Charcoal or Gas Grill?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Pamela, Oct 13, 2003.

  1. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 1998
    Messages:
    8,748
    Likes Received:
    303
    Location:
    Boise, ID
    Real Name:
    Dennis
    I use the 3 burner "turbo" gas grill sold by Barbeques Galore. It's really heavy duty but not cheap - current price around $600. But you get what you pay for. You will need to replace a $200 gas grill every few years. Mine is 14 years old and still going strong. It uses heavy cast stainless steel burners (not sheet metal bladders poked with holes) under a very heavy cast iron grill with thermal rocks buffering between. They give a great warranty and I was able to do a major parts-swap one month before the warranty ran out. It's a good place to do general cooking on hot nights when you don't want to heat up the kitchen - with 3 gas burners you can use it as a stove as well as grilling. I used it to cook after the 1989 earthquake when we were without power for a few days - it's a great kitchen backup during emergencies. They are convertable between bottled propane and house natural gas if you run natural gas out to the patio.

    EDIT: see end of thread. Barbeques Galore went chap. 11 in 2008.
     
  2. Jim J

    Jim J Second Unit

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 1999
    Messages:
    290
    Likes Received:
    0
    Weber fan here. Performer. Normal charcoal heat and kettle, but with gas burners to ignite.

    turn the nozzle, press the switch. come back in five minutes, turn the nozzle off. get food ready for 20-25 minutes. grill. done.

    I even fire it up for a couple of burgers for me and my wife.

    It's not cheap tho (for a charcoal grill anyway)
     
  3. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2001
    Messages:
    8,399
    Likes Received:
    0
    on a slightly different note, what techniques do you all have to clean your grills?

    since mine has the ceramic coating, i've been a little unsure. i've been told both sides. one said i have to be careful about what i use and not to use those wire brushes or anything too abrasive. the other people tell me those grills are bullet-proof and you can use whatever you'd like.

    for now, i'm just using one of those plastic handle/brillo pad type things....seems to work well enough without doing any damage.
     
  4. Pamela

    Pamela Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2001
    Messages:
    779
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was leaning towards the charcoal, but now I'm thinking the gas grill might be more useful for me.
     
  5. Jim_F

    Jim_F Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 15, 2000
    Messages:
    1,078
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gas with hickory chips. [​IMG]
     
  6. Leroy

    Leroy Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    306
    Likes Received:
    0
    The Weber Q gril is a fantastic gas grill. I was a charcoal man myself for years, but since I became a season ticket holder for the Houston Texans and Tailgate before every home game cooking with charcoal became a chore the first season. So I picked up the great Weber Q!
    It is portable, in the sense that you can take it with you, but it weighs about 40lbs(most of that is the iron grilling surface). They also make a stand for it too, so you can easily use as your backyard grill or take it with you to the park/beach etc.
    As far as using wood chips, I simply use a small smoker box placed on the cookng surface and it works great.
    I'll never go back to charcoal (that's something I tought I would never say![​IMG] )
    Take a look here!
     
  7. Dave Falasco

    Dave Falasco Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2000
    Messages:
    1,185
    Likes Received:
    0
    As has been previously noted, it's really a matter of convenience versus taste. I agree that charcoal-cooked food tastes better, but as many other people noted, the ability to come home, spin a dial, and be cooking in five minutes is great. For me, it's made the difference between cooking out once a week (with charcoal) and cooking out every night it's not raining (with gas). And with a $2 smoker box, you can add wood chips to your gas grill and gain a lot of that smokey flavor that charcoal gives you.

    Now, having said that, the Stop and Shop near me was clearing out their charcoal grills a few months ago and I did pick up a Weber kettle grill for like $40. I use that one mostly for slow-cooking foods, because I can continually add wood chips every hour to keep the smoke going.

    Still, if I were to buy only one grill it would definitely be gas, simply for the convenience and ease of use. What Ted said about controlling the heat zones is a huge advantage in my opinion. The ability to turn off the burners directly under your food and let it cook via indirect heat is crucial for bone-in foods like whole chickens or spareribs, and it is so much easier to do that with a gas grill than with charcoal.
     
