Charming Outdoor kitchen NN13
Charming Outdoor kitchen NN13
Sandy and his wife Claire approached us in October 2022 with a project to build an outdoor cooking space on a small gravel area next to his Traeger grill in the small village of Evenley, near Brackley and Silverstone, Northamptonshire. The brief was to build an oven and prep area with space for a grill and adjustable warming plate, all built using Cotswold stone and lime mortar to match their house. In the intervening months we prepared drawings based on their ideas and got everything agreed to start work in the new year.
Tragically my wife died suddenly a week before Christmas so any thoughts of starting work were put off for several months while we coped with the funeral arrangements and grief. As things eased, we prepared to start work during March 2023 and made arrangements for deliveries to site in advance of our doing the foundations and starting in earnest.
March 2023 was not kind, every kind of weather imaginable passed through, freezing wind, snow, rain, sun and then back to winter conditions. We plodded on, covering the work at night with layers of hessian to stop the lime mortar freezing or being washed out by rain. We were lucky to get half a days work in most days but our customers, knowing that they would face a fairly hefty hotel bill while we stayed over, were happy for us to carry on regardless.
We bought our stone from Cotswold Natural Stone ( CNS group) who sent us their ‘Grange Hill grey’ walling stone, cropped to a fixed bed width but in random lengths and heights. The stone was laid with a standard Limelight NHL 3.5 hydraulic lime mixed with a mixture of coarse sharp and building sand.
Annoyingly Travis Perkins who supplied the sands have different sands at different branches so Buckingham who supplied the original batch has different sand to both Brackley and Banbury which were both more local to pick up the next batch. Consequently the mortar changed slightly throughout the build and although irritating, the builders who built the extensions to the house clearly had the same issue as their mortar colour changed as well!
The oven the customer chose was our Four Grand-Mere F800B-H+ with a raised brick dome that is 75mm higher than our standard dome. It gives a bit more space for large joints or if you want to raise the cooking off the hearth with a steel grill on legs and use wood coals for heat instead of conducted heat from the hearth itself. See our blog post about the differences between the standard and raised options
The grill and adjustable warming plate was fabricated by a long term partner of ours, Hiscock Engineering based in Trowbridge who always do a great job of understanding what we need with a fast turnaround.
The Charming Outdoor Kitchen NN13 is a good example of how we can adapt the design to clients wishes as Sandy and Claire both wanted the whole oven clad in stone including the front red arch that comes as standard with the kit. The stone arches were made from sandstone setts that the customer had left over from previous landscaping work and they proved to work well when split down to the right size and matched the cotswold stone very well. The oven flue was finished off with a reclaimed chimney pot we found at a local reclamation yard, again in a colour that would match the stone.
All in all the project turned out well despite the terrible weather and by April/May had improved enough so we actually worked full days without running for shelter every few hours. sandy and Claire both seemed happy with the build and couldn’t wait to get started cooking in the pizza oven. Hopefully it gives them the opportunity to try different recipes and hone their pizza skills while the grill should enable them to cook in a more informal way over hot wood coals
Charming Outdoor kitchen NN13 Sandy and his wife Claire approached us in October 2022 with a project to build an outdoor cooking space on a small gravel area next to his Traeger grill in the small village of Evenley, near Brackley and Silverstone, Northamptonshire. The brief was to build an oven and prep area with […]