Choosing You Alfresco KitchenStart Here
So, you want an alfresco kitchen but you have no idea where to start?
Consideration No 1. Is my alfresco area classed as indoors or outdoors?
This is a vital question for you to answer as this will determine what type of BBQ, exhaust hood and cabinets you can legally install.
Click here for an easy-to-understand guide on gas laws applying to alfresco areas.
Consideration No 2. What Type of Barbeque Should I Choose?
A. Safety Consideration
If your alfresco area is classed as “outdoors” (see the gas law guide here), then you can choose any BBQ that is licensed for use in Australia. Examples of these are Beefeater, Everdure, Smeg and Gasmate BBQs, which are available for purchase from Infresco.
If your alfresco area is enclosed then a barbeque that is legal for indoor use must be used. Infresco barbeques have been especially designed to fulfill this purpose. Our barbeques are also perfect for outdoor use and are much safer than domestic barbeques.
- Infresco Gourmet Barbeques are high quality, commercial grade products that are built to last a lifetime and can be customized to meet your requirements. Our barbeques are built using any combination of a hotplate, open grill or wok. We can also build in boiling burners and deep fryers.
B. Size Consideration
- If you have a large family, or have a lot of parties, obviously you will need a larger BBQ. If you are only cooking for a small family then there’s no need to take up lots of space with a huge BBQ, or to waste gas using 6 burners when you’re only cooking a few sausages.
- Make sure that the BBQ has enough burners to heat the hotplate so that you don’t end up with hot spots and cold spots.
- Infresco Gourmet Barbecues come in 4 standard sizes are 900mm , 985mm , 1185mm and 1360mm. The 1360mm is a favourite for larger families and entertainers, and include a hotplate, grill and wok.
- Infresco also custom make BBQS to any size you need. We have built several BBQs that are over 3-4 metres long!
C. Grill or Hotplate?
Many people prefer a full hotplate rather than an open grill. When you have an open grill, the fat and food remnants will fall through to the bottom of the BBQ and will therefore need to be cleaned out regularly. With a solid hotplate, no food falls through so cleaning is much easier. However, 99% of BBQs on the Australian market give you no choice but to have an open grill because it is a requirement for gas combustion.
Infresco BBQs can be built with a solid hotplate because our barbecues are designed in such a way that the gas can combust even if the BBQ has a solid plate. We also offer solid grills, so that your steaks get the attractive grill lines, but without the fat falling through to the bottom of the BBQ. And of course for the foodies who love their open grill, we cater for that too. It’s your choice! Out BBQs are custom made for YOU..
D. Do You Want a Roasting Hood?
Some people love to bake and roast on their barbeque, in which case a roasting hood can be a useful investment.
However, if you have an enclosed alfresco area (click here to determine if your area is enclosed) you must have a roasting hood that folds back far enough for the exhaust hood to extract the fumes from the BBQ. Most commercially available roasting hoods do not fold back far enough and are not legal for use in enclosed alfresco areas.
- Infresco roasting hoods (which are designed to fit Infresco Gourmet BBQS) are designed to fold backwards so that smoke from the barbeque can be sucked up vertically by an exhaust hood. Clearance of about 120cm is required between the barbecue and the wall for the roasting hood to fold back.
- A bench of 720mm is a great size for a bench top with our Infresco roasting hood.
Consideration 3: Should I get a Pizza Oven
- If you choose a pizza oven then consider the amount of bench space it will take up, especially if considering a wood fired pizza oven. You must also ensure that it is approved for indoor use if your alfresco area is classed as enclosed.
- A wood fired pizza oven weighs over 500kg and must be installed on a suitable structure with foundations, masonry walls and a reinforced concrete slab. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have a suitable structure to build the pizza oven upon. If Infresco are installing your entire outdoor kitchen then we can manufacture a base for you.
- When choosing between a gas or a wood fired pizza oven, it is important to remember that;
- A wood fired pizza oven can take hours to reach a suitable temperature and require firewood to operate. They can produce excess smoke (although shouldn’t where lighted correctly) and may be banned on days of extreme fire danger (please contact your local authority for more information.
- A gas fired oven is more predictable in determining its current temperature and will reach a suitable cooking temperature in approximately 15 minutes. They require less space and can still produce an authentic wood fired taste, particularly if you burn some hickory chips or other such additive while cooking.
