Want to offer your guests something more sophisticated than a barbeque this summer? Why not create a complete kitchen in your garden or yard?
Outdoor kitchens have been popular for over a decade in the USA and Australia, and they’ve finally made their way to British shores! We’ve seen increasing numbers of people opting for outdoor kitchens in Liverpool recently.
Here’s everything you need to know about them, and what you need to think about if you want to create one for yourself.
What is an outdoor kitchen?
An outdoor kitchen is exactly what its name suggests. It’s a kitchen in your backyard, with room for food preparation, cooking, eating, and in many cases, clearing up afterwards.
It’s a hugely convenient solution for summer entertaining, as it means you can still be part of the party while you’re preparing the food and serving your guests, without having to spend half your time inside, missing out on all the fun.
How do you plan an outdoor kitchen?
Outdoor kitchens do need a lot of planning. It’s important to make sure the layout works with, and makes the most of, the available space, so you’ll have to get your measurements 100 percent accurate before you start.
The most popular layouts are to arrange your fixtures and fittings in either an “L” or a “U” shape, to create the largest possible dining area. However, your own layout might have to be different, as it has to suit the size and shape of your garden or yard. You’ll also need to think about where your water, gas and electricity supplies are positioned, and how easily your appliances can be hooked up to them.
Which appliances and fixtures will you need?
This depends on the size of your garden or yard, and what you want to achieve. If you have plenty of space to work with, why not create an entire kitchen outdoors? Many people install the complete works in their gardens – hob, grill, oven, fridge and sink. Some even include preparation and storage solutions such as kitchen worktops, cupboards and drawers, for a truly convenient design.
However, if your backyard is smaller, you can still achieve great results by sticking to the basics, such as a simple outdoor grill and fridge. This means the majority of the space can be dedicated to dining.
How should the dining area be designed?
There are literally endless possibilities here. Again, it’s important to make the best use of the space. If you’re working with a small area, a simple island with a few bar stools around it can be a great solution – it’s intimate and relaxed, and the island can double up as an additional food preparation space. For larger gardens, you can opt for chic contemporary outdoor dining furniture, or choose a more casual “rustic” look with wooden tables and bench seating.
Remember to think about the weather!
Your outdoor kitchen will need to be hardwearing enough to withstand a wide variety of weather conditions. For a start, the entire space, including the dining area, will need to be tiled, paved or decked, to prevent it from turning into a muddy mess. Appliances should be made of a material like stainless steel which won’t rust, while outdoor kitchen worktops should be stone or granite to ensure they’re durable and weather-proof.
It’s also worth investing in a canopy which can quickly be pulled out to cover the entire area in case your guests fall foul of the traditional British weather!
We at HB Kitchens hope you enjoy your summer. If you’d like more ideas for creating a bespoke cooking, dining and entertaining space, please get in touch – we’re happy to introduce you to our custom fitted kitchens in Liverpool!