Outdoor barbecue grills built of brick once were common fixtures on patios and outdoor living areas, but the emergence of inexpensive, effective and portable metal cookers and smokers relegated many of them to trash-burners. Now outdoor kitchens and entertainment areas are again popular, so the brick grill is staging a comeback. Many of the new ones are simply brick enclosures for a gas or charcoal grill but some are real cooking fireplaces and ovens.
Make a "Quickie" Grill
Make a "quickie" brick barbecue grill for a special party or function. It can easily be disassembled after that event is over. Lay down some concrete patio pavers as a base. Buy a metal grill from a building supply store or other outlet and stack the bricks to hold it. Don't use mortar -- just stack bricks one on top of the other, overlapping them in a "running bond" style and place the grill between layers of bricks. Set an aluminium foil pan on the pavers to hold wood or charcoal and to catch ashes.
Build a Permanent Grill
You can make a permanent brick barbecue by pouring a concrete slab and building walls with bricks mortared together. You can make this a simple open-sided rectangle one brick wide or build it with wider walls, a partial cover at the back and a brick chimney to carry smoke away. Put supports in mortar joints to hold a grill, a fire pan and an optional water pan if you want to use it as a smoker.
Surround an Existing Grill
If you already have a good gas or charcoal grill, enclose it in a brick shelter. Build simple brick walls to surround the grill, leaving space at the sides to slide the grill in and out. This uses your existing grill, but gives you a chance to build brick shelves to hold cooking utensils, barbecue rubs and other materials. Make it decorative by altering the brick pattern -- one brick down with three vertical on top, and so on.
Have an Outdoor Kitchen
Make a real "outdoor kitchen" with a brick grill or brickwork surrounding a big cooker. Build in a big metal cooker or build a real fireplace, with a section for cooking and another for heating on cool evenings. Use high brick walls to enclose the whole cooking area, with inlets to set pots, plants and other objects. Put a partial roof over the area for shade and shelter.
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