With temperatures rising and another hot summer ahead, the thought of being stuck inside cooking over a hot stove is far from appealing.
That’s where creating a functional and stylish outdoor kitchen can change how you spend mealtime at your home or the cottage, says Peter Briese, owner of Muskoka BBQ & Outdoor Kitchen Centre.
“Whether you’re looking to create a formal outdoor kitchen complete with a structure, counter space and refrigeration, or prefer to have a collection of different stand-alone cooking appliances, people want to create these areas where they can entertain and be outside.”
A great way to get exactly what you want, he notes, is with a custom layout designed by Muskoka BBQ and built using a welded frame construction.
“They are built with a welded frame that can be customized to each outdoor kitchen and your individual cooking, entertaining and storage needs,” says Peter. This system of outdoor kitchen offers a variety of customizable storage options, from doors and drawers to shelving.
The cutouts are all done to fit individually selected appliances, he adds. There are many options available for counters and cladding, using a durable product that’s meant to withstand whatever Mother Nature can throw at it.
A social affair
Cooking is typically a social affair, a great time to gather with friends and family.
That’s where the Evo Affinity 30G Cooktop would make for a fantastic addition to any outdoor kitchen. Designed for both built-in installation in outdoor kitchen counters or as a stand-alone cart, it is available in propane or natural gas. It features a 30-inch circular oil-seasoned cooking surface and two temperature zones, helping it avoid the hot spots and temperature problems traditional square griddles are prone to.
“You can grill, roast, toast, sear, stir fry, sauté — really the sky is the limit,” he says. It helps make cooking a social affair when you have your friends and families over. “It’s meant for entertaining, whether you’re cooking for two or 22.”
Be a pro at home
If grilling is more your style, you can’t go wrong with the Lynx brand of barbecues, such as their 42-inch Built-in Grill with Rotisserie.
“The technology of this grill was designed and implemented by edgy thinkers, determined to elevate the culinary arts no matter what’s being prepared — from traditional barbecue to luxurious recipes,” he says. “It’s not about glamour, it’s about cooking on a superior machine that seamlessly blends into an elegant outdoor room but performs on par with anything you’d find inside a professional kitchen.”
No summer barbecue is complete without an ice-cold beer, adds Peter, pointing to the Lynx 24-inch refrigerator with keg option as a great choice to top off your outdoor kitchen.
“The quality of the Lynx refrigeration stands out from the competition. Even on the hottest summer days, it’s going to keep the beer cold.”
Water accessMuskoka BBQ & Outdoor Kitchen Centre has a range of products on site at its Port Carling showroom, located on the Indian River in the middle of the big three lakes.
“We have some product on display so you can come up by boat and see what we have to offer. It’s a unique way for cottagers to see what options are available.”
Avoid the cold shoulder
Just because summer will eventually end, that doesn’t mean your outdoor cooking and entertaining has to, he says. Bromic heating appliances offer a great solution to extending your season.
“They’re not as important in midsummer, but people want to extend their outdoor entertaining to the shoulder seasons. They’re looking for great products to help keep them warm and outside,” he says.
“People simply enjoy being outside and they enjoy entertaining outside. Creating an outdoor kitchen and entertaining spaces is a great way to bring that cooking experience and that entertaining outside.”
TEXT NIKKI COLE | PHOTOS ANDREW FEARMAN