Designing an outdoor kitchen

15 July, 2014

Summer is the time for gathering outside. Whether it is a family barbecue, wine tasting al fresco or outdoor birthday bash, having the ability to cook and prepare food in your outdoor living space is always an added bonus. Outdoor kitchens are all the rage, as they allow for quick and easy entertaining. No longer do you have to worry about setting out your most expensive crystal and china for a dinner party indoors. Instead, you can prepare and serve an entire meal right from your elegant outdoor dining sets!

Working with professionals
When entering into the process of designing your new outdoor kitchen, it is important to consult with an appropriate landscape architect, designer and building contractor. As you assemble your team, you will want look up not only pictures of their past work, but also testimonies from those who have worked with them before. This group of experts will help with everything from the design process, to dealing with building permits and project management to make sure everything is done legally and on time.

Designing the space
One of the most important considerations when you start is to think of what appliances you would like to have in your new space. A grill is the most common outdoor cooking appliance, but there are many more options the avid gourmand may consider. For example, a custom-built wood-burning pizza oven is perfect for those with a hankering for fresh, Neapolitan pizza. Meanwhile, a smoker is ideal for those who often host barbecues. Think about the kind of food you most enjoy making and eating when deciding what kind of appliances to build into your outdoor kitchen.

Seating everyone
The icing on the cake is making sure there is enough comfortable seating for any guests you may have. After all, cooking food outdoors is pointless unless there is somewhere to enjoy it! Consider some patio bistro sets along with your formal full-sized dining table to give your guests options. In addition, always try to orient your seating to take advantage of your backyard's view. Beach houses especially benefit from an outdoor kitchen as a place for clambakes and lobster boils. Bar stools facing the ocean are perfect for these kinds of environments.

No matter how you choose to set up your outdoor kitchen, make sure it not only operates as a functional space, but also demonstrates your personal flair.