leather-based
  • Cabinets: 4


Critical Eats / Grace Kelly

How do you set up a bar cart? 

The way you select to prepare your bar cart might be decided by how you propose to make use of it. In case you intend to make use of your cart as a floor to make drinks, make certain to maintain the highest shelf principally away from bottles, glassware, and barware. That means you’ll have sufficient house for the mandatory bottles and glassware to organize garnishes and stir or shake a cocktail. For the remainder of the cart, it’s finest to assign a devoted house for spirits, liqueurs, glasses, and bar instruments.

The place can you purchase a bar cart? 

Bar carts are available for on-line buy in addition to in lots of shops that promote residence items, kitchenware, and furnishings. Contemplating {that a} bar cart wants to suit your wants each in kind and performance, it is perhaps finest to buy round in particular person to ensure the cart you select matches the house meant for it.

What are the must-have liquors for a bar cart?

In the end, the selection of bottles that wind up in your bar cart is as much as you. If the objective is to entertain and blend up a handful of cocktails, it’s essential to maintain a bottle of every main class of spirit stocked. place to begin is to have one bottle every of gin, vodka, tequila, scotch whisky, bourbon whiskey, an unaged rum, and a barrel-aged rum. Many cocktail recipes name for liqueurs as effectively, so stocking generally used ones like Campari, Chartreuse, Aperol, and an orange liqueur like Grand Marnier or Cointreau will dramatically improve the variety of cocktails you’ll be able to combine up.

Why We’re the Specialists

  • Dylan Ettinger is a contract author who focuses on espresso and drinks protection. 
  • For this story, he spoke to Noel Savoy (lead bartender at Spring Place in Beverly Hills) and Ryan Bailey (companion at Kato in Los Angeles).

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