You can enjoy the ambiance and natural beauty of the outdoors by extending your kitchen and dining areas outside. As an extension of indoor living spaces, outdoor kitchens are today used for much more than barbecues. Although the grill might still be the central fixture, most of us want the same conveniences we have indoors, if not more. With plenty of materials and innovative outdoor appliances to choose from, we are no longer confined to a few specific features. Today, custom outdoor kitchens can include fireplaces, smokers, roasting spits, side burners, pizza ovens, warming drawers, and wet bars. However, creating an aesthetically appealing, functional, and safe outdoor kitchen involves careful planning and effort. Here are some important factors to consider:
It’s always important to think about the area’s intended purpose. Whether your plan to use your outdoor kitchen for dinner parties, lounging, eating, relaxing, or you want it near a pool, you can only determine the portion to focus on once you’ve figured out the primary function. You can then choose the must-have features for each area.
It’s imperative that you determine which items are necessary. Standard features include a grill or gas cooktop, cabinets, countertops, sink, compact refrigerator, and dining space. However, you can opt for extras like a pizza oven or bar depending on your budget, needs, and preferences. Honing in on the main features helps in determining the location and layout of your outdoor kitchen. For instance, the size and positioning of your selected grill or cooktop might affect your spatial and ventilation requirements.
For the ultimate outdoor cooking experience, consider quality kitchen appliances like the Twin Eagles grill. Lighting is another important feature, one that must support the kitchen’s functionality. Although the ambiance is a major factor, safety should be your priority when deciding the type of lighting to use. Main activity areas such as the cooking area and pathways require a lot of light. On the other hand, lounges and dining areas need adjustable lighting.
Utility requirements and climate considerations are important details to work out before you decide the location of your outdoor kitchen. You may have to direct natural gas, electric, and water lines from the main home. Since they are usually subject to local code regulations, you should think about how and where you will apply these utilities. Apart from providing easy access to your existing service lines, situating your outdoor kitchen near the main house makes transportation a lot easier. When choosing the location, make sure you consider the sun, wind, rain, and access to amenities like a pool or lawn.
You’ll need to integrate the kitchen’s features into a practical and appealing design, one that complements the selected location. The best shape and size for your outdoor kitchen might depend on your budget, the amount of space available, and the selected features. In general, well-designed outdoor kitchens have four main areas, and these are the preparation, cooking, serving and cleaning areas.
Same as layout, you should not choose your materials based on aesthetics. Make sure you select durable, slip-resistant, heat-resistant, weatherproof, and easy to clean materials that will merge in a complementing and practical manner. Look for functional materials that come in a variety of colors, textures, and sizes. Remember, the benefits offered may vary depending on geographic location.
For instance, in addition to providing maximum slip-resistance, concrete pavers and retaining walls have a high load-bearing and low water-absorption capacity. They are, therefore, ideal for wet areas. Likewise, outdoor kitchen countertops are available in various designs. However, in addition to their aesthetic value, you should choose countertop materials that are resistant to water, extreme weather, scratches, and stains. Look into bluestone, granite, and polished concrete, and confer with your contractor about which options are less prone to grease and oil absorption.
You can transform your yard into a lively entertainment area for all kinds of occasions by adding an outdoor kitchen. Although you might be able to create the perfect outdoor kitchen by yourself, hiring a trained professional is the first step to ensuring you end up with a great addition.