How much space between counter and bar?

Discussion in 'Home Bar' started by bossfan23, Feb 16, 2015.

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  1. bossfan23

    bossfan23 Initiate (0) Mar 26, 2012 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    Hey guys, I am in the process of renovating my basement. We are getting very close to putting in the cabinets for our wet bar (I already have the bar itself). My question is, what is an ideal amount of space to have between the bar and the counters/cabinets behind the bar? In other words, the walkway. I have read online that a lot of people seem to have 4 feet, though that might be more standard for a kitchen than a wet bar. I am thinking of going 3 feet, but I'm not sure. Anyone have experience with this? I'm in the process of ordering tile floor, so I need to make a decision. I want a decent amount of space, but also not too much as it will start pushing the bar area over into the living room area where the TV is (see pic below).

    Here is a photo so you can kind of see what it is going to look like from the contractors plans. This is the best I have, but the bar is back in the distance. On the back wall with the cabinets will be a sink in the counter, as well as a mini fridge tucked under the cabinets in the back right.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Kadonny

    Kadonny Meyvn (1,218) Sep 5, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    Cool rendering. I have 4 foot on mine and think it's the perfect width. You want it "cozy" enough to use the back bar/cabinets without walking too far, but you want room enough for moving around and for 2 people back there if you ever want to.
     
  3. tommyguz

    tommyguz Meyvn (1,009) May 14, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I will have to measure mine, we put the bar in, in November, but I forget the space between.
     
    FXCREW likes this.
  4. mjach

    mjach Initiate (0) Jan 21, 2011 Colorado

    Just curious, is it possible to split the difference and go with 3'6"? Also, I'm curious which rendering program that is.
     
  5. mikehartigan

    mikehartigan Aspirant (295) Apr 9, 2007 Illinois

    The position of my bar was dictated by the range I installed behind it. Immediately in front of the range, I've got 18" of clearance. But that's not a heavily used area. For the main portion, my back bar is deep enough for three liquor shelves, or 18". That part of the bar has 30" of clearance - plenty of room for a home bar, IMO. Keep in mind that you're not a commercial establishment with two or three bartenders bumping into each other, so a little tight is ok if it would benefit the rest of the room.
     
  6. tommyguz

    tommyguz Meyvn (1,009) May 14, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    So my bar is set up accordingly:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The overhang is 18 inches, the bar behind is 18 inches. The back counter is 12 and the sink area is 24 (I think without running back down to measure again, as I forgot). That leaves us 34 inches between the back and front and 6 feet long from opening to sink. It is plenty of space for one or two people behind it.
     
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  7. bossfan23

    bossfan23 Initiate (0) Mar 26, 2012 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    That is definitely possible, and something I am considering. Right now I am planning on the tile going out 8 feet from the bar. It would break down as:

    -3 feet between counter and bar
    -2 feet under the bar itself
    -3 feet for the stools

    I could slide the bar out a bit and make it

    -3 1/2 feet between counter and bar
    -3 2 feet under the bar
    -2 1/2 feet for the stools

    As far as the rendering program, I'm not sure. It's something the contractor we hired used when we first designed the layout/blueprint plans for the basement renovation.
     
  8. Kadonny

    Kadonny Meyvn (1,218) Sep 5, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    3 feet for the stools is minimum. Remember people will slide them back to get on/off and you will have a bar overhang in the front which cuts down on the actual usable stool space.

    I can measure mine tonight, I think it's set up perfectly.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. tommyguz

    tommyguz Meyvn (1,009) May 14, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    Nice set up, plus Nice Yuengling swag.
     
  10. Kadonny

    Kadonny Meyvn (1,218) Sep 5, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    Thanks, the Yuengling tap is long gone, I have a double set up now.
     
  11. tommyguz

    tommyguz Meyvn (1,009) May 14, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I didn't even notice the tap handle, just the mirror and the tacker
     
    Kadonny likes this.
  12. Kadonny

    Kadonny Meyvn (1,218) Sep 5, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    Ok @bossfan23 , here are my measurements. In looking at your rendering, you do show a back bar which I don't see in your calculations above unless going 8 ft. from the bar meant from the back bar.

    Back bar with wet sink: 20 inches deep
    Space between back bar and main bar: 48"
    Main bar depth: 24"
    Space for chairs/stools that is tiled beyond main bar: 42"

    Total tiled area from wall: Just over 11 feet (134")

    Now granted my space between my back bar and front bar is a lot, but I have a door leading into my wine/beer cellar that is accessed from behind the bar (see above pics) so I wanted more room. In looking at it, I would think 3 ft. would suffice for a normal back bar front bar scenario like yours (per your rendering pic). So I think you need almost 10 ft. of tile away from the wall if you have a back bar, if not then the 8 ft. might be ok, 8.5 would be better.
     
  13. bossfan23

    bossfan23 Initiate (0) Mar 26, 2012 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    Thanks for the measurements, that helps out a lot.

    Yeah, the 8 feet measurement I mentioned is from the front of the cabinets/back bar on the back wall (where the sink will be) out to the edge of the tile behind where the stools will sit. I will not have tile under the cabinets, so technically the 8 feet of tile will go out 10 feet from the back wall (since the cabinets/counter are 2 feet deep on the wall).

    Also, my main bar (which was built by my grandpa in the 1950s, I'll post a pic when finished) doesn't have an overhang, so that might help a bit with space.
     
  14. bossfan23

    bossfan23 Initiate (0) Mar 26, 2012 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    BTW, I think I am going to add a kegerator to the set up. I know very little about running a tap system myself, so i have a lot to learn. I'll have a few feet at the end of the backbar (left side) where the cabinets end. Plan on sitting one there in line with the cabinets on the back wall. I will add some tile underneath it for it to sit upon (the tile company already told me they would add a 2x2 square there for it at no charge). Any recommendations? I hear Marvel is very good. Summit possibly?

    Your set up looks amazing!
     
  15. bossfan23

    bossfan23 Initiate (0) Mar 26, 2012 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    Crudely drawn, but this is the general layout from a birds eye view with the original tile layout i listed, plus the extra 2x2 square under kegerator. No tile under cabinets. 8x8 main tile layout will start at the front of the cabinets. So we will have 3 feet between counter and main bar. 2 feet under main bar. 3 feet for stools.
    [​IMG]
     
  16. Kadonny

    Kadonny Meyvn (1,218) Sep 5, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I think that's a pretty solid layout. Based on the above drawing, what is to the left of the bar? My only thought is you may want to extend the tile to the left of the bar a couple of feet. If you have carpet, do you really want carpet butting up against the left side of the bar? You almost want a tile "runway" the be able to walk from behind the bar to the stool area. Just a thought.

    Kegerators, I only had experience with one, and it was a bad experience with a supposedly "quality" kegerator. After that bad experience, I went a refrigerator under the bar option and cut holes for my lines and put my tap on top of the bar. Been that way for 7 years now and I'm happy as a clam. So bottom line, I have no advice on kegerators, sorry.
     
  17. paulys55

    paulys55 Zealot (582) Aug 2, 2010 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I want to know where i can get those levitating billiard balls.
     
  18. bossfan23

    bossfan23 Initiate (0) Mar 26, 2012 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    Yeah, the main bar isn't actually as wide as the tile as in the drawing. My fault. There will be at least 2 feet to the side of the bar to the left. Where the tile ends, it is carpet and then a hallway starts.
     
    Kadonny likes this.
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