Be the host with the most with an entertainer’s kitchen
SERVING UP SEEMINGLY EFFORTLESS GOURMET CREATIONS IS AN ENTERTAINER’S DREAM. THE RIGHT KITCHEN CAN HELP YOU ACHIEVE A REPUTATION AS HOST WITH THE MOST
An entertainer’s kitchen needs to be highly functional – there’s no room for awkward and poorly planned elements when you’re bustling about, channelling Marco Pierre White. But, while it needs to have the heart of a commercial kitchen, it must also exude warmth and good looks to impress a crowd. It won’t plate up for you, but a kitchen with the right elements, streamlined design and helpful appliances is an ambitious host’s best sous-chef.
Picking a hood which can handle the heat in a busy kitchen is a must. “It’s worth doing research, though, so that you don’t have to battle the noise when your guests are over,” says Sam Zalin of Winning Appliances. Try the Qasair NDCH100L2B rangehood, $2370, Winning Appliances.
To get the look of natural stone, such as marble, without any of the maintenance issues, try a stone composite surface such as White Attica, $900/sqm, Caesarstone.
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Consider having a second dishwasher for mid-party clean-ups. “A half-drawer dishwasher under the island to quickly stack and wash glasses and smaller dishes helps keep your benchtop clean and clear,” says interior stylist Aimee. Try the Fisher & Paykel DishDrawer, from $1649.
“A great kitchen will have AMPLE STORAGE, both under bench and in overheads. PLAN your kitchen well to ensure everything has a spot” AIMEE TARULLI, INTERIOR STYLIST, ARCHER INTERIORS
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The studio roller from George & Willy is not only a convenient avenue to keep a running shopping list going, it’s also the perfect way to present your dinner party menu for all your guests to see – just make sure your handwriting is up to the task. From $211/450mm, George & Willy.
Whether it’s for an espresso martini, to get you through the after-party clean-up or to serve unexpected family and friends who drop in unannounced, having good coffee in the house is essential. The ECF01 ’50s style coffee machine in Cream from Smeg ($499) has super-chic Italian style.
Don’t underestimate the impact of a warm plate – it helps food to retain its heat, and will also make guests feel like they’re dining at a five-star restaurant. New models can also be used for melting chocolate and proving bread. Try the Bosch BIC630NS1A ‘Serie 8’ warming drawer, $828, Appliances Online.
“When designing an entertainer’s kitchen, the appliances always come first” CARMEL WYLIE, INTERIOR DESIGNER, GIA BATHROOMS & KITCHENS
A large fridge is essential and a French-door version is ideal. “The extra width is perfect for parties, storing oversized platters and tall bottles, all at eye level,” says Aimee Tarulli, who leads the interior design department at Melbourne’s Archer Interiors. If possible, add in a separate wine fridge to keep your favourite tipples at the perfect drinking temperature. THE BIG CHILL
Great illumination is crucial to food prep areas. For a party space, use a mix of general lighting and under-cabinet task lighting that will spotlight the work surfaces (not the chef), as well as accent lighting to create ambience and atmosphere when guests arrive. WELL LIT
Easy wipe-and-go surfaces such as stainless steel and composite stone can be used for both splashbacks and benchtops, while a feature splashback, such as this chic copper version, will add colour and interest to ensure the space doesn’t end up looking too commercial. SPLASH OUT
Mess is the absolute bane of an entertainer, which is where the butler’s pantry comes in, hiding the worst of the party chaos to be dealt with later. An ideal butler’s pantry will include extra storage, a large sink and plenty of bench space for prep work. HIDDEN HELP
DOUBLING UP A second oven is incredibly handy for entertaining, giving you maximum control over your cooking options and more time for guests. Consider making the second model a combi-steam oven for flexibility, like in this GIA-designed space.
FINISHING TOUCH Small details can make or break an entertainer’s kitchen, right down to the cabinet handles, so choose something sleek, wipeable and easy to grab, but that won’t catch you as you steam past with a tray of food.