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From Pizza Paddles to BBQ Covers: A Complete Guide To Outdoor Eating

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With longer days and warmer nights just around the corner, now is the perfect time to begin preparing your garden for all of the summer social gatherings that lie ahead. Whether your summer evenings are spent toasting marshmallows, flipping burgers on the BBQ or nibbling slices of home-cooked pizza with your friends and family, having a beautiful garden space with comfortable furniture is essential.

There’s no denying that an al fresco dining experience is like no other. With a cool blue sky above and fresh air all around, the location is perfect. All that is left to decide is how, and what, you’ll eat. Whether you’re a carnivorous connoisseur or a plant-based aficionado, there are endless possibilities for outdoor cooking.

Of course, investing in outdoor cooking apparatus requires a little research. If you’re struggling to decide, fear not. From pizza paddles to gas barbecues, we’ve got you covered. To help you host the best garden parties this summer, we have created a complete guide to outdoor eating for the summer season.

Read on to discover all you need to know.

Location Is Everything!

As sunshine and warmer weather are often limited in the UK, it is important to choose your outdoor eating space carefully to maximise the amount of sunshine your seating area gets. Location is everything, and taking a little time to decide can make a world of difference. For example, placing a table under a tree is a great choice for shade, but may need a wipe down every so often to take care of sap and leaves. On the other hand, a wood burner or BBQ should be positioned a safe distance from your home to prevent the risk of fire or smoke contamination.

In terms of eating, choosing a spot that gets plenty of sun is always a bonus, but this is dependent on the time of day. Knowing where the sun rises and sets will make this decision a little easier. With this knowledge, you can find an area that gets decent light all day. Of course, if you’re fond of an outdoor breakfast, finding a space that gets morning light is a must.

Either create a convenient space close to your home for ease of access or pick a spot in a picturesque or secluded part of the garden for added protection against the elements. Having a wooden pergola or shaded area can also provide coverage for patio seating, ensuring it is usable all year round.

Seating & Dining

So, you’ve found the perfect spot for an evening drink and a delicious meal, what next? You’ll need somewhere to dine of course! Choosing the right garden furniture is dependent on many factors including aesthetic preference, materials and environment.

For those on the hunt for a more relaxed dining experience, a lounge and sofa set may just be the perfect choice. With a range of colours, combinations and styles to choose from, they make a versatile addition to any garden. For example, our Heritage Grand Rectangular Casual Dining Set W/ Adjustable Table is ideal for those seeking comfort and practicality. With an L-shaped sofa, adjustable table and 2 bench seats, there is enough space for all the family and guests.

On the other hand, if a formal al fresco dining experience is more your style, a traditional dining set might be a better choice. Take, for example, the sleek and sophisticated Capri 6 Seat Oval Set; there’s no doubt that a large upright dining table accompanied by 6 comfortable seats and cushions will lead to many memorable evenings in the warm sun.

Cooking Equipment

No discussion of outdoor eating would be complete without talking through the abundance of cooking devices and accessories available. Whether you’re a full-time professional chef or a part-time foodie, there’s nothing like sparking up a barbecue and getting your grill on! That said, it’s no use buying cheap, low-quality cooking equipment as this will only need replacing and can ruin your food.

The cooking equipment you buy will largely depend on the food you plan to cook. However, for the sake of versatility and convenience, a high-quality BBQ is always a good choice. Below, we’ll run through a handful of our favourite cooking equipment.

Charcoal & Gas Barbecues

As we mentioned briefly above, a BBQ is a sure choice when it comes to versatility and convenience. Whether you’re a fan of steak, fish or roasted vegetables, you’re in safe hands. Both charcoal and gas barbeques are accompanied by their own benefits so it is worth researching each before making a decision.

A gas BBQ is a great choice for those wanting to cook consistently, with multiple burners providing even cooking and searing. What’s more, gas burners provide instant heat, ideal for quick meals and easy cooking. No more waiting around for coals to heat, with a gas barbecue you’re ready to cook almost instantly. Of course, they’re a little more expensive than their charcoal counterparts, so budget and requirements will play a part in your decision.

That said, charcoal barbecues are a welcome addition to any garden and can provide much higher heats than a gas bbq. There’s a reason that BBQ enthusiasts swear by the traditional ways; charcoal provides a unique smokey flavour, juicer meats and are a pleasure to use. There’s a certain joy to the preparation of a charcoal barbeque. What’s more, charcoal barbecues can be used with accessories such as pizza stones, which we’ll cover below.

Pizza Stones

As touched upon above, pizza stones are a practical addition to any charcoal barbecue. By placing one of these handy cooking surfaces on top of a barbecue, you’ll be able to achieve perfect pizzas, breads and desserts from the comfort of your garden. What better way to spend a sunny afternoon than making your own pizza? Once they’re ready, sit back and enjoy them sitting around your dining set!

BBQ Covers

As evening turns to night and the temperature drops, it’s certainly worth protecting your barbecue and equipment from the elements. BBQ covers are the best way to keep your kit safe when it’s not being used. Take our Grillstream Deluxe Cover, for example. Constructed from long-lasting polyester with easy-fix tabs, this cover will ensure your barbecue is protected from UV, light showers, dirt and grime.

Cleaning Tools

As with any outdoor escapade, it’s likely to get a little messy from time to time. From BBQ grease and charcoal ash to spilt wine and fizzy drinks, there’s always something to clean after an al fresco meal. Fortunately, with the right tools, this is no problem.

Usually, washing up liquid, antibacterial spray and a bit of elbow grease is all you’ll need for little spills and basic cleanups. However, when it comes to used BBQs, pizza stones and grills, you might need something a bit tougher. After all, nobody wants to taste yesterday’s leftovers on today’s dinner.

For example, your BBQ will benefit from the use of high-quality enamel cleaner, capable of dissolving grease and dirt with ease. Additionally, a strong grill brush is a must for tougher dirt and build ups on grills, BBQs and pizza stones.

It may seem trivial, but giving your cooking equipment a thorough clean before and after use is guaranteed to improve the quality of your meals!

Outdoor Living, Portable BBQs & Garden Furniture: Woburn Sands Emporium

With summer just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to upgrade your outdoor area. If you’re on the hunt for the very best in outdoor eating equipment and garden furniture, look no further than Woburn Sands Emporium.

As a family-owned business, we’re always happy to help our customers improve their gardens. Just get in touch and let us know your requirements.

Give us a call on 01908 281161 or send an email to

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