couple clinking wine glasses

We have hosted many Christmas celebrations over the years, and alongside lots of food, fun, games, and gift exchanges, drinks aplenty are flowing. But sometimes we spend so much time focusing on the items we’ll need for the dinner table that we forget about the bar. With that said, there are some great bar and wine essentials that are worth looking into before the holiday season begins, whether it’s for your Christmas or other holiday plans, New Year’s celebrations, or just casual gatherings with friends and family.

Know which drink is yours 

Wine glass charms

One issue I often find arises when we have groups of friends over is that everyone puts a wine glass down, then forgets which one belongs to whom. Instead of examining the glass for lipstick marks, you could grab a set of cute charms that hook to the stem of the glass for easy identification. Ones like the Signa silicone glass markers can clip around the stem or opposite edge of a glass, or even hook around a straw for kids’ drinks. They come in eight distinct colours so you’ll always know which glass is yours.

gold flower wine stopperPreserve leftover wine

Leftover wine? What’s that? Jokes aside, sometimes the party goes on longer than anticipated, and the wine bottles begin the stack up. If you find you have a bit leftover after all of the guests have said their goodbyes, a bottle stopper will keep the remains of an uncorked bottle fresh for another night or two. This helps avoid you drinking more than you want, or wasting half of a really expensive bottle. Go festive with one like the Handcrafted gold flower designed wine stopper that also conveniently doubles as a candle holder.

Ice moldsMake drinks look and taste cool

If you want to impress your guests with cool drinks that are both refreshingly cold and look awesome, consider picking up ice moulds that can freeze water into shapes beyond the standard cube. The Sharper Image ice moulds will provide spherical circles of ice that add a touch of fun to drinks. Pop one into a whiskey on the rocks, or add them to non-alcoholic punch and the kids will love it, too.

Whiskey stonesAn alternative is whiskey stones, which you can easily pop into the freezer and use to chill a drink without watering it down. This Whiskey Stones set comes with nine cubes so, with two sets, you should have enough cubes for everyone to enjoy with their whiskey, vodka, or other special holiday drink.

Keep the drinks flowing

There’s nothing worse than wanting to open a nice bottle of corked wine and being unable to find a corkscrew. Grab one with a built-in spring so you don’t need to tug hard to get the cork to come out.

bar and wine essentials - crystalite bohemia quadro 3-piece whiskey decanter

If your party is less Sex and the City and more Mad Men, opt to keep the two fingers of whiskey flowing with a classy-looking decanter, like the Crystalite Bohemia quadro 3-piece whiskey decanter, which comes with a pair of matching glasses.

For playing bartender and making fancy cocktails, a cocktail shaker might come in handy. I love using mine for everything from homemade mojitos in the summer to margaritas for Cinco de Mayo and, for the holidays, a bit of rum punch or a shaken martini.

Aarke soda machineAdd some bubbly

No, I’m not referring to champagne, although champagne is a great idea for toasting as well. I’m talking about a sparkling water maker, which will quickly become one of your favourite bar accessories. Serve up some plain sparkling water to refresh guests and cleanse their palettes until the next course (or drink) or liven it up with some fresh fruit, cucumbers, mint, or flavouring drops. With alcoholic drinks, you can also add some flare with a bit of homemade sparkling water, like mimosas on Christmas morning or an amped up sangria. SodaStream is the most well-known brand in this space, and one of those machines would be perfect for the bar. I also recently reviewed the Aarke Carbonator 3 sparking water maker and while it’s on the more expensive side, I would highly recommend it as a stylish, easy to use, and convenient option to add to the home bar as well.

Check out plenty more bar and wine essentials at Best Buy Online.

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