DIY Barbecue Guide: the perfect grill is much cheaper than you might think
Forget the fancy gadgets. Really good barbecue is about fire, smoke and meat
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed in the barbecue store, what with all the guy-baiting gewgaws like infrared burners, Snap-Jet ignition systems and sensi-touch control knobs. They’re impressive features, but they’ve driven the price of a top-of-the-line ’cue well above $10,000. And none of them make your food taste appreciably better. That’s what charcoal and the Weber kettle are for. The kettle grill hasn’t changed much since its invention in 1952: it’s a big metal bowl with a lid, two grates inside and air vents at the top and bottom. You can use it for long, slow, low-temperature smokes, simple steaks and dogs or the best grilled chicken ever. When you use a kettle grill, you’re in touch with your food, directly in control of fire, heat and sweet, peppery smoke, without a single knob or blinking LED to get in the way. That’s why the world’s best chefs revere them. (This spring I saw one smoking outside the test kitchen at Copenhagen’s NOMA, a.k.a. the world’s best restaurant.) The best part? Weber’s kettle grills cost as little as $140, and you can’t really get any fancy add-ons. Which is entirely the point.
The Weber One-Touch Gold charcoal grill. $220. Ontario Gas BBQ, 3310 Langstaff Rd., Concord, 905-761-8511.
2 thoughts on “DIY Barbecue Guide: the perfect grill is much cheaper than you might think”
If you do plan on getting a kettle-style charcoal grill, make sure you pick up a $15 dollar chimney starter. Fastest way to ignite coals and there is no need for lighter fluid, which not only is toxic but it also imparts a terrible flavour into your foods.
+1 to Rod’s suggestion. You can get a roaring charcoal fire with charcoal, the chimney, some balled up newspaper, and less time than it takes to drink a beer.
If it all goes wrong and you dump out the chimney too early, beeswax/sawdust fire starters from Cdn Tire can help.
My friends with gas grills won’t shut up about how much of a difference using actual charcoal makes. Dunno, seems obvious to me.
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