Monthly Archives: June 2013

What Are the Benefits of an Outside Grill Island?

So, you’re considering adding a grill island or kitchen island to your yard? Congratulations! A grill island is one of the best additions a homeowner can make to their property.

For anyone who loves spending time in their yard, a grill island is a wonderful addition. It allows you to use your yard like another room of your house. With a grill island you can turn any summer get-together into a party they’ll never forget. The island will give you buffet space, and a place for your guests to eat. You won’t have to rely on old picnic tables or unsteady lawn chairs. Your friends will be relaxing with you in the nerve center of your yard. And having them sit closer will give you plenty of time to talk to them as you cook up your latest creation.

But a grill island is practical as well as fun. It’s a great security feature for your grill. If your grill is kept outside, it’s always in danger. That’s because a regular grill is an unsecured grill. And an unsecured grill can be damaged by weather, or stolen. Creating a grill island attaches this crucial tool to your property. And a grill island gives you great storage space as well. It allows you to store awkward grill tools, bags of charcoal, lighter fluid, and other items safely. And that goes for your perishable grill essentials as well. With a grill island you have a refrigerator to store food before you grill it. A grill island can even help you keep beverages cool for your guests.

And grill islands don’t just allow you make the most of your property. They increase your property value as well. Using a great grill island as one of many features in your back yard can make your house look more like a resort than just a simple hang out destination. Prospective home owners can easily see how owning a house with a grill island will increase the function of their lives. And that appearance of function pays off. Home appraisers see an increase in a houses value with the addition of a grill island. In some cases, that increase can be as much as $18,000 for the overall value of the house.

With great function, great security, a great look, and great value, why wouldn’t you invest in a grill island?

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What’s the Best Equipment for My Grill Island?

The best type of equipment for you island depends on what you like to do best. Once you’ve invested in this great addition to your backyard, you’ll want to show it off as much as possible. So play to your strengths! Decide what events will feature your new island, and get the equipment that would work best.

Do you like to host backyard games, and cook burgers and dogs for your guests?

Then you’re going to love our side burners. These additions can give your grill as many gas boilers and grill space as you need. To make clean up a snap so you can get back in the game, check out one of the concealed trash bins. And don’t forget about our great ice bins. They will keep the cans ice cold while you show off your skills on the gridiron. Or, if your team is a big one, look into one of our Kegerators. These additions will allow you to keep a full keg of beer ice cold for you and your team.

Do you like to host outdoor parties with great spirits and great friends?

If you like to show off your taste in wine, look into one of our wine coolers. With a 3.1 Cubic Foot Capacity, you can allow your guests to sample a small vineyard without ever leaving the yard. Got a great margarita recipe? Show it off using our custom built Margarita Center, complete with customer blender and glasses. Want to show off your bartending skills? Our Outdoor Bar extension is ready to help you out. It incorporates all the holders needed to hold your drinks. And incorporates a bar sink for quick clean up. But if you prefer to bring the bar to your guests, you won’t have a problem. Check out our Cocktail Station. This moving bar has everything you’ll need to mix drinks on the go.

Do you want to show off your skill on the grill?

No matter what meal you’re cooking for, we’ve got you covered. Our Breakfast Club grill attachment comes with stainless steel side cooker and thermostat controlled griddle plate. To cook the perfect steak, you’ll need our searing station. It uses infrared heat to help you to lock in flavor without taking up too much space. And to turn every party into a pizza party, check out our custom-made Chicago Brick Oven. Homemade pizza never tasted so good.

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Gas, Electric, or Charcoal: Which is the Best for My New Island?

So you’ve decided to get a new grill island… and a new grill to go along with it. But what type of grill is best? Even after using a particular grill for years, you may be interested in seeing what else is out there. Each of the three grills types have their strengths. So let’s go over the difference between gas grills, electric grills, and charcoal grills.

Gas: Gas is a cleaner and more versatile heat. You can control the heat output of Gas far better than Electric or Charcoal. And you can funnel Gas through a number of different accessories, like side burners and griddles. Gas heat is stronger than Electric heat. But like Electric grills, Gas leaves no discernible taste in the food it cooks. Gas also lights quickly, and the propane tanks which fuel most Gas grills are inexpensive. People who love a good smoky barbeque may not be fans of Gas grills. But Gas is the grill most frequently used by gourmet chefs and amateur grill masters alike.

Electric:  Electric brings all the great tastes of the grill, without the plumes of smoke. An Electric grill is clean, efficient, and ready to go as soon as you plug it in. Electric can come in small table top models, or big stand alone models.  Like Gas, an Electric grill can use its primary power source to power accessories and attachments. These Electric attachments help you cook your food using a number of different styles. Electric is very adaptable, and the control over the heat itself is excellent. But it may cook the food a little too cleanly for those who love their meat with a nice smoky flavor. And while an electric grill can get hot, it doesn’t get as hot as other grills.

Charcoal: Charcoal is a great overall grill. It gives meat a delicious smoky taste, and it’s one of the most adaptable styles around. With a Charcoal grill, you can use charcoal, charcoal with wood chips, or wood alone to cook your food. Charcoal allows you to get hands on with your meat because you are hands on with the fire itself.  And a Charcoal grill is the easiest to set up because it is not dependent on a source of gas or electricity. But unlike Gas or Electric, the temperature for a Charcoal grill can be sporadic. A Charcoal grill must be monitored carefully in order for the food to cook properly.  Depending on the cook, this can be a plus or a minus.

