Creating a Dry Bar in Your Kitchen: Tips and Ideas

Jenny Cazares | Discovery Team | Dean Cabinetry

By: Jenny Cazares

A dry bar is a designated space in your kitchen, or any other area in your home, where you can serve beverages from.

What makes it dry?

A dry bar means this area of cabinetry does not have a sink.

dry bar
John Dean Custom Inset -Dean Cabinetry

Why would I want a dry bar?

If you like a specific area for preparing cocktails and serving beers, sodas, seltzers, or even coffee and tea, a dry bar might be a great option for you. If there is enough counter space, it also makes a lovely spot to place hors d’oeuvres and other food, where family and friends can serve themselves. 

kitchen dry bar
Fabuwood Stock Dry Bar-Dean Cabinetry

What should I put in my dry bar?

Clients love to include appliances such as beverage refrigerators, refrigerator drawers, ice makers, a small 18” dishwasher, dishwasher drawers, a drawer microwave, and even built-in coffee makers. Items like instant tea kettles, countertop coffee makers, and even a SodaStream can sit on the countertop. 

It’s also a good idea to include storage for wine and alcohol bottles, along with glassware, and dishes, for serving guests.

wine dry bar
Eudora Semi-Custom Navy Full Overlay -Dean Cabinetry

How is a dry bar usually designed?

A client will typically choose a designated wall space where they can add a dry bar. A dry bar can consist of only base cabinets, like in this photo below. Isn’t it lovely with the open shelf above and seasonal decorations displayed?! You’ll see this client has her Keurig coffee maker, mugs, beautifully displayed fresh baked muffins, and even breakfast she had prepared for her son the day we were at her home for a follow-up visit!

separate dry bar
Fabuwood Stock Cabinetry

Some clients like to add wall cabinets over their base cabinets. The wall cabinets will add additional storage and create another beautiful look. 

Wall cabinets with glass doors, and even interior lighting, will accent the items you place in those wall cabinets. 

dry bar kitchen
John Dean Custom Blue Pantry

Here is an example of a dry bar that is currently being used as a coffee station. In this example, the clients chose to have cabinets that sit on the counter. This provides more of a hutch style, custom look.

island dry bar
John Dean Custom with Countertop Cabinets

Pullouts in your base cabinets are great for storing wine and alcohol bottles. Shallow drawers in the base cabinets are perfect for coffee pods, tea, napkins, straws, mixing utensils, and other necessities.

Where should I put my dry bar?

Depending on your space, you may have a few options for locations. Clients may choose to add one in their kitchen, butler’s pantry, dining room, family room, entertainment room, basement, outdoor patio, and even master bedrooms. 

If you have the space available, you can dream up the perfect dry bar. This area will be sure to add enjoyment, both on a daily basis, and when you are entertaining.

Talk to your kitchen designer today about your options for a dry bar; your possibilities are endless! Maybe your kitchen design could benefit from adding a wet bar.