Building Your Basic Bar

Start with 7 Base Spirits (and brands I personally like)

BASE SPIRIT                            CHEAPER                                   EXPENSIVE


White Rum                             Plantation Five Star                    Banks 5 Island Rum

Gin                                             Beefeater                                      Hendricks or Sipsmith

Bourbon                                   Evan Williams                            Michters or Knob Creek

Dry Vermouth                       Noilly Pratt                                Dolin

Sweet Vermouth                   Dolin                                            Carpano Antica

Brandy                                      Paul Masson VSOP                    Courvoisier

Amber Rum                            Appleton                                      El Dorado Aged

Add Bitters and Syrups

Angostura Bitters, Orange Bitters, Simple Syrup, Orgeat, Grenadine, Honey Syrup

Fresh citrus is a must! Fresh mint is nice too.

Lemons, limes, and oranges to begin. Grapefruits and pineapple for the more adventurous or Tiki-minded. Fresh mint for smashes, juleps, cobblers, swizzles and as a garnish. 

Mixers

Seltzer

Tonic

Ginger Beer

Champagne (or other sparkling wine)  

Cola                                                              

For a sweeter palate, include some of these liquors

 

LIQUOR                                    CHEAPER                                   EXPENSIVE


Orange                                       Triple Sec                                    Cointreau

Maraschino                              Luxardo                                       Luxardo 

Elderflower                             St Elder                                        St Germaine

Coffee                                        Kahlua                                          St. George 

Amaretto                                  Disaronno                                   Lanzarotti

Irish Cream                             Bailey’s                                         Five Farms  

Crème de Cacao                      Giffard                                         Tempus Fugit 

For a bitter palate, add two or more of these liquors

Campari                                                                    

Cynar      

Nonino Amaro

Frenet Branca

Aperol

Egg whites and cream...

Fresh egg whites for flips and sours. Whole eggs for nogs. Fresh heavy cream for dessert drinks.