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Summer is about to improve our time outdoors. And you know what that means: outdoor drinks. And yes sure, you probably have a few bars and restaurants nearby that will gladly serve you drinks on your patio, for a price. But why not cut back on the expense of enjoying your drink? outdoor (and worry about parking or transportation) setting up your own beer garden? Do you want to take advantage of the summer? Use this guide to set up an outdoor bar that you can enjoy from the comfort of your home.
Find your place
First things first, you must choose a place for your bar. Ideally, it should be somewhere where there is both sun and shade. That could mean adding an umbrella or two, or it could mean placing your bar under a tree, canopy, or pergola. You want to have options to keep drinks in the shade, but be able to enjoy the warmth of the sun if you want.
Next, find a level ground. Spilled drinks. It is important to have a flat place to install the bar to keep things as stable as possible.
Store your outdoor bar
Now, let’s get into the fun stuff! Your outdoor bar setup can transform your outdoor space, give you extra space for entertaining, and help you get in some extra vitamin D and fresh air during the warm months. But you’ll only use it if you have what it takes to make yourself a drink quickly and easily. Here’s what you need to gather for a well-stocked bar.
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First, you will need a place to put everything. You can buy a weatherproof bar (like these Wayfair options) if you really want to set yourself up for success, but a simple serving cart can do the trick. Ultimately you just want a place where you can put a few bottles and jars without anything falling out.
Weather-safe storage space
With that said, you need to consider where you will put everything when you are not using your outdoor bar. And sure, you could get it all out from the inside, but you’re much more likely to use your bar on a regular basis if it’s easy. A small, weather-resistant cabinet might be all you need to keep fragile or spillable items protected when your bar is not in use.
Nobody wants a warm drink. Make sure you have a place where you can keep things cold and where you can have ice. It could be a mini fridge, a cooler, or even a bucket that you store with ice when you use your bar. If you go the cooler or cube route, consider adding an ice cube to the mix so you can grab clean ice when you’re making a cocktail.
Even if your beer garden is only a few feet from your house, it is still exposed to the elements. The wind can ruin even the best laid plans, especially when it comes to glass. Consider plastic or metal glasses to give your barware durability (and save yourself the hassle of trying to sweep broken glass from uneven exterior surfaces). Moscow mule cups – like these from Crate & Barrel, which come in metallic finishes far beyond standard copper, can be a stylish and durable addition to your bar.
To get the most out of your bar, you’ll want to be able to get comfortable. Whether you add bar stools around a high table, Adirondack chairs, or a couple of benches, adding a few thoughtful seating touches can make all the difference. Outdoor pillows and some blankets (Mexican blankets are great for their warmth and durability) can extend the hours of use of your outdoor bar well into the night. If your outdoor bar is fairly exposed, choose a weatherproof storage space that can fit in a basket for these added convenience touches to protect and keep them clean.
Lighting and more
Speaking of enjoying the evening in your bar, don’t forget about the lighting. There are tons of solar options that save you from needing to have electricity in your bar. Citronella candles can add a nice ambient glow and keep pests away. You have options, but don’t forget to think about how your bar will spend from day to night. Because sure, we all love to socialize during the day on a summer weekend, but most of your bar usage will likely decrease later in the day.
Now that you’ve started to set the mood, we’ve got a few more tips to help you make your outdoor bar feel like you’re in an oasis.
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Time for the fun part! You have worked hard so that your bar is marked. Now, you can relax and enjoy it. If you’re hosting friends or family, make entertaining easier for yourself by taking a few steps to prepare.
- If you don’t have a refrigerator at your outdoor bar, have drinks on ice a couple of hours before people arrive. Even if you do, make sure you have clean ice accessible for cocktails. Combine with a spoon or tongs for easy serving.
- Consider making a large pitcher of a signature cocktail to minimize the amount of bartending you’ll have to do. Then, offer wine, beer, and strong alcohol with basic mixers like sparkling water, tonic, lemons, and limes, and you’re done!
- If you have candles outside, set a reminder to light them on your phone so that they go out ten minutes before people arrive.
- Put blankets over their seats so people know they are free to use.
So, relax and enjoy! One of the best things about a beer garden is how easy it is to house and clean. Does anyone make a mess? Without worries. You can just water everything later.
Greetings to the summer!