Grape expectations: Create your own home wine bar

Kathryn Weber
Tribune Content Agency

With generations from Baby Boomers to Millenials drinking more wine, it’s clear that Americans continue to fall ever further in love with the grape.

According to the Wine Institute, wine consumption in the U.S. has gone up from 550 million gallons a year in 2000 to 770 million gallons in 2014 with an average consumption of 2.81 gallons per person. Not only that, but we’re producing more prodigiously as well. If you love wine as much as the rest of America, think about displaying your grape expectations with your own wine bar.

A wine bar can be made out of an unused closet, a converted wardrobe or armoire, a corner of the living room or a bar cart. Even if you just have a small amount of wall space, this can be turned into a dedicated wine bar area. Convert a coat closet into a wine cellar by adding shelves and then replacing the door with a wrought iron wine gate. While not inexpensive, wrought iron wine gates look fabulous and create the cellar feel without having an actual wine cellar. At www.ironwinecellardoors.com, prices start at about $1,000 and go up from there. Another less expensive choice would be a wooden door with a glass insert to dedicate your wine closet space.

If space saving is important for your wine bar, look for a narrow wine cabinet like the Winsome modular cabinet pieces that lets you put together the pieces based on your space size (www.wayfair.com). If space is available, look at outfitting your wine bar with a small round pedestal table between two comfortable chairs to sit and enjoy your wine.

Other options for creating a wine bar include adding a wall mounted table like Ikea’s Bjursta with two bar stools to create your own informal wine spot. Add some shelves, like the Holman Entertaining Shelf from Pottery Barn, to hold wine bottles and wine glasses. These come in four different stains to fit into any decor.

Of course, every wine bar needs accessories. To personalize your wine bar, consider adding a monogrammed wine barrel Lazy Susan to simplify serving at wine tasting parties (www.ballarddesigns.com). Outfit your bar with an insulated wine tub like the insulated Optima Beverage Tub that holds almost a full case of wine and won’t sweat (www.frontgate.com).

Be sure to furnish your wine bar with great wine glasses. All you need are three varieties: a red wine glass, a white wine glass and a champagne flute. To keep glasses from being mixed up at parties, add a Wine Glass Writer marker that lets guests write their names on the glasses (www.surlatable.com). For about $10 you can help you guests identify their glasses and prevent wine from being thrown out and washing glasses endlessly. And, just in case you spill red wine on your white shirt, be prepared with a bottle of Wine Out stain remover (www.bedbathandbeyond.com).

Find a spot in your house to create your own wine bar. You might find that your best bottle was the year you dedicated a spot to your favorite beverage.