Get the Most Out of Your Outdoor Kitchen
If you’re like many of us, there are plenty of things left on that summer to do list. Somehow, time has sped by faster than usual. Even with less opportunities to travel and more time in our homes, one of our favorite spaces has still been left underused: the outdoor kitchen.
An outdoor kitchen fully merges food preparation and mealtime in the most idyllic setting with plenty of space. Even indoor kitchens with an open concept layout simply can’t compare to the wide open feel an outdoor kitchen provides. As the chef, you feel a part of the party, rather than hidden away as you prepare each dish. Not only that, we love how an outdoor kitchen creates the most ideal restaurant patio vibe in the comfort of our homes. But in order to create that perfect dining out feel, follow these three steps:
First thing’s first: properly ventilate.
Yes, you read that right. If you have more than a freestanding grille in your backyard, you’ll need to take some extra steps to ensure cooking grease, excess smoke, and heat don’t damage your beautiful outdoor kitchen. Yes, you are out in the open air, but those damaging elements can – and will – wreak havoc without the proper care. We recommend placing a set of vents on two sides of your grille and prep area. The vent location itself will depend on the kitchen’s shape and size. In addition to these side vents, be sure to install a vent hood. Keep in mind, this outdoor hood will be a bit bigger than your indoor range. Aim for six extra inches on each side of the range or grille.
Then, focus on ongoing climate control.
While we can’t install air conditioning, an outdoor fan is the next best thing to keep you and all your guests happy from preparation to after-party. Not only will it provide a cool breeze on the hottest August afternoons, it will support your ventilation system and keep the bugs away. With plenty of options to choose from, ranging from fully installed ceiling fans and wall-mounted fans to smaller, more mobile pedestal fans, you can control your setting to suit the time of year and weather conditions.
Lastly, protect your outdoor kitchen for years of kitchen entertaining.
Without walls to protect your gorgeous granite countertops and stainless-steel sink from the elements, you’ll want to invest in a reliable removable cover. While not necessary every single day of the year, it’s important to cover in the off-season and in any case of inclement weather. Luckily, there are many cover options to choose from. And, there are quite a few companies that specialize in custom covers, so don’t worry if your outdoor kitchen is anything but standard.
If you’re lucky enough to have an outdoor kitchen, it’s about time you use it. Because, soon enough, we’ll be back to winter…really stuck indoors. Let’s commit these last months of the summer to creating a backyard dining paradise. With these three steps, you’ll be ready to create the outdoor kitchen of your dreams.
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