Reinventing Outdoor Dining Rooms

Bubble Room at the J Winery

You don’t always need to have a dining table to serve dinner. I recently visited the Bubble Room at J Winery in Healdsburg, California with friends for a 5 course pairing and had such a good time. We sat around a coffee table on a huge sectional with a fully set table. It was such a relaxing, fun, unique way to have dinner and facilitated lively conversation.

Behind an outdoor kitchen island is a dining terrace. Already, the space has a lot going on flanked by the kitchen, a lamp post and a fireplace. All of these will be softened as more plantings are selected and existing plantings grow in. Instead of opting for the obvious table and chairs which tends to suit only one purpose—a meal served all at once for a group and then generally is left vacant or if you do sit down at it alone, you feel like you need to be productive with so much desk height table space.

I found the perfect solution in charcoal twill cushions, a deep sofa (always check the depth measurement on outdoor "sofas" or you may end up with a well cushioned bench), coffee table and lounge chair. The pieces, selected are all from the Restoration Hardware Collection. These pieces will comfortably furnish the space while allowing for both multiple uses and a restrained uncluttered feel.

Always try to take stock when you are really comfortable and enjoying yourself in a new place or a favorite place.  Take stock of the people, the food, the wine, the environment, the furnishings.  Then, find a way to apply those perceptable good things to your lifestyle or use them to resolve an issue that has had you stalled. Summer is always just around the corner and winter is a really good time to find great deals on outdoor home furnishings.

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