Finally, the weather is turning and soon it will be time to head outdoors. So, if you'd like to turn the endless cold winter into an endless warm summer think about adding an outdoor kitchen to your home. Outdoor kitchens are not only growing in popularity, but in size, too. What used to be a picnic table and a charcoal grill has turned into a professionally designed kitchen complete with running water, refrigeration, a stove, an elaborate grill and a pizza oven. The only thing not included with outdoor kitchens these days is a private chef - although, some our clients have those, too!
Here are a few ingredients for cooking up the perfect outdoor kitchen:
1. Location - Choose a location off to one side of your patio so it doesn't block a view or the flow of traffic to the backyard. Take note of the prevailing wind and situate the grill so the smoke doesn't blow back into the house. If you have a choice between a sunny spot or a shady spot, choose the sunny spot and add an adjustable awning or pergola for shade. The warmth of the sun will extend the use of your outdoor kitchen into the Spring and Fall months.
2. Countertops - Choose materials that can withstand the sun and weather conditions -- like granite, light colored concrete (sun will fade dark colors), soapstone and marble. Sealing the countertops will help prevent staining. Avoid tile countertops as the grout will stain or mold and the tiles can pop due to winter frost.
3. Counter Base - Build your outdoor kitchen base using cement block, brick, pavers or stone and it will last a lifetime. Build it out of wood and it is apt to rot over time.
4. Appliances - The selection of outdoor grills, burners, refrigerators, sinks, pizza ovens and even dishwashers is endless. Whatever you choose make certain the appliance is specifically made for outdoor use. If your cooking area is close to the house or under a low roof you may consider a range hood to vent the smoke.
5. Lighting - Task lighting above the grill is a must. Some vent hoods include the lighting. Select lighting that is rated for wet conditions and don't forget the dimmers. Landscape and under counter lighting create a luxurious resort ambiance.
If you would like to explore the possibilities of adding an outdoor kitchen to your home give us a call at: 203-249-6854