AFTER what seemed like an eternity of bracing ourselves against the cold and rain, summer has finally arrived and there’s nothing that us Brits love more than a good BBQ. The moment the sun appears from behind the clouds for those glorious few weeks, the shorts are donned, ciders are drank and barbeques are lit all around the city. As BBQs are such an important part of British summertime, it’s essential that they’re done to the utmost perfection. To make sure your BBQ is a hit, we’ve put together some tips to make sure that nothing will rain on your parade. THE MAIN EVENT Everybody knows the basics of a good barbeque; sausages, burgers, chicken… but people tend to forget about the fish. Seafood is delicious when grilled so put another shrimp on the barbie! For all the vegetarians out there, vegetables such as peppers, courgettes and corn on the cobs are delicious when given a smoky twist. PREPARATION IS KEY There’s nothing worse than a chaotic atmosphere when you’re trying to soak up the sun with a beer in hand, so make sure you have everything ready in good time. Our key tip is to marinade your meat the night before, that way you save time the next day and the flavours will be so much better. DON’T FORGET THE SIDES Side dishes are just as important as the mains so you can’t neglect them. Make sure you prepare things like potato and pasta salads, greens, coleslaw, couscous and a variation of crisps. SAUCES No BBQ is complete without a selection of sauces to accompany the delicious food. Obviously, there’s the standard picks of tomato ketchup, mustard and BBQ sauce, but stock up on others such as sweet chili sauce, hot sauce, mayo, relishes and chutneys – it’ll make all of the difference! DRINKS, DRINKS, DRINKS You know the score, it is obligatory for every BBQ-er to oversee the food with a beer in hand. With that in mind, beer is a BBQ an essential along with some fruity ciders. We also recommend opting for some summer appropriate cocktails, gin and tonic, lemonade, sangria and wine.