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The Al Fresco Bar: A Summer Must-Have
Now that the warm weather has finally arrived, you can turn your attention to preparing for the most important part of summer: outdoor entertaining. Of course, setting up the patio furniture, cleaning the backyard and scrubbing the dock may all be on your spring clean-up list, but we can't forget the ever-important preparation of the outdoor bar.
An outdoor bar can range from something as simple as a small side table with some great galvanized steel buckets for ice and drinks to a full-fledged built-in bar with ice maker, wine fridge and every other amenity under the sun.
Regardless of what your outdoor bar may include, upgrade your entertaining this summer with some great new accessories that are sure to add extra sparkle to your cocktails and make your al fresco bar the coolest on the block.
My two personal favourites include a designer cocktail table and some clever ice accessories for everyday use.
The Cool Bar, available at Costco, has one of the most important features you should look for in any entertaining piece: multifunctionalism. Having a single element that can serve several purposes is key to efficient entertaining and this product fits the bill. Think cocktail table and beverage cooler rolled into one; plus it looks great whether in use or not.
Since we know the summer will eventually end, usually too soon, the Cool Bar can be easily hosed off and stored in the garage until the warm weather finally returns.
Cool Jewels & Cool Shooters, meanwhile, are fun and inexpensive products from the funky shopping and party-supply site Fred (www.worldwidefred.com These food-grade ice trays create striking jewel-shaped ice cubes, perfect for making that Mojito stand out from the rest, while the ice shooter moulds are simple to use and can be kept in the freezer, ready for when the impromptu rounds of shooters begin.