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Old 08-03-2007, 10:17 PM   #1
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Default In-Home Bars. Are they really all they can be?

I want to formally register a complaint that I've often felt when around in-home bars. Understand, it's not directed at anyone's own design. Lord knows it takes a lot of skill and patience and dedication to make such a divine creation. This is just about home bars in general. This is actually more of a brain storming session. What makes a good in-home bar?

Here's what I'm thinking... It seems to me that in-home bars are more-often-than-not designed just like public bars-- Facing the bartenders, just like in diners, to maximize the ease with which the bartender can pour a pint. Is it just me? Or does this seem weird to anybody else for use as an in-home setup?

It seems to me, that if I had my own bar, I'm not going to be sitting behind it hour after hour like a hired bartender. So why are home bars set up like that? Shouldn't they be oriented toward the TV? Shouldn't they be a little more accommodating. Should they really be so high? Why aren't they surrounded by lay-z-boys rather than tall wooden chairs? Why not build it into a coffee table?

I'm trying to envision the perfect in-home bar, but as hard as I think, I can't exactly imagine what would be the most utilitarian, what would be the coziest.... Maybe press it against the wall? Why give the illusion that there's a place for a guy to stand back there and pour a drink? I mean, let's be realistic. What's the point in that? It's a HOME bar! Unless you are rich enough to hire a bartender, what's the point?

Forget building something that people look at and say, "Ah HA! That's a BAR!!!" Forget that. What about making something that functions better in a home? What features would you include? How would you orient it? What shape would it take? Would it really be square and blocky and pressed up against the far back wall? Surely, there must be a better way........

What would the home shrine to beer look like? Me, I'm not certain exactly, but I'm pretty sure it wouldn't look like what you see in a bar....

Any opinions?

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Old 08-03-2007, 11:55 PM   #2
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For a beer bar, I'd probably put the taps at the end near a wall, so they would be easy to get at from either side. Actually, a kegger would do this just fine. As soon as you add wine or hard liquors the tradition setup works about as well as you can hope. Part of the purpose of a bar is to protect the bottles from stumbling drunks.

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Old 08-04-2007, 12:04 AM   #3
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Couldn't agree more. My last bar was a walk behind that SWMBO insisted upon. It pissed me off for the last 13 years because it got in the way of the pool table and it was full of junk behind it. I'm building a new one and there will be no 'behind' except for the keezer.

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Old 08-04-2007, 12:31 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david_42
For a beer bar, I'd probably put the taps at the end near a wall, so they would be easy to get at from either side. Actually, a kegger would do this just fine. As soon as you add wine or hard liquors the tradition setup works about as well as you can hope. Part of the purpose of a bar is to protect the bottles from stumbling drunks.

Good point. What about two separate "mini bars". One would have your taps, the other would have your hard liquor, and the kegerator/freezer, with available ice for the mixed drinks and chilling for the kegs arranged in the middle. You can still keep a very nice "formal" set up to the hard liquor which will demand drunks approach with reverence... and a convenient, thin and streamlined, tap system for pouring yourself a beer with minimal fuss....
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Old 08-04-2007, 01:03 AM   #5
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Actually, not a bad idea. Perhaps a modified side board that sits against the wall. With a low table and some club chairs as the "bar" area. Kind of like the office bars of the 50's.

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Old 08-04-2007, 01:12 AM   #6
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My whole house is a bar.

Hard Liquor in the Entertainment center by the TV.
Wine is below that.
Beer on tap in the Mud/Laundry Room.

Some people know where I stash my reasearch (commercial bottles) in the regular fridge.

When people are over they are welcome to sit at our breakfast bar, or on the couch by the TV, or outside on the patio, or in the pool or in the garage.

I'm planning an outdoor fireplace/grill/brewery/bar.

As for why people make home bars like bars?

Because they can. They have the space or the means, etc.
For the same reason people have theme guest bathrooms or guest rooms. Does the theme bedroom make you sleep any better? No. Will you get cleaner in a heart shaped tub? Of course not.

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Old 08-04-2007, 01:47 AM   #7
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I'd set up my bar as a totally self serve set-up.Walk up...pour yourself a cold one and come back and sit down at the TV, teh kitchen table, the kithen island or whatever.

I have my taps sey up in my kithen that way cuz I ain't gonna be anybodies bar b!tch.. Besides, the hard liquor and mixers are "over there"...help yourself. This is a biermuncher house baby.

[EDIT] This post and many others from this night shall not be spell checked...deel with it.

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Old 08-04-2007, 05:37 AM   #8
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My bar is a converted closet. Our 3rd bedroom is a joke, it has sliding glass door that is the only way into the backyard. It's useless as a bedroom so I converted the closet into a bar.

Walk up, fridge is underneath bottles on top. Now I need to set up a keg solution. I'm thinking about installing a small fridge in the linen closet next to the existing bar and mounting faucets in the common wall between the bar and linen closet.

Now I just have to find a place to put the linens...

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Old 08-04-2007, 06:32 AM   #9
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My favorite place is behind the bar. That's why I set mine up that way. When I have a party, I'm the bartender and ultimately I get to talk to EVERYONE at the party. I love pouring and serving my beer.

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Old 08-04-2007, 01:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewtopia
My favorite place is behind the bar. That's why I set mine up that way. When I have a party, I'm the bartender and ultimately I get to talk to EVERYONE at the party. I love pouring and serving my beer.
That is exactly my philosophy. When I have parties I'm behind the bar 99% of the time. I set mine up so the big screen is in perfect view, and I love every moment of it.

The important thing for me is explaining the different styles of beer to the uninformed.
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