Wine Bar and Large Storage
Had a 21 foot long blank boring wall in the living room, and needed storage, display space, storage, something interesting to look at in the room, some more storage, and I got a wine-bar out of the deal.
The cabinets are IKEA and they were very straight, very fast to assemble and install, and the quality is sofar great. The faces are all solid beechwood, which has a great color and grain and complements the (fake) maple floor. The frames are MDF, but you don’t see any of them with the doors closed.
I put in LED lighting in some backlighting applications in the glass-faced cabinets and for background over the winebar and open glass shelf section. The wall was poorly insulated so I installed 1/2″ EPS sheets over the wall before installing the cabinets or hardibacker for all the tile, and the extra insulation made a difference in the room. Have knockouts market in each pantry with 120V outlet behind it if it was ever wanted.
The arch over the wine bar has a maple trim strip, and that arch has many hours of wet saw work in it. All the tile is dry stacked (no mortar joints). It took some doing to toe-in angle the small cabinets on the winebar — did it with maple bevel shims, and a lot of trial and error to get the stock hinges to effectively close 25 degrees further than designed.
The wine fridge is installed in an open slot for air circulation — true built-in wine fridges are 5X more expensive than this one was (on sale at Lowe’s), so I didn’t mind having to dress up its hole a little (plus I can install any similarly priced and sized unit in this hole when this one dies).
Bottom line: wife loves it, I love it, guests jaws drop when they see it, we use it a lot, and even though we sacrified 25 inches of room depth, the room actually feels larger. By the way, cost-wise it wasn’t bad — $4400 in cabinets, side panels, and LED lighting from IKEA and maybe another $800 in tile, concrete materials, glass shelves, birch plywood, crown molding, maple end strip stock, and electrical, For 21 feet that’s really cheap ($250/L-ft), and it looks totally custom. We were getting quotes around $12,000 from several “living room” cabinet houses for stock stuff uninstalled. And it was a lot of fun.
TIP: “kitchen” cabinets are far cheaper than “living room” or “office” cabinetry, so take advantage of the stock kitchen cabinet volume pricing structure. Also IKEA’s web site has excellent and accurate detail drawings, so I was able to CAD-up the whole thing within 1/8″ of final. Took 5 months start to finish mainly just working weekends and entirely by myself and that includes the new kitchen floor up to the wine bar, and making the concrete countertops from scratch.
If interested in the concrete countertops, start with Cheng’s book and video.