Whether you simply want to enjoy a drink in style at home or entertain friends, a barware set is an absolute essential. But with so many excellent ones to choose from, it can be hard to pick the right one for you. In this article, we’ll guide you through everything you need to know about barware sets and how to use them.

There’s nothing quite like the experience of mixing your favorite cocktail all by yourself. Once you’ve conquered your fears and learned how to handle the tools, it can be a great way to unwind after a long day. It’s also the perfect way to impress guests once you’ve brushed up on your mixing skills. So, let’s get started.

The Basic Home Bar Tools

The basic home bar tools to get you started.

A typical barware set comes with several tools and accessories. And while not all sets come with the same tools, it’s important for you to learn and understand the specific tasks they each perform. This will help you identify which tools to look for when purchasing your first barware set.

Here are the essential items that are typically included in most sets:

Shaker: The shaker is always an essential part of any barware set. It’s used to mix, aerate, and chill all the ingredients for a perfectly blended shaken cocktail. There are several varieties of shakers, although the Cobbler shakers are the best recommended for beginners.

Its one-piece tumbler comes with a strainer and cap, making it easier to use. On the other hand, Boston shakers are more popular among professional bartenders and come with two cups of different sizes that fit together to shake. This doesn’t usually have a strainer and needs more experience to use.

Jigger: Cocktails are made with a combination of ingredients that should be perfectly measured in fluid ounces, and a jigger is what’s used to measure them. This makes it easy to follow cocktail recipes while keeping the proportions correct.

Strainer: Strainers ensure that any residue from ingredients doesn’t get into the final cocktail. You will need to select the strainer based on the type of tumbler you use for mixing. The Hawthorne strainer is a good option to choose since the coiled design helps it to fit well into a Cobbler shaker and most other mixing tumblers.

Mixing glass: Mixing glasses are used to mix cocktails that are stirred, such as those using light mixers or only alcohol. These are often designed as straight tall glasses with a heavy base, which makes it easier to stir without spilling. The ones designed with a spout make it easier to pour after stirring.

Bar spoon: These spoons feature a longer handle so they can be used conveniently to stir cocktails in the tall mixing glass.

Muddler: This is used to smash herbs, fruits, spices, and ice when preparing cocktails. For instance, the muddler is used to mash and infuse mint when making mojitos. They come in different materials and designs such as the wooden pestle types and sophisticated stainless steel.

Citrus press: This is often a hand press with a lever to make it easier to extract citrus juice more effectively. It’s a great tool if you intend to make a lot of citrus-based cocktails.

While these are all important and useful tools to keep in your home bar, you may not need all of them when you’re starting out. Having said that, buying a barware set is always cheaper than purchasing each accessory separately over time. It will also save you the hassle of searching for various items and ensures that you’re buying from a reputable brand that can assure quality.

The Best Barware Cocktail Sets

Now let’s take a look at the best barware sets available that are also great for beginners. We picked the top six based on quality, features, value for money, and user reviews.

1. Mixology Bartender Kit by Mixology & Craft

Mixology and craft home bar barware set with bamboo stand.

This is an impressively designed barware set that could make a great starter kit for some stylish mixing. It’s a 10-piece set that comes with a 24 oz Cobbler-style shaker, double-sided jigger, muddler, mixing spoon, and a Hawthorne strainer. It also includes two liquor pourers, a pair of ice tongs, and a double-lever corkscrew. They are all neatly assembled in a stylish bamboo stand to keep your home bar clutter-free. And when you purchase this set, you will also get free access to the online cocktail recipe catalog of Mixology & Craft.

This set is exceptionally high-quality that has both style and class. Made with premium-grade, heavy-duty stainless steel, it’s built to be rust-proof and durable. And Mixology & Craft assures a full refund if you’re not satisfied with their product and also provides a 3-year extended warranty.

The only negative review about this dishwasher safe bar kit is the shaker which can sometimes be difficult to open. It’s also worth being careful around its sharp edges.

But overall, this set is an impressive choice by a highly regarded brand. Its stylish looks and premium quality make it a great option for a beginner looking to impress guests.

You can easily buy this great cocktail kit here.

2. Cocktail Mixology Bartender Kit by Royale Mix

This barware set by Royale Mix is another classy option with tons of great features. It comes with 11 pieces that are all stylishly designed while assuring superior quality. It includes a Cobbler-style shaker, wooden pestle-style muddler, Hawthorne strainer, mixing spoon, tongs, liquor pourers, corkscrew, and two double-sided jiggers. These are all packed in a beautiful crate-style wooden stand.

This set stands out because of its meticulous attention to detail, which provides its premium appeal. Some examples of this are the hand-crafted rustic wooden stand, or the ergonomically designed acacia wood muddler made with a natural food-grade mineral oil finish for your safety.

We really couldn’t find anything to dislike about this barware set other than the fact that it’s priced higher than most, but it seems to be worth the price.

