With soaring temperatures just around the corner (fingers crossed everybody!), chances are you’re looking forward to heading to your local pub beer garden to soak in the rays and revel in the good times after a long winter cooped up at home. The thing is, only 38% of UK licensed premises have a beer garden, meaning competition for tables of six is going to be fierce.
To get around this while the world gets back to normal, why not bring the pub to your back garden this summer? Here’s how…
Build your beer garden
Start by asking yourself what you want your beer garden to look like, and how permanent you want your seating, tables, storage, and any extras, such as a barbecue, to be?
Picnic tables, a kettle barbecue, and trestle tables with garden umbrellas can combine to make a great budget option if you’re only expecting to welcome guests to your DIY beer garden occasionally. If you’re going to have friends and family over on the regular, however, we’d recommend putting on your DIY cap and building a more permanent solution.
This could involve building decking or a patio, installing fitted seating with permanent awnings, or building a wood-fired brick barbecue to bring an extra ounce of flair to your bar food. Yes, these cost a bit more, so it’s important to budget appropriately. And while we’re on the subject, a fire pit is also a fantastic idea – even in British summer, temperatures still get nippy in the evenings!
Sort your storage
You can’t have a beer garden without beer, and unless you’re purely serving imperial stouts and doppelbocks, your beers should be cooled depending on their type.
Getting your beers to the correct temperature can be simply and easily sorted with a big container, water, and plenty of ice, but if you want to go further, consider investing in an outdoor refrigerator. Also good for a place to store your burgers, you can pop this fridge in the garage when it’s not in use or buy a properly outdoor rated one that can be installed in your barbecue area, outdoor bar or shed.
Get the atmosphere right
Once the basics of your home pub beer garden are arranged, you can start thinking about the extra touches that will make your garden a sure-fire hit with guests.
- Snacks – Everyone loves a cheeky bar snack while they sip, so get together a nice stash of nuts, crisps, scratchings, pretzels, or whatever your guests enjoy snacking on.
- Decorations – Do you fancy crafting a theme for your beer garden? It’s all in the decoration, so consider old tin signs for a classic British pub aesthetic, bright colourful outdoor art for a contemporary or festival vibe, and lots of bamboo and palm plants if you plan on saying “aloha” to your guests!
- Lighting – As the sun goes down in the evening, you don’t want your home beer garden atmosphere to suffer, so get some tea lights for your tables and add flourishes to do with your theme: tiki torches, fairy lights, a fire pit – whatever works best!
- Music – While the sound of a crackling fire and good conversation can work perfectly, having a little background music rarely goes amiss. Get yourself a good Bluetooth speaker or invest in weather and splash-proof outdoor speakers, then make a playlist based on your theme, or whatever you and your guests love to listen to.