Retro Style for Your Bar Cart

Class never goes out of style. That’s particularly evident in Pardee Homes’ new neighborhood of Escala, which honors the sophisticated, urban mid-century modern design movement. In celebration of these new homes and classic style, let’s take a closer look at a piece that no mid-century modern home would be complete without, the bar cart!

Origins of the bar cart date back to the 1930s. Prohibition had just ended, and Americans were finding new ways to enjoy their newfound freedom. For cocktail parties, homemakers wheeled a fully stocked cart through the party, serving drinks to guests.

For the next few decades, the bar cart was a staple at festive soirees, until the 1970s, when homes began featuring large, built-in bars. Now, mid-century modern style is enjoying a resurgence, and the bar cart is being rediscovered as well.

Consider channeling a cool ’60s vibe with your own bar cart. It’s easy to get one into party shape, and your guests are bound to love it. Here are some bar cart basics to get started.


This is the most obvious bar cart component. Stock up on mixers like juices, club soda, tonic water, simple syrup, grenadine, triple sec and bitters, and with a selection of vodka, gin, rum, tequila and whiskey you’ll be able to make a number of classic cocktails. Remember olives and maraschino cherries to garnish. Here’s a list of retro drink recipes from the Cooking Channel, sure to come in handy.

Looking for a non-alcoholic, but on-trend approach? No worries! Stock your bar cart with classic sodas! Tab, Fresca and RC Cola are a few from the era that are still available today. You can also help throw your bar cart back in time by decorating it with vintage bottles of Coca-Cola, 7up, Nehi or other classic drinks.


Two things are essential: a shaker and an ice container with tongs. You also may want to add a bar spoon, a jigger and a muddler to your bar cart stock items. Crate and Barrel has a really great selection.


Classic cocktails deserve proper glassware. If you’re in search of inspiration for the perfect glass for your perfect drink, check out The Hour.

Non-beverage uses for your bar cart

The bar cart is such a beautiful piece for the home, and it certainly isn’t limited to housing cocktail ingredients. Decorate it with flowers; create a coffee bar; or use it to set up your desserts and sweets for a party.  Bar carts will work in many rooms in your home, and can even be used as a chic bedside table, media stand or stylish drop zone storage.

Find the perfect mid-century modern home to complement your bar cart in our new neighborhood of Escala at Inspirada in Henderson, NV. Connect with a New Home Specialist here.

Inland Empire 951-298-9675
San Diego 619-727-6105
Las Vegas 702-337-2753
Los Angeles/Ventura 661-713-1996




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