Tips for creating a dedicated drinks area

Photo:  Stephani Buchman

A growing trend in recent years has been to incorporate specialized drink stations (including wine displays) into home design. Whether you’re a coffee lover, a wine enthusiast, or someone who enjoys entertaining guests, a personalized beverage station can add a touch of luxury and convenience to your living space.

Location, location, location

The first step in creating this type of dedicated area is to choose the correct location. The ideal spot will depend on your preferences, available space, and the type of beverages you plan to serve or display. A small corner of your kitchen is perfect for transforming into a cosy coffee bar (make sure there is enough countertop depth) or wine display. This location is convenient for daily use and integrates your drinks station into your overall kitchen design. It’s good to keep in mind that wine should be stored away from potential sources of vibration, such as appliances. This expediates the chemical reactions and advances maturity, undermining the benefits of long-term aging.

If you love to entertain, a dining room drinks station can become a stylish focal point during dinner parties and gatherings. Consider incorporating a wine rack, bar cart, or coffee nook to enhance the space’s overall functionality. A drinks station in the living room can be an excellent option for a more casual and relaxed vibe.

Photo:  Naimh Barry Photography
Photo: Naimh Barry Photography

The set up

Once you’ve chosen the location, it’s time to focus on the design and functionality. Investing in quality storage is important to keep your beverages and accessories organized. When it comes to a wine display, there are two main types. One that is temperature-controlled (cooling units such as a wine fridge will be required) and the other purely for display. To keep the design cohesive, choose wine racks that complement the overall aesthetic of the room. Popular materials include wood, glass, and stainless steel. Ensure that bottles are placed horizontally. This is better for the wine, keeps the corks moist, and ensures minimal air seeps into the bottle. To keep your drinks station looking tidy, incorporate shelves or drawers.

Photo:  Stephani Buchman
Photo: Stephani Buchman

In this project, the visual anchor element became a feature wall with the vast wine collection within the dining space, bringing the key focal point to the room.

Depending on your beverage preferences, you may need specific equipment such as an espresso machine, coffee maker, blender, or wine cooler (many different sizes available). Choose high-quality items that look stylish and perform well to ensure a perfect drink every time. Next, add decorative elements to enhance the aesthetics of your drinks station. Consider incorporating artwork, plants, or decorative accessories that reflect your style and complement your home’s decor. Of course, good lighting is essential for creating the right look and highlighting your drink station’s features.

Consider adding task and ambient lighting for preparation areas to create a warm and welcoming ambience. Wine and lighting don’t pair well, so using LED lights and adding dimmer controls reduces the risk of UV exposure and can set the mood for intimate and evening entertaining.

Photo:  Naimh Barry Photography
Photo: Naimh Barry Photography

Long-term use

Maintaining your beverage station is essential for it to remain functional and inviting. Regularly clean and organize the area. By carefully choosing the location, designing the perfect set-up, personalizing the space, and maintaining it regularly, you can create an entertaining hub you’ll love using and sharing with others.

Jessica Cinnamon
Jessica Cinnamon

Jessica Cinnamon is the principal designer and founder of Toronto-based Jessica Cinnamon Design Inc., a multi-disciplinary design company that creates stylish and well-curated interiors, and provides complete bespoke residential design services in Toronto, the GTA, cottage country, Chicago, and Los Angeles.

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