What is an outdoor fling without some great homemade food and drink? We've endured months of cold and windy weather and soon we'll be planning our first spring garden gatherings with family and friends. Let's daydream a little about the loftier possibilities for entertaining outdoors with a look at some outdoor kitchen ideas to get you started for summer 2017.
Outdoor Kitchen with Overhead Patio
One of the great wish list ideas for an outdoor cooking/entertaining area is to have a patio space with a roof or overhang to shelter an outdoor kitchen which can be as simple or kitted out as you want. This feature is typically built off of homes that are constructed in stone, adobe or concrete, but may work well with a home that is shingled if designed to complement the architecture of the house.
Combination Outdoor Kitchen and Solarium Family Room
To make your outdoor kitchen multi-functional, you can build an outdoor entertainment area that incorporates a solarium for indoor family space that feels like outdoors. These can be constructed as a separate garden area or attached to a side of the home. You can cook, entertain or simply relax as three ‘walls’ will be open to nature. Sometimes these are done as half-walls with glass running up to the roof or half walls open to the air, or screened in to keep the insects out. With some comfy patio furniture, a stainless outdoor kitchen and a view of all that is beautiful around your home, you’ll find yourself getting reacquainted with the great outdoors without having to leave your house.
Poolside Cabana Kitchen
The most common style of outdoor kitchen is the poolside cabana kitchen, but this year they are trending with a twist. Instead of a simple tiki bar setup they are now larger, with a stove and/or barbeque built-in. Or you could include both - have your tiki bar as a walk-up to fetch drinks to take by the pool, and another area by the cooking stations where guests can take a seat with their drink and keep the cook company. Create a (civilised) party atmosphere with a sparkling stainless grill and sink with a bar and a few smart tables.
If you're seriously thinking of planning an outdoor kitchen, pay attention to the setup that any friends or neighbours may have and ask them what they would do over if they had the chance, or which features are must-haves. And get ready to become the most popular house on your street!