If you are looking for the perfect grill to be the star of your backyard soiree, it is important to do some research before you make your purchase. "You can pay a lot for a poor-quality grill," said Lu Dos Santos owner of Alltown Gas Grills & Propane in Weymouth, Mass.

If you are looking for the perfect grill to be the star of your backyard soiree, it is important to do some research before you make your purchase. "You can pay a lot for a poor-quality grill," said Lu Dos Santos owner of Alltown Gas Grills & Propane in Weymouth, Mass.


Dos Santos said grills made in the U.S. often are made of better materials that last much longer than their foreign counterparts. Weber is a popular brand of grills that can last for 10 years or more.


Dos Santos said that grills sold at big-box stores for $150 and less are often made from lesser-quality metals that, once heated, can warp or even melt, causing the cooking grates to fall into the flame.


Dos Santos said to be wary of grills with a flat bottom as they do not allow the grease to collect properly, causing flare-ups.


Dos Santos said many people are fooled by marketing and pay more for a lesser-quality grill. The amount of BTUs, or the amount of gas that a grill uses, won't have any affect on the temperature. Look for a grill that can reach 600 degrees Fahrenheit.


One of the benefits of purchasing your grill from a smaller shop is that it can come fully assembled at no extra charge.


Sean Curry, president of Curry Hardware, said that about 95 percent of the grills sold at his store are propane models, but they do carry natural gas models - as well as electric grills that range in price from $100 to $200 for people who live in apartments and can't have a gas grill because of fire codes.


The most popular models sold at his store are the Weber Spirit, priced between $500 and $550, and the Weber Genesis, which costs around $1,000.


Curry suggests you choose a grill based on how you plan to use it. If you are cooking for a family of 10, it would make sense to go with a larger model, but if you are cooking the occasional hot dog and hamburger, you might not need a top-of-the-line model.


The Patriot Ledger


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GAS GRILL MAINTENANCE


Wipe the outside of the grill lid with a paper towel and cleaner.


Use a glass cleaner for porcelain-coated lids and stainless steel cleaner for stainless steel lids. 


Clean side tables with a microfiber towel and stainless steel cleaner.


When your grill is completely cool, remove your cooking grates and bars. Then, using a stainless steel grill brush, remove all excess grease and debris from inside the cook box to the bottom tray. 


It's a good practice to burn off any food residue left on your grill by turning all your burners to high for 15 minutes before and after grilling. If you have cast iron grates, remove them before doing so. When your grill reaches these high temperatures, food debris will turn to ash, and will then be easy to brush off using a stainless steel bristle brush. 


Source: Curry Hardware