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A Dad’s Guide To Entertaining At Home

A party primer for the man of the house, with everything he needs to make Saturday nights epic, from bar essentials to music


Being cooped up for such a long period of time is sure to have even the most homebodied homebody craving for some social contact. With Father’s Day coming up, Dads are sure to be itching to have some chill time with friends and family. Thus we came up with a helpful guide to make sure your home is ready to be at the center of the action as you plan for your guests.   Hosting at home shouldn’t feel claustrophobic or boring. There seems to be the idea that you’d have to go out to have some fun, but you can easily create a space in your home where you can experience it just the same (also we don’t really have the luxury of leaving). And, it has that added bonus of being just a few steps away from your bed when the party’s over. Now let’s go and make that space perfect for you.






Building A Bar


You don’t have to be a professional bartender to give your guests a nice bar experience from the comfort of your home. First-timers and veteran flairmans alike can easily allocate a good space for some mixing creativity, which could really come in handy when fixing up cocktails and other beverages for your party. But first, a few important things:  


The Bar


If your home has a built-in and fully equipped wet-bar, congratulations! If you don’t, however, that’s what we’re here for. You’ll want to have a dedicated space for your spirits to have an easy time of making your hit drinks. An open corner or space can easily be turned into a socializing hub with a bar cart. With the comeback of cocktail culture, this piece is sure to be the up and coming star of your entertainment space to be admired and enjoyed as it showcases your spirits and glassware in an organized as well as aesthetic manner.





Choose the right bar cart for you by considering your storage needs. Need more space for your glassware? Hanging storage could be useful. Are you a wine-lover? Perhaps it would be more prudent to select one with a built-in wine rack. Bar carts come in different shapes and sizes, so make sure to get one that complements its surrounding space as well.   Have a look at Crate & Barrel’s to find the perfect bar cart or cabinet to house your liquor. The existence of these elegant pieces is proof that functional can be stylish and vice versa.




The Essentials


What we call “the essentials” are the most basic equipment necessary for your bartending starter pack. We can typically group these tools according to their function: ingredient prep, mixers, or service. To prepare your ingredients, you would need a juicer (because freshness is key), a muddler (the flavour unlocker), strainers, ice trays and ice molds. In actually putting the components together, you’ll need shakers, bar spoons, jiggers, and mixing glasses to craft your cocktail to perfection. And finally, you’ll never go wrong with a few collins, rocks, or coupe glasses to serve your drinks. It’s easy to find these tools if you know where to look. Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barns, and Rustan’s would be a good place to start hunting.



Bleeker Bar Collection | @potterybarnph


However, if you’re struggling to fit them all in your space, we would suggest to get the Wild & Wolf Cocktail Multi-Tool : a 10-in-1 function tool with a traditional Swiss blade design and a stylish box that would fit right in on your bar cart.


Wild and Wolf Cocktail Tool | Courtesy of Rustan's







The Actual Alcohol   Bitters


Characterized by a bitter, sour, or bittersweet flavour, bitters are typically high proof alcohol infused with botanical matter as a drink additive. They will be available in any liquor store.  


Foundation spirits


Choose your fighter: gin, tequila, or rum? Maybe even whiskey if you’re up to it! You don’t have to have everything. Just select your favourites and start out small. Focusing on certain cocktails and mixes will ensure a certain level of mastery and attention to detail that your guests will surely appreciate.  


Mixers


Mixers enhance your drinks to bring out the fun and flavours that would otherwise be lost if your drink is too alcoholic to enjoy them. Stock up on fresh juices, soda water, cola, tonic water or tonic syrups according to your tastes. Remember - the fresher, the better!  


Garnishes


Cocktail garnishes are decorative elements which add character or style to mixed drinks. Used to complement and enhance flavor, it stimulates the senses through  smell and taste, apart from the visual treat. Slices of fruit are popular, particularly of the citrus variety. Spices and condiments can also serve as garnishes, as well as vegetables and certain proteins like fennel and shrimp!



Death & Co., available in Fully Booked | @fullybookedph


A Bartending Bible


Bartending, like cooking, can be studied. If you don’t know how, you can always look for a book or two that you can use as your reference to learn all about it! We recommend checking out Death & Co., which could arguably be called the bartending bible. And yes, it has the same name as that famously classy cocktail bar in Manhattan. Imagine, with this, everything you need to know about bartending - from theory to philosophy to recipe (over 500 cocktail recipes to try out!) - would be at your fingertips! A complete guide, if there ever was one, it will help you through step by step instructions on techniques, supply you with knowledge tidbits through charts and infographics, and even give you tips on how to buy and use your spirits. Vibrant photos and little entries about bar encounters give character and add that extra visual pizzazz. It’s knowledge wrapped up in a pretty package, which would definitely blend right in with your bar cart’s aesthetic. You can certainly find this treasure at fully booked too.




Are You Game? 


Use your space to indulge in some hobbies too and add some of your favorite games to make sure things never get boring. Depending on how much space you have and how you like to pass time, you can customize your entertainment area to your tastes, and you can include classic games like darts, poker, or even billiards. Pool tables are oftentimes placed in some forgotten corner in the basement until the need for it arises, which is a waste of styling potential. You could feature it as a showcase piece in your entertainment area, both stylish and ready to use in your social gatherings. Choosing what other furniture pieces to harmonize with the look that you want can be tricky, but you’ll never go wrong with sticking to the basics. You could go for modern with clean lines and a minimalist look, accenting the room with interesting light fixtures, or a few popping art pieces. On the other hand, traditional doesn’t necessarily mean outdated if you pick out nice wood paneling and other furniture in earthen tones that go well with your classic built-in bookcases. Capping your night with a drink and a nice game of pool sounds like a perfect end to any social event.





Music Makes People Come Together  


What is a party without good music? The master of secretly setting the ambiance, it ties together every other element present in your little gathering to make it exactly the way you want it. It’s better to personally mix and match songs in your playlist depending on the vibe you’re going for instead of relying on already existing ones. That is not to say that you can’t draw inspiration or ideas from them, though.   If you want a more nostalgic feel, you can use record players and old records for that throwback vibe in reminiscing good times with family and old friends. This goes well with a more intimate get-together, ,music that is personally closer to yourself and your guests to make them feel right at home. Browse through the Satchmi Shop for your vinyl records and player accessories; who knows, you might just find exactly what you’re looking for in their immense selections.





You could also choose a full round sound system or a single speaker to play pleasing music in the background, going for smooth jazz or maybe some nice cool piano instrumentals for a more classy feel. It seems far-fetched to say that a speaker can transform your living space, but that’s exactly what Bang & Olufsen does. Their high-end active loudspeakers blend radical audio technology with graceful aesthetics and meticulous craftsmanship to make sure your everything is running smoothly in your party’s music department.





However, if you’re looking to really party, the sounds become the center rather than the background. Upbeat house, dance music, and some EDM wouldn’t be out of place in this setup, that’s for sure! You can show off some of those hidden DJ skills with the JBL Partybox 1000's 4x4 DJ launchpad, dubbed as the ultimate party machine. This type of event normally calls for a longer guest list and we really shouldn’t be having any of these anytime soon, but it doesn’t hurt to be ready for when we can finally open those doors wide to celebrate the comeback of a COVID-free world.