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Saturday Project

Saturday | 6 March 2021 | La Quinta, California: No one is going to be sympathetic to my ridiculous booze/glassware storage dilemna, since we are in the middle (or possibly near the end?) of a pandemic. First World Problem. Think of this as a six-month-later "moving to a new house" story.

As long-time Readers will remember, this house is large, but it is odd. Only 15 years old, it has several poorly-designed features. Most notable are the crappy cabinets. Serious junk. For example, the drawer next to the cooktop isn't deep enough to hold a ladle.

Another thing lacking in the house is any sort of utility closet. No place to house a vacuum cleaner. Ironing board. Broom. On my walks, I've noticed (through open garage doors) most people in this development store these items in their garage, so figure our floorplan isn't the only one missing a utility closet. Luckily, we do have a coat closet in the entry hall... and who the heck wears a coat in the desert? So we have taken-over the guest coat closet (oh, also, we have no guests!) as our utility closet/storage room.

But one thing this house has is a bar. A full sit-down bar, with room enough for four bar stools. The bar has a sink, and a mini-fridge/ice-maker. No where in this large bar area is there room for storage. Glasses. Shakers. You know, bar stuff. Four useless shallow drawers, and only enough room under the sink for a little trash can and bar towels. Who designed this bar?

We keep a tray on the bartop, with bottles of the usual stuff: gin, vodka, whiskeys, rum, etc., and another tray for a few glasses.


Wine was stored in the wine rack (pictured above) just outside the bar area, in the entry hall. We bought this wine rack in Taiwan in 1988. It is a piece of junk as it won't hold wine! After two bottles of wine are stacked in a slot in the rack, they begin to fall forward. A bottle of wine, hitting the tile floor (we live in earthquake country) would shatter upon impact. To remedy this issue, Dave wedges/stands a bottle of wine between the rows. Who designed a wine rack that won't hold wine? (Maybe the same person who designed the cabinetry in this house?)

So... wine was stashed in the "guest" closet... next to the vacuum and ironing board. Liquor was stored in the pantry. Additional stemware was stored in a kitchen cabinet. This discombobulated scenario was making me meshuga. We needed everything in one place. We needed organization.


A few months ago, we ordered the Marin Bar Cabinet from Crate & Barrel (less than the current price). It was delivered this morning - the delivery was very COVID-friendly as the cabinet was placed just inside the front door.

E V E R Y T H I N G - from all around the house - fit inside the new cabinet. All the booze. All the wine. All the mixers. Odd bottles of random spirits I keep for cooking.

Not all the glassware, but enough for daily use (if we ever have guests again). As you can see, this cabinet has racks for overhead hanging stemware. The chances of me hanging (nearly 40-year-old) Waterford crystal "bells" upside down in earthquake country are zero. Zero. As soon as I can locate our shelf-liner, the wine glasses and champagne flutes will be turned upside-down. Yes, I know crystal is never supposed to be stored upside down... but between the earth moving and all the desert dust, these glasses will be stored upside down. Get. Over. It.

By moving much of the crystal (plus beer mugs and my mom's pink coupes) to the new cabinet, an entire shelf was now free in the kitchen.

We moved the china (from storage boxes) so we can use it any time we please... instead of dragging it out of storage containers for special occasions.

Later, I "styled" the cabinet, by moving the fauxorchid from another part of the house to the entry hall. Not going to keep things this way. I may be searching for a tall lamp to serve as a night-light? No rush. Something tall, for sure. Any ideas?

The "trinket dish" from the Paris Ritz was usually used to hold linen guest towels in our powder room... when we used to have guests. (No, not stolen from the hotel. We have never stayed at The Ritz. It was a gift.)

After all the booze-moving, crystal-moving, and china-moving, an icy-cold martini poolside was my perfect reward.

White Rose potatoes... once again tossed in duck fat, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper... and roasted to perfection.

Served with a chicken breast (a breast! It's been forever since I have cooked a chicken breast) stuffed with spinach, roasted red pepper and more of that dang sliced jalapeno jack cheese, topped with garlic bread crumbs and baked. No recipe. Sorry. Used more of the CSA micro-greens as a garnish.

Must. Garnish.

The booze (Costo often has huge handles of Tanqueray Gin for $18 - no kidding - so we stock-up) is out of the pantry. The wine is out of the hall closet. The awful useless wine rack from Taiwan is in the garage (until further notice). The china is in the kitchen cupboard. A place for everything and everything in its place.

Until my next update, I remain, your organized correspondent.

3 thoughts

  1. Looking good Terry, your trinket dish from the Ritz looks like it was an ashtray.
    I have followed your organization tips and now have inventory lists on my freezers. Thankyou so much for that. Cheers

  2. The dish was most definitely an ashtray, but is now sold as a trinket dish – as smoking is no longer allowed in the bar!

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