The barbecue has become a staple in the American tradition. We use it as a way to bring friends and families together, but we don’t even really need a reason to throw barbecues. Sure, we tend to use summer holidays as an excuse to throw some wings, ribs, and beans on the grill while chugging down some brews. But truthfully, we’d throw barbecues on a weekly basis if we could, and some of us do.
Skip to the end… My pick is the Webber Genesis Grill.
Even though we go to extreme measures to ensure the food we cook is perfectly prepped and left on the grill for the perfect amount of time at the exact right temperature, all is for not if we don’t have a grill that isn’t capable of transforming your meat from generously spiced to incredibly flavorful.
There are several things that go into being the best pitmaster in the neighborhood. But one thing is more important than anything – YOU MUST HAVE A TOP NOTCH GRILL.
Today we are going to figure out who can make the best grills (of the gas variety). We will consider a few things:
- Temperature control
- Headspace (different from size)
All of these factors are important, and the best grill for you may not be the one that is best for the next guy. But this article should give you a reference frame to start from. P.S. Looking for a smoker box to go along with your grill? Check out my picks.
Let’s get into it.
Char-Broil Performance TRU Infrared 500
OK, Char-Broil is well known for their grill production prowess, and I love pretty much any grill made from them (especially the charcoal burning variety). The major selling point with these grills is the infrared performance.
Infrared performance lets you sear your meat perfectly every time because it can reach such high temperatures, but where infrared performance begins to shine is when the meat has been seared properly, and you have to remove it from the heat. Infrared technology will heat up the grill, but because you are not relying on a flame for the heating source you will never have to worry about flare-ups, resulting in perfectly even heat distribution.
The TRU Infrared 500 has 3 separate burners with 500 square inches of primary cooking space, and a 180 square inch porcelain coated swing rack. It uses a consistent easy to start ignition system that gives a dependable spark on each burner and lights the first time, every time. Find this grill at Amazon.
The advantages of cooking with infrared grills are fairly simple to grasp. They heat up quicker, they apply direct heat to the food and have even heat distribution. But some cons come with these machines as well.
First, infrared grills are infinitely more complex than a traditional grill, and as such, they can require a lot more maintenance than regular convection grills do. That is not just to say you have to treat the grill right, but also that when things go wrong with infrared grills, they tend to be much more difficult to correct.
Another downside is the cost of this relatively new technology, but as with all technology, it is becoming more affordable by the day.
Infrared technology for the grill is quickly becoming a viable cooking source, but don’t expect to make the switch without experiencing a learning curve. Infrared grilling is much hotter than your traditional grills., so you should expect to burn your food on occasion when you first start using it. Check out these awesome infrared thermometers, too!
If you’re anything like me, then you probably make up for burning your steaks by going all the way to the other extreme and not cooking the meat all the way through. But once you get the hang of using this type of method, you will enjoy your food.
Weber Genesis 2 E-410 Liquid Propane Grill
Weber is a staple in the barbecuing community, they use only the finest materials on their grills, offer superior heat distribution, and have a product that will last you a VERY long time. The Genesis 2 is Weber’s new line of premium grills that give you terrific results every time even with the stock grill, while still allowing the owner of the grill to make tweaks and adjustments to perfect their craft.
The GS4 comes with 4 high-performance burners with porcelain enameled “flavorizer” bars. There is a new grease management system in place that reduces flare-ups and makes it easy to remove grease. This is extremely important because old grease left on the grill can cause your food to taste terrible over time, not to mention the rancid smell of built-up grease on a grill.
There are 646 square inches of cooking real estate, with a 198 square inch warming rack above the grill grates. It uses Weber’s patented “infinity ignition” to ensure the gas will ignite each burner on the first try every time. Find this grill right here listed at Amazon.
Where Weber shines, in my opinion, is the material that their grills are made with. The use 302 stainless steel framing for the grill, the prep space is also a high-grade stainless steel, resulting in a sturdy, well-balanced grill that traps heat inside and gives you tremendous results. Add in the fact that the grill stays outside in the elements, and the high gauge stainless steel suddenly becomes a major selling factor.
Weber is considered a giant in the grilling industry for a reason. They are reliable, and they make outdoor cooking a breeze. The Genesis 2 is an awesome product that I would recommend to anybody who wants to begin grilling, or just take their food to the next level.
Looking for an indoor grill too? Check out these top-performing models.
Wrap – Up
When researching who makes the best gas grills, it quickly became apparent (to me at least) that there were only 2 real options to choose from – Weber and Charbroil. While I do enjoy the idea of infrared grilling, I feel like the Weber Genesis has the upper hand in this battle.
The upgradeability of these grills is something that I enjoy, but it also isn’t even close to necessary for you to do, because it offers incredible results right out of the box.
I still love cooking over flames (there is something about it that feels so primal) and because of that, along with the superb build of the grill, I would have to say the Weber would be my grill of choice.
Image credit via Flickr Creative Commons: Kate T. and woodleywonderworks