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3 Basic Outdoor Kitchen Island Layouts and Designs

Straight

The most basic design you can have for an Outdoor Kitchen Island is a simple straight line. Clean-looking & efficient, a straight Outdoor Kitchen can be as simple or as decked-out as you want it to be. It can house just a grill & some storage space or have all the trimmings! It depends only on the amount of room you have for it (and how much you want to spend on it!). This simple island from Fire Magic comes standard with an Aurora A430i Grill, Single Side Burner, & Side Panel Access Door.

 

 

L-Shaped

A step above the simple lines of the Straight Outdoor Kitchen, the L-Shaped Outdoor Kitchen adds just a little more function & eye-pleasing interest. Giving your guests a place to sit, the extra “arm” of the island is also a great place to add in more accessories – like a refrigerator or a beverage center! This particular island from Bull comes with a stainless steel sink & a 4.4 cubic foot refrigerator … along with an Angus Stainless Steel 4-Burner Grill. Something to keep in mind when setting up your L-Shaped Kitchen? Which way the wind blows! You want to make sure that the smoke from your grill will be blown away from your guests the majority of the time!

 

 

U-Shaped

For those who love to entertain, a U-Shaped Outdoor Kitchen is a great choice! With plenty of room for seating around the outside & plenty of room for accessories on the inside, a backyard barbeque with a U-Shaped Kitchen is sure to extraordinary! Go all out with your Outdoor Kitchen when you add accessories like a warming drawer, storage drawers, and even and AM/FM CD player!

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Top 5 Outdoor Kitchen Island Accessories

Trash Chute (w/ Cutting Board)

It’s inevitable that at some point during your outdoor dinner, you will have trash. Having a place to put it is key! This trash chute comes with an attached, sliding cutting board so that while you’re doing your prep work, you can simply slide the board to reveal the trash chute & dump your odds & ends! We’ve all worked with a “garbage bowl” before, but this way ensures that you don’t have a bowl full of food trash lying around for your guests to view … or for bugs to get in!

 

Kegerator

Having cold beer on-hand at all times makes you a great host. But don’t mess with buckets full of ice anymore – get a kegerator to add to your outdoor kitchen! Let your guests poor themselves a cold one anytime they’d like … and don’t worry about running out or the drinks getting too warm! This model has a front-mounted temperature display, so you’ll always know that your brew will be ice cold.

 

(Double) Side Burner

If you want to make your entire meal outdoors, a side burner is a must-have accessory! Perfect for side dishes in pots or pans, this accessory means you can have your burgers & brats on the grill … with the baked beans cooking right alongside them! No need to make all the side dishes inside while running back & forth to the grill for your main dish. Stay relaxed by keeping everything easy!

 

Warming Drawer

It’s nearly impossible to make a dinner where everything is ready at the same time. Instead of worrying about it, use a warming drawer to keep your main dish warm while you finish cooking your side dishes … or vice versa! This warming drawer can range in temperature from 90° to 220°! It also has a setting that allows you to choose “moist” or “crisp” so that your foods will maintain their proper textures.

 

Sink

Whether you need to clean up a mess, keep your hands clean, or just get a cool drink of water, having a sink as part of your Outdoor Kitchen is a must! This particular sink has an included soap dispenser so you don’t have to keep a separate bottle of soap outside.

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Three Steps to a Multisensory Outdoor Living Space

Outdoor living spaces provide unique opportunities for relaxing and entertaining. One of the major benefits of being outdoors is the multi-sensory experience. Before choosing enhancements for your outdoor living area, study the sensory experience that already exists. Spend time in the space at the different times of day that you will be using it to notice the sounds, sights, and yes, the smells that are a part of the environment.

1. Make connections.

 

You might view tree branches or boulders as things you need to work around. Instead, consider working them in to your décor! You can create a more integrated space by creating visual connections between natural structures to manufactured structures. For example, if your space includes boulders or rocks choose garden planters and pots that have similar colors and geometrics. Create tactile connections by using containers, furniture, and garden sculptures that mimic the textures in the surrounding landscape.

 

Garden suppliers like Pink Red Kelly have hundreds of planting containers that range from formal to rustic. Look for ones that mirror the shapes, textures, or hues in the surrounding landscape.

2. Go greener.

 

If you’re working in your garden, you’re already obviously a fan of nature. Taking care of the environment, especially your own personal one can be creatively exhilarating. In order to make your garden greener, use natural materials and create a peaceful place to sit, listen, and enjoy the sounds of the earth. Minimize interference traffic noise, and mitigate exhaust odors with strategically placed trellises or screens.

 

Water features and garden wind chimes can create soothing background sounds that will further draw attention from neighborhood noise. Even the coziest outdoor space can accommodate one of the many container fountains currently on the market.

3. Reduce stress.

 

It may seem counterintuitive, but including a clock in your outdoor space can actually reduce stress. You are unlikely to fully enjoy your outdoor experience if you are constantly worrying about what time it is. Decorative outdoor clocks come in a range of attractive styles and sizes. A quick glance at your beautiful garden clock will reassure you that you have plenty of time to keep enjoying the great outdoors.

 

In today’s busy go, go go, it’s nice to sit outside in your garden, take a minute for yourself and relax. Listen to the calming sound of the wind through your chimes. Enjoy the smell and sights of nature. You’ll feel better, and those few moments in your garden will be the breath of fresh air you’ve needed—literally.

Jessica writes about a wide variety of topics.  She especially enjoys writing about furniture. You can learn more about Garden Planters And Pots at http://www.pinkredkelly.com/

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