Tips for Designing a Perfect Outdoor Kitchen
An outdoor kitchen doesn’t need to be huge, but if carefully designed you can have an efficient fun space for the grillmeister to work while still being part of the party. Here are a few tips to get started:
Location. It is generally a good idea to locate your outdoor kitchen near the main house, and even better, near the main kitchen. This makes it easy to carry food and other materials in and out, and allows for some use of the main kitchen as needed (and makes those inevitable trips back after the one thing you forgot a lot shorter). Other factors to consider are landscape features such as patios, decks, lawn, or pool. Sun, shade, and wind may also be issues to think about.
Function. Consider exactly how you will use the area. What appliances are must haves? How much prep will be done in the main kitchen, and how much outside? Where will your guests be while you are cooking? When eating?
Include a bar top. Ever notice how people like to hang around the grill and watch? Adding a bar top that faces the cook gives guest a place to watch and enjoy themselves while staying out of the cooking space.
Shelter. Let’s face it, those summer days are great, but this is Michigan.Having some shelter, whether from the sun, wind, or rain, can greatly increase the usefulness of an outdoor cooking space. Infrared heaters can extend the season well into autumn, and a ceiling fan can keep everyone cool when it gets a bit too warm.
Place the beverage cooler and beer or water at the end of the bar. That way your guests can help themselves and frees you up to concentrate on the cooking.
Lounge space. Having seating on a nearby patio or deck gives guests another place to hang out while waiting for the barbecue or to relax after dinner.
Fireplace. While a TV is a must for many people, you may want to consider a fireplace or fire pit. Whether it is roasting hotdogs and marshmallows, or just enjoying good conversation, nothing beats a good fire on a cool autumn night.
About Bruce BlokBruce is co-owner of Blok Builders Inc., a family owned business focused on providing the ultimate project experience through personal involvement, communication, and dedication to quality and value.
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