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Dec 112015

What is a Wet Bar?

The dictionary says that it's "a bar with running water for serving alcoholic drinks at home".  That's the simplified definition. There's much more... So what is a wet bar?

More than just running water and booze:

wet bar

typical home wet bar with sink and beer tapper system

First, a wet bar should include a sink with running water and a drain. The drink prep area should be designed to both prepare cocktails and contain spills. The bar top design should also prevent over spill on to the floor in the horrific event that someone tips over a full glass of precious beer, wine or liquor.

Proper Drainage:

Spigot drains are also a feature of a true wet bar, one definitely located under your beer tapper, preferably made of stainless steel or brass.  A beer gutter is also a key bar top design feature that allows you to mix drinks or dispense tap beer in a wet area with proper drainage. Beer gutters are absent on most other plans, but not ours. You can opt to skip these features without losing the wet bar function.  See the following examples and more essential wet bar features below...

Basic Wet Bar

wine bar

Even without a sink, this wine bar is considered a wet bar. Notice the perimeter containment of the bar top leading to the beer gutter, keeping liquid spills under control.

Outdoor Wet Bar

45 degree patio wet bar

Poolside Patio Wet Bar with running water and draft beer tower. All this combined with the tile top and perimeter containment qualifies this as a great wet bar example.

Classic Home Wet Bar

home wet bar setup

This is a classic example of a complete home wet bar setup. It includes a fully functional bar sink and draft beer towers with spigot drains and even a dishwasher. Include a lower drink prep area and beer gutter.

Don't Get Zapped!

Safety first! Water and electricity are a deadly mix. In any wet bar area, proper electrical protection should be  provided using GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) protected electrical power outlets. This safety breaker device protects against dangerous electrical faults that could occur in drink mixers and other electrical devices. GFCI protection is recommended for outlets near any sources of moisture. Don't forget, they now make power receptacles with USB charging plugs!

Install A Ground Fault Cicuit Interrupter

Control Counter Top Slop:

Counter tops should have glassware mats for proper drying and sinks should include drain filters to prevent stir sticks from clogging the trap. Mold and mildew are always a threat, remember to stock up on kitchen cleaning products designed to kill germs.
Lysol or a simple bleach solution will prevent bar moisture from turning into bar mold.

Drip Mat's and Catches

Avoid Trench Foot:

The floor area behind the bar should be sloped toward the nearest drain with anti fatigue floor matting installed to reduce foot fatigue and prevent the bartender from getting trench foot standing in beer swill all night. They also prevent slips and falls.
A good carpet runner is suitable for most home bars, but if you lean towards wilder parties, rubber floor mats will last longer and are easier to clean. Rubber mats also provide superior electrical safety.

Anti-Fatigue Bar Floor Mats

Proper Wet Bar Design

anatomy of a wet bar

EHBP-03 Keg Box Wet Bar

Our plan sets detail these wet bar features and make it easy and affordable for the weekend do it yourself builder.

Current wet bar models:

EHBP-03 Straight Bar Design
EHBP-04 L-Shaped Bar Design
EHBP-09 45 degree corner Bar Design

Each of these wet bar plans are designed to accommodate a sink, plumbing and many key design features to contain and control spills. They also include plans for building your own integrated kegerator and CO2 charged beer tapper system that will keep your tap beer fresh for weeks. We also include the EHBP-11 Back Bar Cabinet to compliment your wet bar and accommodate your liquor and glassware supply.

What are Dry Bars?

Our definition of a dry bar is basically a standard beer / soda serving bar. Any of our wet bar designs could be used as a juice bar too. We have several models to serve as dry bars, they include:
EHBP-01 Straight Standard Bar
EHBP-02 L-shaped Standard Bar
EHBP-05 Portable Tailgate Bar
Keep in mind, these so called "dry" models can also serve as wet bars and include beer / cocktail prep gutters to contain spills.

Of course you can also look at an establishment itself as "wet" or "dry" depending upon whether or not they sell or dispense adult beverages.

Oh, and one small inaccuracy in the dictionary definition of wet bar, it does not require alcoholic drinks. In fact, we know of many folks who run a home bar but mix only non alcoholic drinks. In that case, you might call it a wet bar that's gone dry. Wet or dry it's all the same to me.

Faux Wet Bars:

Free plans and articles are fine, but a proven plan can make short order of your project. We've reviewed other bar related sites and found most lack true wet bar details and adequate spill containment and never any mention of electrical safety.

So stop guessing and do it right the first time,  get started building your bar today!

Just for scrolling way down here, you can get our free bar plans sample.

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Wet Bar Sinks

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  One Response to “Wet Bar vs. Dry Bar”

  1. I’ve seen some so called “wet bar” designs offered online, but they are hardly to be considered a wet bar. home wet bar is probably the funiest example, just a box and a top.

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