Consideration 4: Should I Get an Inbuilt or Separate Wok?
This depends on the amount of bench space you have available.
- Our built in woks are popular for those who like to cook seafood regularly, such as crabs, and prefer to keep the smells outside the main house. They are also good for slow cooking ‘all day’ meals such stews and sauces.
- Infresco can either build a wok burner into your barbeque or install a separate wok burner into a bench top. The wok burner in the barbeque is usually the better option if bench space is limited. We can also build in large boiling burners or multiple smaller burners into either the barbeque or the bench top if desired. If you do have a separate burner in the bench top, you must ensure that it is covered by the exhaust hood, where the area is classed as enclosed.
Consideration 5: Do I Need an Exhaust Hood?
If you have an enclosed area, you must have an approved exhaust hood. If your alfresco area is not enclosed, having an exhaust hood over your BBQ is a personal choice. Many customers choose to install an exhaust hood to protect their ceiling or to remove excess smoke.
- An approved exhaust hood is one that is of a commercial standard and moves a minimum of 2000 cubic metres of air per hour, such as those manufactured by Infresco.
- The exhaust hood must be at a minimum height of 1200mm above the barbeque where your barbeque includes an open grill. If your barbeque does not have an open grill, it must be a minimum of 900mm above the barbeque. Where your ceiling height is too low, you may have to go without an open grill or have your exhaust hood built into the ceiling.
- Your exhaust hood should be the same size as the BBQ or larger. If you have an additional wok or hotplate, it should also cover this.
Consideration 6: What Type of Cabinets and Bench Do I Need?
Your cabinets must be non-combustible.
- We highly recommend stainless steel or fibre cement cabinets, such as those from our Alfresco Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets range. If your cabinets are combustible (i.e. timber) a heat shield is required to be installed between the barbeque and the cabinet. This will protect the cabinet from the heat of the barbeque.
- You must also ensure that the bench top is non-combustible. We recommend stainless steel or granite. A melamine bench top is combustible and a barbeque can’t be built into this type of bench top. If you choose a man-made stone, we recommend that you contact the manufacturer to ensure that it is non-combustible and that it will not fade or emit fumes when subjected to heat.
Infresco cabinets come with a range of finishing options, which are a matter of personal choice.
- If you are purchasing Infresco stainless steel cabinets, then you have three choices of doors: stainless steel, timber infill or glass infill. Stainless steel and glass will last the longest. Cedar will eventually start to deteriorate as it expands and contracts with moisture and heat but will still look great for years. The glass option is the easiest to keep clean, followed by stainless steel.
- Our Alfresco Sleek Series Cabinets are made from a UV Compact laminate which is extremely durable including weather proof, fade proof and impact resistant, giving these cabinets a long life span. They are the most hygienic option and are easy to clean with six colours to choose from. Modern looking design.
- If you are choosing our Alfresco Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets then you have the option of either a textured paint or a clad finish. Both options including a large range of colours and designs making these cabinets our most customizable option and allowing you to create an array of styles such as industrial, warm, modern or rustic.
- The Infresco Insertable Cabinets and Imported Cabinet Inserts are both made of stainless steel and are available for individual sale for DIY projects. Please see our DIY page for instructions on how to install these cabinets.
Consideration 7: Do I want any other appliances in my alfresco kitchen?
At Infresco we allow you to build in any additional appliances you like.
- Some examples include a fridge, dishwasher, ice maker, deep fryer, kegerator, oven, microwave and/or stove top. You can supply your own appliance or we can source it for you. If you wish to install a dishwasher, keep in mind that it is cheaper to install a full-height dishwasher than to install a half-height dishwasher (as the half height requires frames to be built).
Consideration 8: Do I want any heating in my alfresco kitchen?
Regulations applying to gas wall heaters are very strict. Please contact us for an information sheet.
- Most stand-up gas heaters are LPG, and are illegal to use in enclosed areas. You may need to consider an electrical heater. Keep in mind that even most gas wall heaters require a power point.
Consideration 9: Do I want a sink and tap?
Most clients do choose to install a sink and tap.
- It is useful to have hot and cold water available in your alfresco area to assist with cleaning. The size of sink depends on how much bench space is available. Some clients prefer a large trough type sink for washing pots or to use as an ice bucket. Some like a dish drainer attached to the sink. The majority choose a smaller sink that doesn’t take up too much room, but still allows the dishes to be washed.