Top 10 barbecue grills 2012

Published July 03, 2012

| Gayot

What better way to celebrate the arrival of warm weather than by grilling copious amounts of meat? So, if you’re looking to tap into your inner caveman and cook up some Flintstone-sized ribs, we’ve compiled a list of the top ten charcoal and gas grills — ranging from the tried and true Weber One-Touch to the super sleek and ultra-efficient Napoleon Mirage — to help you get started on your carnivorous quest. Finding ribs large enough to tip your car over though, is up to you to find. We can't do everything! And while we're on the subject, be prepared to work up an appetite if you get a barbecue grill shipped to you, as there is often some assembly required. 

Click here for reviews of the grills below

Broil King Crown 90
Price: $549
Cooking system: Liquid Propane or Natural Gas
Features:
40,000 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 635 sq. in.

If there were a grilling monarch, the Broil King Crown 90 would mostly likely be among his most prized crown jewels. This grill combines an incredible amount of unique features in a unit that's very fairly priced. It has a stainless steel "Infinity Burner" for searing, a stainless steel side burner and a rear rotisserie burner. It also features stainless steel "Flav-R-Waves" to help capture and instantly vaporize juices, aluminum exterior, built-in temperature gauge and "Sure-Lite" electronic ignition system. But the crème de la crème has to be the multi-position porcelain-coated cast iron cooking grids. Cast iron cookware has been prized among chefs for hundreds of years because it has the ability to withstand and maintain very high cooking temperatures, making it perfect for quickly searing quality meats.

Bull Outdoor Products: Bison Stainless Steel Grill Head 
Price: $1,354
Cooking system: Charcoal
Features:

Cooking area of 589 sq. in.

Okay, so you're keen on keeping your grill in one place. However, now you have to cross that much-debated line in the sand: do you join the future and choose propane? Or do you journey back to the days of yore and choose charcoal? Well, sorry Hank Hill, but many believe that charcoal is the best choice. Propane may be more convenient, but charcoal creates more smoke, and thus provides additional flavor. With that said, if you're in the market for a built-in charcoal grill, look no further than the Bison Stainless Steel Grill. It features an ample amount of grilling space, air control vents on the hood and firebox, easy-to-clean charcoal bins, temperature gauge and stainless steel construction. The grill also has a unique feature that allows you to manually adjust the elevation of the coal. Make sure to follow these Top 10 Grilling Tips

Char-Broil Quantum Infrared Urban Grill
Price: $299
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

Two burners
21,000 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 320 sq. in.

Behold the future of grilling. Okay, that might be a stretch, but the Char-Broil Quantum Infrared Urban Grill uses a revolutionary type of new cooking system (known as the "Quantum Infrared" system) that will definitely change the grilling game. Just above each burner is a specialized "Infrared" surface; when the grill is turned on, these surfaces absorb the heat and radiate it evenly throughout the entire grilling area. This technology not only eliminates those bothersome hot and cold grilling spots, but it also allows the burners to retain a broader range of heat: from intense and searing to low and slow. In addition, because of the nature of the surfaces, the Quantum only requires two burners, saving you both space and gas. As if that weren't enough, the grill also features a stainless steel exterior, folding side shelves and a "Surefire" electronic ignition system.

Char-Griller 3001 Grillin' Pro
Price: $199
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

Three burners
40,800 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 630 sq. in.

Originally, Char-Griller made charcoal grills and smokers, but recently the company started manufacturing propane grills as well. The distinctive shape of the Grillin' Pro alludes to its original design as a charcoal smoker, but it happens to work perfectly as a gas grill. It features a heavy-steel construction, wonderful porcelain-coated cast iron grates, dual ventilation stacks for heating, warming rack, side burner, stainless steel thermometer and a large side shelf for storing utensils. The Char-Griller 3001 Grillin' Pro is on par with other similar-sized backyard grills on this list, but it sells for a fraction of their price, which makes it an excellent buy. 

Coleman 9949-750 Road Trip Grill LXE 175
Price: $160
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

Two burners
10,000 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 285 sq. in.

