Wine, Whiskey and the Wet Bar: Three Design Strategies for Your In-Home Saloon

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The holidays have wrapped and now the crowning moment of Football Season will soon be upon us. What better way to celebrate than in the comfort of your own home, surrounded by family and friends? At KBC, we enjoy a good Super Bowl party as much as you do. That’s why we’ve devoted this journal entry to making the most of your home’s favorite spot for socializing: the in-home bar. Follow our easy design tips and let the game begin!

Pack a Design Punch through Personalization

Today’s in-home bars are the ideal setting for letting playfulness take the reins. Over the last 10-15 years, homeowners have gotten creative with the idea of bringing the bar into the home. And because bars are synonymous with having fun and kicking back, the in-home bar’s design reflects a sense of freedom.

Incorporating bold, onyx shelves with interior lighting would be overpowering in a kitchen. But in an in-home bar, they’re the perfect touch. If you’re a fan of industrial cityscapes, you can incorporate a skyline into your bar’s backdrop. Tend to lean toward the traditional? An Old World, English-style pub is where you’ll want to down a pint while relaxing at home. 

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Situate Your Shelves for Serving

When you’re planning your Super Bowl party, there’s one golden design rule to keep in mind: make everything readily accessible. Where to begin? Your bar’s shelves. All items on your shelves – from your martini shaker to your stemware – should be easy to spot, grab, and use. 

The in-home bar gives all of us the chance to try our hand at the art of bartending. That’s why it’s key to make sure that all items are facing your guests [and your bar’s seating]. Whether you’re flying solo behind the bar or your guests have the freedom to make and pour their own drinks, be sure that your bar’s shelves are situated for convenience and easy imbibing! 

Set the Mood through Lighting

With any room in the home, lighting makes or breaks a space. The same is true for your in-home bar. When selecting the lighting for your bar, consider the location, color palette and overarching design.

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Typically, in-home bars are in the basement and don’t receive much sunlight. Incorporate lighting that looks appealing in the evening, as you’ll often be entertaining after hours. If your bar’s color palette is soft, choose lighting with warm temperatures to maximize color. And finally, utilize lighting to spotlight your bar’s distinct features. If you’ve incorporated a stone backsplash or hung unique art, ensure that your lighting gives it maximum impact. 

With these simple design strategies in mind, you’re ready to host your next Super Bowl party. We’ll be raising a glass of our favorite drink (Magic Hat #9) to you and yours!


At KBC, we are dedicated to reimagining the space you call home. If you’re considering designing or refreshing your dream closet, contact us. We’d love to discuss how we can bring our expertise to work for you and your whole home. Reach us at kbcpgh.com, and get social with us on Facebook @KitchenBathConceptsofPittsburgh and on Instagram @kbcpittsburgh.


To give you further guidance on creating the ideal kitchen for your home, we consulted industry insider Andrea Bernstein Rodarte. Andrea has extensive experience writing about the trends that shape interior design. Below, she shares valuable insights about kitchen islands and the central role they play in our lives. 

Get Your Social Vibe On


– By Andrea Bernstein Rodarte

Easy gatherings around a fabulous fully-equipped family-friendly refreshment center will keep the kitchen clear of foot traffic if you store juices, water and soft drinks in an under counter beverage refrigerator. Snacks and drinks can also be at the ready in refrigerator drawers. Save yourself from carrying barware from the kitchen by including a dishwasher drawer in the wet bar. Keep the look of your stylish new bar by implementing modern under counter appliances including a microwave drawer for popcorn and other snacks, an ice maker that puts out crystal clear cubes, beer on tap where only the tap is visible above counter, and a humidor for the cigar aficionado.
For the serious wine collector or casual enthusiast there are state-of-the art multi-temperature controlled units with various settings for your whites, reds and rosés. The wine chillers can be placed under the counter or create a beautiful full-height statement piece with interior lighting. With such a well equipped bar, you'll be hosting family and guests in a most welcoming manner. Cheers!

Andrea Bernstein Rodarte is an executive editor and author for national publications including home design publications. She has written extensively about topics ranging from luxurious kitchens and baths to gourmet outdoor kitchens, exterior living spaces, sophisticated child-proof pool fencing, and high tech home security systems. With her extensive history in kitchen and bath products and trends, Andrea brings a knowledgeable and unique perspective to her work. 
Sara Ruth