The minute it gets warmer, indoor spaces become replaced with our yards and balconies. Everyone wants to enjoy the pleasantly warm weather outside, and for many, this often means turning a corner of their outdoor space into a dedicated lounging spot. Some take it even further and build a whole outdoor kitchen.
If you don’t want to be cooped up inside your kitchen all summer where smells tend to stick longer, you too are probably considering the idea of creating an alfresco kitchen. Even though this may seem like an easy project at first, the minute you get down to business, you’ll quickly find it’s a complex project. Outside kitchens are nothing like indoor ones. They need to withstand a variety of outside factors in order to work seamlessly. With that being said, here are some suggestions to consider when creating a functional and attractive outdoor kitchen.
Select the Right Appliances
How functional your outdoor kitchen will be, depends on the appliances with which you outfit it. Some alfresco outdoor kitchens include only a grill. But with a grill, you can only whip up a limited number of meals. If you want to be able to experiment with a wide range of recipes, you may want to include a small oven as well. You can include additional appliances too, like for instance an outdoor fridge, a coffee maker. Because kitchen appliances can be expensive, be sure that you actually use all the things you invest in. When it comes to outdoor kitchen appliances, quality is more important than quantity.
Since your alfresco kitchen will be exposed to rain, sun, wind and varying temperatures, it’s essential to pick reliable and durable appliances. How suitable an appliance is for outdoor use depends on the material it’s made of. For instance, appliances made of stainless steel and ceramic are resistant to corrosion, UV rays, mould and damage from the ocean air. These materials are also easy to keep clean due to their smooth, non-porous surface. These kinds of weather-friendly appliances aren’t usually sold at stores selling home appliances. You will have an easier time finding them in stores specialized in equipment for alfresco outdoor kitchens.
The Addition of an Outdoor Sink Can Go a Long Way
No kitchen is complete without a sink. Not even an outdoor one. Not only does a sink help you clean up dishes, but it also enables you to wash your hands properly. And this is crucial for food safety, especially when handling raw meat. Depending on your needs and preferences, you can choose between a small sink for quick rinses or a double sink for more convenience. You can use one part of the double sink for dirty dishes and the other for washing vegetables. Of course, you will also need to connect the sink to the water supply and the waste drain. If you wonder how to hook up your sink to the water supply, there are usually two ways – connect the sink to a yard hose or if you don’t have one, to the indoor water supply. But in any case, it’s better to call a professional plumber to properly hook up your outdoor sink.
Pick Weather-Friendly Cabinetry
Every alfresco kitchen needs cabinets where you can store all your cooking tools, dishes and glassware, tablecloths and other common kitchen items. Just like outdoor kitchen appliances, outdoor cabinets also need to resist all kinds of weather conditions. But besides weather-friendly stainless-steel and ceramic, when it comes to outdoor cabinets there’s a wider range of materials to choose from. For instance, you can pick teak wall cabinets with a warm and rich texture and base cabinets with a sleek stone counter that’s easy to keep clean. If you want to create a uniform look, you can pick stainless-steel cabinets that will blend in with the appliances.
Set Up a Comfortable Dining Area
Once you prepare all the delicious food, you will need somewhere to eat, right? So, instead of going back indoor to enjoy your meals, a much more attractive option is to create an outdoor dining area too. Plus, an outdoor dining area is a great way to entertain guests in the summer. Start by picking out weather-friendly furniture that matches the style of the rest of your outdoor space. For instance, furniture made of wrought iron or rattan is a lovely option for a traditional or vintage-looking outdoor space. On the other hand, furniture made of teak, plastic or aluminium can blend in more modern spaces. And don’t forget to make the dining area comfortable too. If the furniture doesn’t include any cushioning, get yourself some cute seat pillows that will allow everyone to lean back and enjoy the good food and good company.