Millions of Americans will spend the July 4th holiday grilling hamburgers, steak, fish and even veggies. It should come as no surprise that July 4th ranks as one of the most popular grilling occasions (Labor Day and Memorial Day are close behind). Eighty percent of U.S. households own a grill or smoker and 60% of households use their gill year-round according to a 2013 study conducted by the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA).
It's not too late to buy a grill for the long holiday weekend -- or even to upgrade your current one. Adam Rapoport, editor-in-chief of Bon Appetit magazine, chose a few grills that will do the job well on any budget and gives his take on what grilling tools are worth the splurge.
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His No. 1 pick was Grillworks' line of Argentinian-inspired grills. The handcrafted grills are made in Michigan and are quite pricey -- they start at $2,850 -- but they're "amazing" and a personal choice of top chefs, says Rapoport.
(Check out Bon Appetit's list of the 20 best grilling recipes of all time)
The brand's signature cast aluminum crankwheel can double as a rotisserie and the grills' v-shaped grooves allow fat and juices to collect in a trough that cooks can utilize for basting and sauce preparation.
For individuals with plenty of money to spend, Rapoport recommends Kalamazoo's K1000HS Hybrid Fire Grill with side burner.
"It's literally built like a tank," he notes. The revolutionary design gives users the ability to cook with gas, wood or charcoal (and it's easy to clean!). The device can reach 1,000 degrees for that perfect sear or char. The only drawback: it costs $21,195.
Rapoport insists that one can still achieve grilling greatness with the classic Weber grill. The simple yet durable design can be configured for both indirect and direct heat cooking and its $149 price tag makes it the most attractive to grillers. It can take a good 30 minutes for the coals to heat up so "go in the kitchen and prep the food," Rapoport suggests.
The next step after settling on the perfect grill? Buying your grilling tools. Rapoport's must-haves include tongs, a chimney starter, gloves and an instant-read thermometer. Should grillers skip the headlamp?
"It's so dorky," he says. "But you always end up grilling later than you think because you're having a few beers and the next thing you know it's 9 o'clock."
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