Just because a grill has wheels doesn't mean it's portable. If you're on the road, you may need a grill that's ultra compact, as well as light and mobile. Look no further than the Coleman Road Trip Grill LXE. This nifty little grill has a large grilling space, as well as two folding side tables and a matchless ignition system. However, if you need to move, the grill folds down to a fraction of its size and can be stored easily in a backseat or trunk. The grill also has a very convenient pull handle and durable all-weather wheels. It operates off of a 16.4 oz propane tank, which means the grill can last for up to 1.1 hours with both burners on full or 4.5 hours with both burners on low. If you're going on a road trip or camping out and need an ultra-portable grill, the Coleman LXE is our recommendation.

Ducane Affinity Series 4100
Price: $341
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

Four stainless steel burners
48,000 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 639 sq. in.

You're bent on starting your own Peter Luger steakhouse in your backyard, but you're a bit tight on cash. Never fear, Ducane is here! The Ducane 4100 series is a truly high-end grill that isn't priced like one. It features several porcelain-enameled heat distribution plates, an ultra-quick electronic ignition system, stainless steel rod cooking grates, a built-in thermometer and two scratch-resistant working surfaces. The 4100 series is a great buy for an avid griller looking for a professional barbecue that's priced affordably.

Napoleon: BIM605RBI Mirage 605 Built-In Grill
Price: $1,269
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

Five burners
79,500 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 850 sq. in

Not everything needs to be so mobile these days, especially grills. So, if you're looking to keep your barbecue in one location, the Napoleon Mirage 605 Built-In Grill is the right grill for you. It features a high-intensity ceramic infrared bottom burner for searing, stainless steel sear plates to help eliminate drippings, temperature gauge, automatic ignition, backlit control knobs and full-width removable drip pan for easy maintenance. But the best thing about the Mirage? Well, that has to be all of the optional accessories. Because it's a built-in grill, you can customize your individual Mirage with a whole slew of fun toys depending upon your available space: additional burners, an optional rotisserie, storage drawers and so on. Who says the future is all about portability?

PGS A30 Cast Aluminum Grill
Price: $887
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

30,000 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 330 sq. in.

If you're looking for a propane grill for your apartment patio, but it's kind of a tough fit, make sure to check out the venerable PGS A30. It's a small but powerful grilling machine, which features a "sure start" electronic ignition system, dual controlled "H" burner, warming rack, aluminum exterior and ceramic "Moon Rok" system that ensures even heat distribution throughout the entire grilling surface. (No moons were harmed in the making of this product.) You can also choose between a bolt-down patio post, or a more portable base if you like to do your grilling on the run.

Weber Genesis E-330
Price: $799
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

Three stainless steel burners
38,000 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 637 sq. in.

As the originator of the often-imitated kettle grill, Weber has been pushing the boundaries of barbecue since founder George Stephen first got in the business of grilling back in 1952. While the Genesis E-330 lacks the distinctive spherical shape of its predecessors, this gas grill continues the Weber tradition of innovation with its spacious 637 square inches of cooking area that includes a side burner, sear station and warming rack. The E-330 is easy to light and quick to warm up thanks to an electronic ignition system, and three stainless steel burners provide even heat at all temperatures. A reliable fuel gauge ensures that this Weber won't go dry on you at parties without warning.

Weber 2780301 Summit S-670 Stainless Steel Grill
Price: $2,499
Cooking system: Liquid Propane Gas
Features:

Six stainless steel burners
60,000 BTU-per-hour input
Cooking area of 769 sq. in.

First established in 1952, Weber has grown to become one of the top manufacturers and exporters of barbecue grills throughout the world. The Summit S-670 is Weber's grilling pièce de résistance for a reason — it's top-of-the line. It features a flawless stainless steel exterior, authentic smoker box and burner, rotisserie system with an infrared burner and LED fuel scale, high-powered sear station and "Flavorized" bars to catch juices and create smoke (to lock in flavors) while preventing bothersome flare-ups. It even has lighted control knobs for those stealthy night grilling sessions. Sure, it's the most expensive grill on our list, but it embodies efficiency, and carries with it the reputation of one of the most respected and oldest grill manufactures in the world.

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