Let’s face the facts, the tailgate doesn’t start until you fire up the grill and begin cooking.
In the south, the grill is the epicenter of the tailgate. No less than three to four people are usually gathered around to survey the progress that is being made as hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken in different forms are cooked and prepared. These days, buying a grill is akin to buying a car. There are different models with different options to consider and I’m not even mentioning all the choices when it comes to shapes and sizes. Here are some of the top choices for tailgating grills you’ll see at the Georgia Dome and other stadiums in the south.
Char-Griller Grillin’ Pro
This is a grill that you could find on any patio or deck, but it’s also a perfect grill for your tailgate. This is a durable gas grill housed in steel with 630 total inches of cooking space so you can cook multiple kinds of meat at one time. The Char-Griller comes with “three stainless-steel burner tubes that generate a total of 40,800 BTUs, plus a 12,000-BTU side burner for heating up sauces and sides.” It’s easy to start, easy to clean and the wheels make it easy for loading and unloading. Utensil hooks are included so you won’t lose anything while the meat is cooking. The Char-Griller is a no-nonsense grill that gets the job done.
Big Green Egg
Want to attract some attention to you tailgate party? Get there early and get a rotisserie grill going. The Carson Rotisserie 7- Skewer is the perfect size for football tailgates. It can hold “seven rotating skewers which evenly cook and self-baste meats, veggies and fruits over an open flame.” The metal case is surprisingly light so it’s very mobile. The removable charcoal pan, rechargeable battery and adapter give you flexibility to use this no matter the size of your party. It is especially great for chicken, Cornish game hens, leg of lamb or pork tenderloin.
Weber Smokey Joe
Affordable and easy to use, the venerable Weber Smokey Joe coal grill should be a tailgate staple. This grill has been around longer than the hula hoop, but it still turns out great steaks, burgers and brats with minimal effort. It’s small enough to transport but big enough to get the job done. You control the airflow and the heat, and beacuse of its small size, it uses less charcoal than a standard charcoal grill. Weber has been one of the biggest names in grills for 50 years and with a timeless model like the Smokey Joe, it will have no problem reaching another 50. You can usually find this grill sold for about $35.
Infrareds are the latest in grilling technology because they heat up fast and cook evenly. Companies like Solaire make models that are easy to transport and use propane or natural gas so they cook quickly. With this kind of speed, you’ll be able to get into the game for the “National Anthem” and pre-game introductions. You’ll pay a little more for this technology, but it’s worth it.
Check out Tailgate Fan to keep the party going at tailgatefan.cbslocal.com.
Rick Limpert is a freelance writer/photographer in Atlanta and he loves covering anything Falcons-related. His work can be found at Examiner.com.