Making Plans Now for Outdoor Eating Occasions

We’ll admit it. The cold weather has only just started and already we are mentally imagining the trees with green buds, lawn mowers humming, and the smell of cooking in the outdoor air. While the reality of that scenario is still some time off and as the outside temperatures continue to plummet, we are staying warm inside dreaming of how to create the ultimate outdoor kitchen space. Since we’re still in the imagination stage; that space could include an outdoor kitchen area as well as an adjacent area for outdoor dining or maybe an area to set up for open flame cooking or a smoker.

An Outdoor Space and a Winter Dream

When it comes to an outdoor kitchen we’re looking for an area with lots of space for refrigeration, grills and cooktops, one or two sinks and plenty of room for prep work and storage. Starting from the ground up, we’re thinking about a durable floor made of natural stone or granite that’s sealed with UV stabilizers. The sealer will also be a must for protection from spills of party drinks, wine, and condiments such as mustard, ketchup and barbeque sauce. We have good friends who are on occasion a little bit messy! The sealer will also add a layer of protection from snow, ice, wind and water.

Just like in real estate, the location of this outdoor eating area should be prime, complete with a natural overhang that will provide plenty of natural shade but won’t interfere with the smoke rising from an open flame cooktop, fireplace or grill. Right now, we’re thinking that a fireplace might be the perfect way to anchor the site and it will allow us to build out the area from that center. It will also be the perfect spot to grill chicken, whole onions, bell peppers, potatoes, eggplant, steak, lamb and make s’mores for dessert.

Steps for Building the Perfect Outdoor Place

  • Decide if and how the indoor and outdoor kitchen areas will work together
  • Create an outdoor plan with the proper proximity (Check out the National Kitchen & Bath Association for planning guidelines.)
  • Consider exposure to the elements and the durability of the materials chosen
  • Designate an element to anchor the space such as a pool, roofed structure, trees or pergola
  • Plan in advance where utilities, music and TV hook-ups will be desired

To maintain the natural shine of the stone or granite of the stone pavers and countertops, we’ll choose the gentle and non-abrasive Rock Doctor Granite & Quartz Cleaner. The Rock Doctor Granite & Quartz Cleaner removes dirt and stains from the stone. After cleaning with Rock Doctor Granite & Quartz Cleaner, we will apply a coat of Rock Doctor Granite & Stone Sealer to seal the stone pavers from potential stains, moisture, and dirt.

Rock Doctor Granite & Stone Sealer is safe for use on marble, granite and other natural stones. This cleaning duo also is eligible for a $2 mail-in rebate on each Rock Doctor purchase. For additional rebate details, click here.

This article was brought to you by Rock Doctor, which offers a line of specially formulated stone cleaner, stone polish, and stone sealer products. Rock Doctor stone care products can be purchased through a number of fine retail stores, including Wal-Mart, Lowe’s Home Improvement, Bed Bath & Beyond, Ace Hardware, Do it Best Hardware, Hy-Vee, and Wegmans.