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How to Choose the BBQ Thatís Right for You

03/23/2017, 10:15am EDT
By Thomas Sharpe - President of Sharpe Foods

When it comes to outdoor entertaining, or just enjoying a hot summer's day, the barbeque is an important part of the whole experience.  Whether youíre looking for portable and disposable models, or a stainless steal, state-of-the-art appliance with all of the latest gadgets, there are always a swath of different barbeques for your perusal.  

Remember, it isn't just your cooking skills that will dictate the success of your barbequed meals, but also choosing the proper barbeque to cater to your outdoor cooking needs and desires.

Thomas Sharpe Brampton Master Chef and Mississauga Master Chef and Mississauga News and Mississauga gazette with Mississauga Newspaper and Bonnie Crombie Mississauga Mayor

After all, little is more wasteful than paying good money for added features that you'll never use, or having to try to make dinner for fifteen people on a one square foot grill.  Therefore, before heading out to the barbeque store, or even before shopping around online, you will need to consider the different elements that should dictate your final BBQ decision.

Among the most important factors to remember are:

a. How much you want to spend
b. How many people you'll usually be cooking for
c. How much space you have in your garden for cooking
d. How (and if) you'll be storing it in the winter

Once you have these answers figured out, you'll be able to start thinking about the different barbeque types that are available to you.  

If you'll only be cooking occasionally, and on a smaller scale, disposable barbecues ñ foil trays with their own charcoal and lighter paper may be exactly what you're looking for. These are very simple to light, and will burn well for enough time to cook any reasonable meal.  These are ideal for cooking in small spaces, or cooking on a picnic (where fires are permitted), but should not be your selection if you are looking into serious outdoor cookery.

Charcoal and gas barbeques come in many different shapes and sizes and are frequently collapsible for easy storage.  Some are on casters, and while others require around 5 feet of patio space, others need less than half of that.  Though some have side burners, rotisseries, griddles, hot plates, and other food warming gadgets, it's important to consider the basics first, and build from there.

First, check out the cooking space.  Will the space be large enough to handle what youíll likely be cooking?  Next, have a look at the size of the entire barbeque.  Remember that you'll not only need to have enough room for it, but also for yourself to work around it, as well as tables for holding your accessories, marinades, sauces, uncooked food, and naturally, for the people who will be eating your masterpieces.  Remember that you'll also need enough space in your garage or shed to store the barbeque during the winter.

Your barbeque should be tough enough to handle the great outdoors, as well as the wear and tear that you'll inflict upon it.  This means sturdy construction, metal work, and corrosion resistant paint and fittings.  A cover is often very beneficial to keep out a spurt of rain, so you might consider that a good investment.

Lastly, have a look at the ease of lighting, cleaning, and charcoal removal.  After that, all you need to consider is the color and overall appearance of the barbeque, and how it will compliment your garden.


Thomas Sharpe
President of Sharpe Foods
& Food Writer
Mississauga Gazette


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