If Lockdown has proved anything it's that we've been really missing our family and friends. Now we can all look forward to meeting up with them again. Many of us though will naturally be reluctant to mingle with the crowds in the beer gardens, cafes and restaurants – even if we could get in. Instead we'll settle for our gardens, patios and back yards for our grand reunions. Settle? You can't help thinking it's a bit like sending kids to their bedrooms as punishment, it's no longer the hardship it once was – and so it is with our own outdoor spaces.
Our gardens, patios and back yards have certainly come a long way in the last few years and now cooking and entertaining beyond our back doors is something more and more of us welcome with a passion, especially when we're sharing with long absent friends and family. We've got all of those lazy sunny days and warm summer evenings with them to look forward to. The rusty old barbecue and creaky plastic seats are well and truly being consigned to history. We've upped our game. Especially in the area of outdoor cooking and it's all thanks to specialist products like the Big Green Egg, loved by television chefs the world over. This complete outdoor cooking system delivers restaurant quality food every time and allows you to cook in seven different ways, including baking, searing and roasting. It's so easy to use that cooking outside is no longer the faff it once was, even if you're just cooking for two. But it doesn't end there.
At The Stove Yard's newly expanded Newtownards showroom we have a whole section dedicated to outdoor cooking and heating. From Alfa Forni Italian pizza ovens (good enough for pizza shops in Italy) to a fantastic new collection of Traeger Grills and smokers complemented with authentic barbecue sauces and rubs straight from the USA. Then there's Morsø's sculptural designer garden fires that look stunning even when they're not lit. For people in a rush Morsø also make some great outdoor table-top gas grills. The Stove Yard's very latest offering is Hwam's stylish new collection of Danish-made outdoor stoves, fire pits and modular storage units and planters, all constructed in designer 'pre-rusted' corten steel – a unique addition to any garden.
So let the kids run riot, fire up the fire pit and light the barbecue and let's all celebrate the great outdoors and our new found freedom. You can check out The Stove Yard's outdoor heating and cooking collections here or better still call in at our Newtownards showroom. At The Stove Yard we have so many wonderful outdoor products that you can see at first hand and that you simply won't see anywhere else, so it's always well worth making the trip. Cheers!