Overall, it’s a great value for money if you’re looking for a barware set that combines style with quality.

Like it? Click here to buy.

3. Highball & Chaser Bartender Kit

Highball and chaser barware set with espresso stand.

This classy barware set is made by Highball & Chaser, a well-known premium brand. It features a complete set of dishwasher-safe tools made with rust-proof, premium-quality stainless steel.

Apart from the impressive quality, it’s also designed with functionality, convenience, and ease of use in mind. For instance, the extra-long muddler is super convenient when in a rush, and the Hawthorne strainer is designed to filter unwanted seeds and other bits and pieces effectively.

You will also get a stylish leak-proof cobbler, bar knife, and a mesh strainer. The lemon zester with a channel knife is another exciting addition to make fancy twists of lemon for a touch of flamboyance for your cocktails.

All these are assembled in a beautifully designed and sturdy bamboo stand with a natural espresso finish. But perhaps the best part is that you also get free access to a range of recipes to help you make some exotic cocktails.

Overall, there isn’t much to complain about with this barware set, as it leaves nothing to chance with its thoughtfully designed tools. The Highball & Chaser Bartender Kit is one of the best kits you could find.

If this sounds like the perfect cocktail kit for you, click here to buy.

4. 16-Piece Mixology Bartender Kit by Mixology and Craft

16-piece barware set by mixology and craft with cocktail cards.

With a grand total of 16 pieces, you’ll really be getting your money’s worth. Made of high-quality and rust-proof stainless steel, you can be rest assured that this set is built to last.

Included are the standard accessories such as a muddler, mixing spoon, Hawthorne strainer, 24 oz leak-proof cobbler-style shaker, ice tongs, and double-sided jigger.

But in addition, it comes with two liquor pourers with rubber cups, two wine bottle stoppers, two cocktail picks, and an easy to use double-lever corkscrew. And the stylish stainless steel half-gallon ice bucket makes another great addition to this comprehensive set of bar accessories. All these items are dishwasher safe to make cleanup even easier.

The only thing missing in this comprehensive barware set is a stand to keep them neatly displayed on your bar counter. But despite that, it’s an excellent choice considering the number of accessories you get.

Ready to buy? Click here.

5. Jillmo Cocktail Shaker Set With Waterproof Travel Bag

Jillmo home bar accessories barware set with waterproof travel bag.

This 5-star rated barware set is the best choice for when you’re on the go. It also makes an awesome gift for father’s day or for your aspiring bartender friend.

The Jillmo Cocktail Shaker Set is a 14-piece kit that features a range of premium quality stainless steel bar accessories and tools. It includes both julep and Hawthorne strainers, a 190 oz Parisian cocktail shaker, fine mesh strainer, muddler, double-sided jigger, twisted mixing spoon, and ice tongs. Moreover, you will also find two liquor pourers, a lemon zester and squeezer, bottle opener, and a corkscrew.

Perhaps best of all, it comes with a large, high-quality travel bag that’s also waterproof. The many storage pockets with protective padding can store up to five breakables, including a whiskey glass, and bottles of rum, tequila, or Blue Bols. However, depending on which bottles you select, you might need to do some rearranging since it could get tricky to zip the bag with everything in place.

If you’re looking for a barware set that’s easy to travel with but won’t get in the way, this compact design will keep all of your tools tucked neatly inside the travel bag until you’re ready to use them.

To learn more, click here.

6. Rustic Bartender Kit with Stand by Mixology & Craft

Mixology and craft rustic home bar accessories with stand.

Looking for something with a little more flair? Then this rustic-style barware set is for you. Included are a rust-free cocktail shaker, double-sided jigger, mixing spoon, and two cocktail picks. It also comes with two beautiful stemless Martini glasses to get you started.

The rustic stand is hand-crafted with a lot of character and is designed to keep all the accessories organized for a clutter-free bar counter. It also comes with a rustic rope so you can mount it on the wall for both storage and display, and the recipe cards make it easy to get your creativity flowing.

These dishwasher-safe accessories are built with high durability for a lasting finish, and Mixology & Craft’s warranties and full refund policies are also there for your peace of mind.

The only negative review is about the built-in strainer of the cobbler-style 24 oz shaker, which can come off from time to time.

Nevertheless, the Rustic Bartender Kit with Stand by Mixology & Craft is a 5-star rated barware set crafted with durability and functionality in mind. Designed with rustic character, it’s also another unique gift option.

Like what you see? Buy it here.

To Sum It Up…

If you’re thinking of starting a home bar and trying your hand at some impressive cocktails, then you need an equally impressive barware set to get you started. They’re much more budget-friendly because they take out the guesswork by ensuring you have all the essential tools.

With one of these sets in your home bar arsenal, you’ll be crafting some of the best cocktails around. Bottoms up!