  8. Andrej Dolenc

    Andrej Dolenc Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 1998
    Messages:
    249
    Likes Received:
    0
    Another vote for charcoal. It just tastes better. Not any charcoal, I tend to stay away from briquettes. Chunk hardwood charcoal, the good stuff. Lights way faster than the briquettes, burns hot as hell. Personally I don't use a Weber kettle grill because you can't raise or lower the coals. Just a cheap $30 sears grill. Doesn't look pretty but tastes awesome.

    Andrej
     
  9. wally

    wally Second Unit

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2001
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  10. Pamela

    Pamela Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2001
    Messages:
    779
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think I'm going gas grill. The thought of going home, lighting up the BBQ and throwing a big slab of salmon on, has my mouth watering.

     
  11. Bryan X

    Bryan X Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Messages:
    3,469
    Likes Received:
    3
     
  12. LewB

    LewB Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2002
    Messages:
    1,282
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  13. David Brass

    David Brass Agent

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    0
    Lew;

    Recipe for grilled fish:

    Take any firm-fleshed fish (salmon, halibut, mahi-mahi, shark) and apply a thin coat of olive oil. Sprinkle with your favorite herbs and grill ten minutes to the inch of thickness.

    Eat with a fork.

    David
     
  14. Dave Falasco

    Dave Falasco Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2000
    Messages:
    1,185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Sounds good, David...could you elaborate just a bit about the heat, though? Does fish cook over high heat like most boneless meats? Or would a medium heat be better? And how do you prevent it from sticking to/falling through the grates? Tin foil? Fish basket?

    I'm anxious to add fish to my repetoire of "chickens and cows" (great quote, Lew), but it seems like such a delicate meat...
     
  15. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 1999
    Messages:
    6,888
    Likes Received:
    2
    Fish baskets are awesome for cooking (I grill fish on my BBQ a lot) but suck bigtime to clean.

    One more thing to consider, and it will depend entirely on your particular environment.

    Charcoal is more of a fire hazard than gas. There's no "off" switch on charcoal. Whether or not this matters to you will depend on your environment. A wood deck versus a brick or stone patio for example.
     
  16. David Brass

    David Brass Agent

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi Dave;

    I always fire it up to high and the coating of olive oil usually keeps it from sticking too badly. Just in case, use a sharp metal spatula.

    My grill (Char Broil Commercial Series) has a big-ass iron grate for grilling and nothing is going to fall through there.

    While we're at it, coat your asparagus with olive oil and garlic powder and then put it on there as well (perpendicular to the grill pattern of course) and cook until it's done as you like it.

    Vinaigrette works equally well with vegetables and some fish.

    David
     
  17. Dave Falasco

    Dave Falasco Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2000
    Messages:
    1,185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks, man, that sounds delicious! The Weber I have has some pretty thick grates on it as well (the gas grill, anyway), but the charcoal one I mentioned picking up on the cheap has flimsy wire grates and those I would worry about fish falling through. A friend of mine wraps his fish in tinfoil with some lemon and (believe it or not) Miracle Whip, but I don't know if that's for me.
    Oh, silly me, I just remembered I have a grilling wok that I cook veggies on...that would be perfect for fish! Looks like I'm due for a stop at the market on the way home. [​IMG]
     
  18. David Brass

    David Brass Agent

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm coming over. What time's dinner and what can I bring?
     
  19. Randy Tennison

    Randy Tennison Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 1999
    Messages:
    1,099
    Likes Received:
    0
    Real Name:
    Randy
    I work for the 2nd largest propane company in the US. I get a fantastic discount on propane grill bottles. I can even get a great deal on high quality gas grills.
    I use charcoal.
    There is no compairison. Charcoal tastes better. I use a Kingsford Grill which is really nice, because the ashes collect on the bottom, in a pull out container
     
  20. Dave E H

    Dave E H Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2002
    Messages:
    829
    Likes Received:
    0
    I love charcoal but I'm switching to gas. Convenience is just the killer for me. I WILL keep my charcoal for when I have time, but I'd rather grill on gas 5 days a week than only grill once a week with charcoal.
     

Share This Page