Planning the Perfect Outdoor Kitchen
An outdoor kitchen enhances the ambiance and provides functional features in an outdoor living space. It’s an essential must-have for the Long Island homeowners who want to create a beautiful space for family gatherings and social parties. Similar to an indoor kitchen, designing one that’s perfect for you takes careful planning.
Quality Grill / Built-in Grill
The right kind of grill can propel it from mere necessity to become a magnificent centerpiece in your outdoor kitchen. Start with function by picking out the right for your cooking style. Are you in and out or do you prefer to test out different flavors and plan on cooking different textures (e.g. fish). Perhaps you enjoy sauces. Then, consider the range of people that you’ll be cooking for (or with!). All of these will lead you to the perfect grill that has all the features you need without any unnecessary fuss. For style, the perfect grill will seamlessly blend into the elements and surroundings of your outdoor kitchen. As for placement, it's best in a spot in which the cook is not isolated from the guests.
An Area for Dining
When the weather permits, eating in a natural setting is as enjoyable as cooking your food outside. Therefore, you want to set up a place where you, your family, and guests can sit down and relish the freshly cooked entrees. What kind of area could serve as a dining space? You can be creative and create an island, a bar top, or a traditional dining space on a deck or patio nearby. When the weather doesn’t permit outdoor dining, your indoor dining areas should be easily accessible from this outdoor kitchen.
Outdoor storage is plentiful and it will be a waste if you don't consider setting up cabinets on which you can store kitchen and dining essentials. The general idea is that the more necessary items you can put in storage outside, things such as utensils, plates, cups, ingredients, the more time you’ll save and therefore the more enjoyable your cooking and dining experience will be. For material choices, there is retaining wall stone (which is a very common choice for outdoor kitchens) or outdoor kitchen cabinetry – or a combination of both. And don't forget to include a discreet location for a disposal area, as many tend to overlook.
Just like your indoor cooking experience with the stove, the grilling (or frying, or smoking, etc.) area needs counter space. Create plenty of space on the sides and around the grilling area for chopping up and preparing the cooked food, setting serving plates, tossing salad, and for setting down your glass of wine or beer. Extend the counters for a bar area to enjoy cooking with company.
Electricity and Plumbing
Connecting your outdoor kitchen to electricity plumbing is a definite must. Consider the benefits of being able to wash your hands in an outdoor sink or being able to plug in your blender for a margarita. And of course, an outdoor refrigerator does wonders for extending convenience outside the four walls of your home.
Features and Enhancements
Complete your outdoor kitchen with some great bonus features that complement your general lifestyle. Consider a pizza oven, a nearby outdoor fireplace, wine cooler, beer tap, and anything else that would help you enjoy your outdoor living spaces!