As you may recall, a few weeks ago I lost the use of a dear friend in a fit of compassion (What’s that you say? You don’t recall? Well look right here.). At the time I was disappointed that after a few thousand years of being removed from the meat production process I no longer had the necessary chops to provide for my brood, but was really mostly depressed because it meant I was going to have to go a summer without grilling or at least grilling easily.
As part of my conceding some adorable baby birds deserved a shot at growing up to poop on things, my wife assured me a new grill would be in my future. With that, I started fantasy shopping about several new models, and I had some very basic criteria.
- I wanted it to look pretty. I’m trying to get my patio together, and while my old grill was functional, it wasn’t very attractive to anything but a family of birds.
- I had to have a solution that would heat up quickly so I could grill during the weak with our schedule, I’ve only got about an hour and 15 minutes to cook, feed, and clean the kids before bedtime. This pretty much ruled out a charcoal grill.
- I needed something bigger. On my current grill, I just didn’t have enough room to cook enough food to feed my whole family at once.
- It needed to be movable. I want to store it next to the house, but I need to be able to pull it away before lighting it. The new patch of siding on the back of the house gives testament to the lesson I learned last Father’s Day.
This weekend, the piper finally got paid and I got a shiny new grill for Father’s Day.
I looked into some gas/charcoal combos but couldn’t find any that were reviewed very well and ultimately decided that if I needed to do charcoal I could use my firepit but that this bad boy (with nearly twice the grilling surface of my old one) would work out fantastically. I also liked that this one included a vegetable steamer you could put in or take out (I recognize it’s a gimmick, but if I recognize that I don’t have to feel like a rube) and as we all know I like to get my health on (or at least like to feel I have the option to get my health on, knowing full-well that before too long I’ll be trying to steam bacon in there).
This grill did admittedly have mixed reviews (which would normally put me off) but most of the reviews were about how hard it was to put together. Since I was going to buy it already assembled, I didn’t care, and I felt OK with the rest of the write-ups I saw.
After having cooked one meal on it (which included fresh veggies, hot dogs, brats, and a couple of Daddy Day porterhouses) I’m pretty stinking happy so far. It got up to temperature in no time, it responded to my temperature changes, it had all sorts of room for me to use, and the food turned out great, which is no small feat for me. Also, since it was hugely discounted, I got to get an insanely expensive grill for a moderately ridiculous price, which is always nice (I like to know how rich people feel sometimes. Sue me. That’ll just give me something else to check off of my faux-rich guy bucket list).
Final grades: The grill gets a Cuban with Smoked Provolone, those birds get a Cuban with Swiss, and the store experience gets a Reuben (the guy was a little weird, and they didn’t have the cover I wanted).