The basic, humble backyard Aussie barbie has come a long way from a stack of bricks and a big metal plate. Outdoor kitchens have transformed the way we eat and entertain.
Much like an indoor kitchen renovation, the cost of building an outdoor kitchen can vary greatly depending on the materials and appliances chosen.
You want your outdoor kitchen to weather everything the elements can throw at it so consider constructing and furnishing your al fresco masterpiece from products rated for external use, such as brick, non-porous stone, concrete, stainless steel, hardwood and marine-grade timber.
Adam Roberts, co-founder and general manager of Australasian Barbecue Alliance (www.ausbbq.com.au) really knows his way around a grill.
Adam says his essential inclusions for creating an outdoor kitchen is having flexibility of a large open space with moveable benches and a section with a gravel base for the flooring.
“This enables the free movement of additional portable BBQ’s which run on solid fuels such as charcoal briquets or wood pieces and the gravel base helps contain any mess and prevents damage to other hard floorings,” says Adam. “The outdoor kitchen doesn’t need to be full of fixed stainless or stone benches with fully plumbed sinks or fridges. A solid shade structure to protect you from the summer heat or the rain is essential but under that, the space should be multipurpose and flexible.”
“Moveable tables, benches, a hard floor and at least one area for a gravel pit to safely run your numerous charcoal smokers and grills is essential,” he adds. “Gone are the days of just having the one gas grill, these days it’s very common to have a smoker, charcoal grill, pizza oven and a flat plate gas grill all in the one flexible space to open up options you have to cook up the perfect barbecue.”
Outdoor kitchens continue to grow in popularity due to their excellent social attributes.
“It’s way more sociable to cook in front of guests. Most indoor kitchens have limited seating space and are a bit tight to congregate in whilst the food is being prepared,” says Adam. “Cooking in the outdoor kitchen can be much more exciting, appropriate and communal, particularly with the prevalence of wood fuelled BBQ’s and smokers and a more flexible space to cook and socialise.”
Adam’s Top 5 essentials for the perfect outdoor kitchen:
– Non-fixed benches and tables
– Hot and cold-water tap
– Large shade structure
– A section of gravel flooring
– Close proximity to indoor kitchen
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