Deck Design: 5 Essential Elements for an Outdoor Kitchen
An outdoor living space is not complete without cedar decking and an outdoor kitchen, the perfect playroom for your home’s grill master. By adding a few kitchen elements to decking, Portland, Oregon homeowners can redefine the whole concept of backyard living and get the most out of the summer’s long daylight hours. When considering adding kitchen elements to decking materials, Portland residents should think long-term, both about the city’s zoning and permit laws for the neighborhood and about creating a space that will remain useful through the years.
The grill is the king of the outdoor kitchen and comes in a variety of sizes and design options to suit your family and entertainment needs. When placing a grill on cedar decking, consider the type of protection you will need to prevent burning the structure with grease drippings or ashes. The best type of grill to use depends on your preference between gas and charcoal, the quantity of food you expect to cook and the other ways you plan to use your outdoor kitchen. Grills can come with side burners, rotisseries, ovens and the ability to smoke meats. Choose a grill that won’t impact your decking materials. Portland is famous for its rain, so it is also important to make sure your grill can survive the outdoor elements, and that it’s storable for when the Pacific Northwest winter hits.
2. Food Preparation Area
Whether you use a small, portable island or build counters onto your decking, Portland, Oregon outdoor kitchens need a space for preparing food. A food preparation area will allow you to prepare the food you want to grill without making frequent trips to your home’s kitchen. It will also allow you have a platter ready for the cooked food, provide a place for your BBQ sauces other than your pocket and give you a convenient spot to hold your long grilling utensils. If you want to build a permanent food preparation area or counter space, consider adding a canopy to your cedar decking for protection from the elements and so you can work in your outdoor kitchen comfortably rain or shine.
3. Storage Space
The storage space in your home may already be a priceless commodity, so including additional storage in your outdoor kitchen can provide you with a designated area for your grilling tools that is convenient and out of the way. Cabinets can provide an attractive finish to your cedar decking, but you must install them in such a way that keeps pests out and protects their contents from the weather. When considering the best storage and food preparation spaces for your decking materials, Portland contractors can provide expert guidance and help you choose a product that is durable, easy to clean and maintain and can withstand high heat or the wet Northwest winters.
As you plan the design of your storage space, consider adding a section for utensils, the propane tank, a garbage can, spices, serving platters, grill-friendly pots and pans, plates and cups. A refrigerator is also a popular option to include in outdoor kitchen storage. When adding such an appliance to decking, Portland, Oregon homeowners usually opt for miniature refrigerators and a separate ice-making unit.
4. Sink for Cleanup
Avoid bringing the mess inside your home by installing a stainless steel sink in your outdoor kitchen. Sinks are functional for the preparation of food and cleanup, and can assist you with small gardening tasks. Incorporating a sink also allows you to mingle with your guests as you prepare your food without having to leave a conversation to tend to cleaning duties. Consider adding a sink as part of an island near your grill or build it into the counter space.
5. Dining Area
Round out the outdoor kitchen on your cedar decking with the addition of a dining area. The best dining area is on level ground and close to the kitchen area, but far enough away to avoid the grill’s smoke. If you are concerned about the smoke from your grill bothering guests, consider installing an exhaust system. Alternatively, you can choose a scenic spot in your yard for outdoor dining furniture. When purchasing outdoor dining furniture, be sure to choose a weather-resistant set.
Enjoy all that summer offers by adding an outdoor kitchen to your home. If you are considering a new cedar decking addition to your home, this is the perfect time to create a completely new room.