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where to start - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



New Forno Bravo Forum Feature

Forno Bravo Forum Community,

You will notice a new forum at the top of the main page called, "Ask Me Anything". This forum will be used for live one hour "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) sessions hosted by people who are knowledgeable in different areas pertaining to wood fired ovens. How it works:
- Each AMA will have a "sticky" thread where the community can post questions they would like answered during the live session. This will allow everyone to participate even if you can't be online for the live session. These questions will not be answered by the host until the live AMA; if you need an answer quickly, you should post it in the appropriate Forum area for the community to respond.
- Another thread will be posted for the live AMA. Registered users who are logged in during the live session can interact with the host by asking questions and receiving responses.
- The live thread will remain in the AMA forum to view after the session.

To kick off our AMA feature, we have invited author, chef and master bread maker and host of Pizza Quest, Peter Reinhart, to be our first host! Peter will be in the Forum on Monday, February 15th, from 7:00 - 8:00 pm EST. If you are unable to be online during the live session, you can post your questions in the sticky post. Peter will answer those questions during the live session on February 15th. You can view Peter's answers to your questions as well as what happened during the live session in the session thread.

We hope you enjoy this new feature! Please let us know if there is a topic that you'd like to have as an AMA and we'll look for a host!

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  • where to start

    Hi all.

    I am planning my outdoor kitchen project. When complete it will project about 18' from house and go about 40-45 feet wide, or all the way across the back of the house. I plan to have a WFO, gas grill, burners, fridge, sink, eating/watching bar, rectangle dining table, fireplace and hot tub.

    My question i swhere to start. Since this is almost Gulf Coast Texas, shade is a must. do you think i should start with the permananent patio cover or pergola type of shade? Or should i start with the patio- stained concrete and start buildingin the cabinets from there. is there any disadvantage to pouring hte concrete in 2 or thre sections?

    As for cabinets is there any benefit to build them from block rather than metal studs and hardyplank?

    like i said im still in planning.....

  • #2
    Re: where to start


    I too have begun work on my outdoor kitchen and so far have completed the foundations for my kitchen counter and island. I am about to pour my foundation slab and follow with block hearth stand. Once I've poured the hearth foundation and insulation my plan is to install my brick patio pavers (1500sq'). I decided on this order so I can have almost all of my concrete work finished before my pavers go in.

    Hope this helps,



    • #3
      Re: where to start

      I would start with concrete first, making sure you have a good foundation that can support your patio cover or pergola. You'll want to check with city codes to see what's required there, but anything next to the house should be regulation foundation and not just a slab. It's a bit more work but you might want to enclose it some day and would be very mad if you didn't do it now.

      I wouldn't stain the concrete until you're done. Staining is very easy to scratch and/or chip and what you're working on will definitely cause some scratches at minimum. If you can afford it, I'd suggest planning your layout and then getting brushed concrete poured where your oven and kitchen will go and stamped colored concrete for the rest. But stained is nice too.

      Block vs Metal Studs is a preference in my opinion. I'm going to be using metal studs for my cabinets as they're easier to work with and a bit more forgiving.

      Shay - Centerville, MN

      My Outdoor Kitchen/Pompeii WFO Build...


      • #4
        Re: where to start

        One thought that comes to mind: you'll be really glad of some shade (protection from the rain could be less of an issue where you are, right?) while building the oven. So I'd say first the foundation, then the pergola, then the oven, and then everything else (i.e. all the lesser parts of an outdoor kitchen ). And floor finishing last.
        "Building a Brick oven is the most fun anyone can have by themselves." (Terry Pratchett... slightly amended)



        • #5
          Re: where to start

          Hi Aaron!

          I am in San Antonio so I don't have nearly the rain or humidity issue you do but I am contemplating retrofitting a roof over my oven area. I have several thoughts that may not fit well with your plans but... having lived in the Houston area for 25 years prior to moving to SA, I think they are worth noting.

          It sounds like you are planning a big area with a potentially large roof. Given your vulnerability to tropical storms I would suggest involving an architect in designing the roof and its supports (your city planners should probably require it!)

          A second point is that the roof and its supports and the foundation should be coordinated or it feels almost certain it will come out wrong and require reverse engineering. Likewise, planning and instaling the electrical and natural gas supplies to the facility should be carefully thought out and installed before the foundation. You at least need to have the supplies installed to their distribution points.

          Given the tendency to driving rain and deluges in Houston I think it would be good to have a permanent and sizeable roof to protect the electical appliances and cabinets. Likewise, having a real roof over the oven will greatly help keep it dry and avoid having to periodically redry it out after it gets drenched (which will almost certainly happen if you don't put a real roof/walls around it.) (Note: this could be a stand alone roof for the oven only but I would not suggest an igloo without a roof.)

          WRT which to do first, cover or foundation, I think they pretty much go hand in hand. You probably want to do the foundation/bases for the walls/roof at the same time as the foundation so the plans are needed up front. Then pour the foundation and then I would build the walls/roof - if nothing else to give shade for working on the cabinets, oven, etc.

          Good luck! I look forward to seeing pictures!
          Last edited by texassourdough; 07-05-2009, 07:47 AM.


          • #6
            Re: where to start

            Taking donations!

            I would also like to put in a smoker but cant seem to find the room for the firebox believe it or not!

            Have any of you Texans had a brisket done in a WFO? how did it taste?


            • #7
              Re: where to start


              Seeing as I'm just ready to pour my foundation slab I haven't cooked a brisket in my WFO yet. However, I certainly plan to do a number of them and pork shoulders too. Once the oven cools to proper temp (230*) for briskets, etc, I don't imagine there would be too much of a smoke profile. This may require the first 3-4 hours in the smoker prior to putting into the oven to finish.



              • #8
                Re: where to start

                here we are almost 4 yrs and 2 kids later,this project is still a dream. I did end up acquiring a 10' prefab outdoor kitchen countertop with a dcs grill dual burner and warming drawer. I also picked up a grill dome that works fairly well.

                One of these days.....


                • #9
                  Re: where to start

                  Originally posted by aaronlalonde View Post
                  here we are almost 4 yrs and 2 kids later,this project is still a dream. I did end up acquiring a 10' prefab outdoor kitchen countertop with a dcs grill dual burner and warming drawer. I also picked up a grill dome that works fairly well.

                  One of these days.....
                  Keep the faith,
                  The toil and trouble (scrounging for materials and the work) is worth the effort .
                  The kids will be "grown and gone" before you know it, "If you build it, they will come" ......back more often .
                  joe watson

                  "A year from now, you will wish that you had started today "

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