Another one of my favorite things…margaritas! But do you want to know my number one trick to kicking off a great party? Have your friends make their own drinks with a DIY Margarita Bar! It’s super fun and festive! The exciting part is seeing all the creative margs your friends can create!
Ha…. but really. A DIY Cocktail Bar can be a fantastic way to open up the evening and the best part?
It gives you a chance to get all those last minute things together without having to fill everyone’s glass.
Picture it… you’re first two guests have arrived and they’re those guests that don’t know anyone but you. You need a quick five minute buffer to get them rolling while you attend to the overflowing pot of pasta on the stove. A DIY Cocktail Bar can be the easy trick to introducing the two of them and doing an ‘activity’ together.
And lets be real, a drinking activity can be the best introduction.
A DIY Cocktail Bar gives both you and your guests freedom as far as your wallet goes too. They aren’t going through all of your best liquor, but they still get some freedom in making their own drink. Today, we are focusing more on how to make a margarita. Follow below to grab my best tips for putting your own margarita bar together for your own gathering!
We originally aired this great entertaining post with Emily Schuman from Cupcakes and Cashmere.. check out her site for more great tips and tricks!
Set the scene: Grab a bar cart or a simple table from your home that you can re-purpose. For this, we used my normal bar cart and added in a yellow side table from my patio. Chances are, you already have everything you need to create a “bar” at home! Before setting any party up, I always layout what I have from my own crazy closet before I go out and buy everything I think I “need” at Target!
Texture and Color: Think table runners, throw rugs, and textiles. For this, we used a patterned rug, a strand of papel picado, and fun baskets and crates. This makes the whole area look super inviting! It’s also a great conversation starter to get your guests moving and mingling a little.
Flowers are never a bad idea!: We added a decorative floral element by purchasing, then emptying (you can save the food in a separate container, or serve it at your party!), and cleaning cans of Mexican food like El Pato Salsa, and repurposing them as vases, with succulents and bright flowers. My go to entertaining decor is always, always, always fresh flowers! They are inexpensive and always add a pop to any decor.
Fresh Fruit: Lemons, limes, and grapefruit, oh my! Don’t be shy on the citrus. This is a margarita bar after all. Cut up tons of citrus fruits for garnish, and don’t forget the salt!
Grab some Juice: Make it easy on yourself and grab some pre-made juice to put on your margarita bar cart. There are tons of organic and fresh options now. For the basics, go with grapefruit, lime, and maybe a fruity lemonade, if you have kids coming over. Throw them in your best pitchers or mason jars for a fun arrangement.
Make One Frozen Margarita: But only if you feel like it! Frozen margaritas can be tricky because the margarita mix tends to melt quickly. If you are really into frozen margaritas or you know you’ll friends will enjoy them, I say make one version and drink it first. A neat trick is to put the juice of whatever flavor you’re making frozen (strawberry, orange, mango, coconut water) into ice cube molds the night before, let them freeze solid, and right before the party starts, whiz the ice cubes in a blender for about 30 seconds – 1 minute. Place it on your margarita bar front and center so that it’s one of the first ones to go!
Did someone say Tequila?!: A standard margarita has tequila and some kind of orange liqueur. Stock up on Gold and Silver tequila (or even Mezcal for a more intense, smoky flavor) and opt for some Cointreau or Grand Marnier (it’s much better in quality than the traditional Triple Sec)! Just make sure any tequila you buy is made with 100% agave, which are the better quality bottles. To help your guests along, print out a margarita recipe that you love for some guidance!
And now, it’s Party Ready: Once you have all of these checked off your list, it’s time to get the party started! And what better way to intensify the sweet, salty, and sometimes spicy flavor of a margarita than with Guacamole for a Crowd! Or any one of your favorite Mexican party foods or appetizers! Enjoy!
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