For me, bar carts always seem to draw up fantastically romantic visions of Grace Kelly during classy cocktail hours straight out of “High Society.”
And why wouldn’t they? Though bar carts began as mere modest tea carts in the Victorian age, they reemerged with new purpose in the 1940s when the prohibition ended, and they became a staple for entertaining homemakers and highball-swilling suburbanites.
Fast forward a decade or two to the days of iconic names like the Rat Pack, J.F.K. and Marilyn Monroe, and that shy little tea cart was in every home, restaurant and gin-joint in America.
Sadly, the homogenized house designs of the 1970s included built-in bars and cabinetry that made the bar cart as relevant as the fedora in everyday life. They retreated to dark corners of old-school European restaurants seen only when a man would appear rolling a cart laden with after-dinner cordials, ports and a little digestivo catering to table-side service.
Thankfully, we’re experiencing a sort of cocktail renaissance (thanks Mad Men), which has brought the bar cart into new light! Today they’re space-efficient, multitasking little gems with a touch of vintage flare and an endless range of styling possibilities. They fit in almost any room and can be dressed up or down for almost any occasion.
My bar cart likes to harbor a variety of random items on any given day, from friendly gnomes…
To racy winos…
Taking a casual everyday bar cart to fabulous cocktail connoisseur is a snap though.
Just blend one part lush blooms (real or fake) and two parts colorful bar/glassware.
( ^ Fun chalkboard sign – purchased from the $1 section of Target – is totally optional, but a definite added bonus!)
Be sure you have some full bottles of varying shapes and sizes and you’re golden.
Situate your dressed up little beauty in a bright section of your party area and you’re ready to get crafting with those cocktails!
Stay tuned this week… I’ve got the perfect recipe in mind for you.