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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:16 PM   #16
rwalters
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aawa View Post
Convenience and practicality over "best setup" A lot of restaurants use gas grills because they just have to light the gas and it is good for the night.
I would agree that there is MUCH truth in that statement... but that doesn't change the fact that a nice restaurant, cooking over gas, has the ability to turn out crazy-good food.


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Originally Posted by aawa View Post
There is a restaurant in Va Beach, VA called Fire and Vine. The concept is all woodburning appliance w/ a great selection of wine. Woodburning pizza oven, wood burning stove/oven, wood burning grill. The smell when you walk into that restaurant is amazing. However the amount of work they have to do to get the fires started as well as the clean up is much more labor intensive vs a normal kitchen with gas appliances.
Is it the smoke from the wood you are smelling? Or the food cooking? Reason I ask, is because I think most steak houses have an amazing smell upon entering...
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:20 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by f308gt4 View Post
I've done a side to side with a Ribeye cooked on my Gas Grill (a BBQ-Galore Turbo model) vs one cooked on the BGE.

Basically, the steaks were seared for about 2 minutes on each side, then heat was turned down, and they were cooked to medium. Maybe a total of ~10 minutes cook time, IIRC.

The charcoal made a slight difference in the taste, which I wasn't expecting for a relatively short cook. I really thought that there wouldn't be any difference.

I prefer the charcoal taste. But, the one cooked on my gas grill was damn good too.

So yes, there is a difference in my hands, but it was slight. And both steaks were good.
Steak cooked to Medium? Should be banned!! lol

I have a Gasser, Weber Performer Charcoal and Stickburner Smoker and when I cook steak, usualyl NY Strip or Tenderloin I do it on the Gasser on my Grill Grates (which are awesome) since the meat is on the grill for 5min at most I don't see the point in firing up the Weber. Not to mention the amount of charcoal needed to get 700+ degree temp on the charcoal for 2 tenderloin steaks seems a little crazy.

Now if my wife ever let me buy a small Egg, that might change but only on the weekend when I have time.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:22 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by rwalters View Post
OK... so it appears that the majority believe there is a difference, even if it is just a subtle difference...

That leads me to ask a few more questions then...

1) Why do high-end restaurants, that can afford the best of "setups", grill over gas?

Efficiency, ease of operation, less training, cheaper.

2) I have done my fair share of charcoal grilling over the years... and I get just as many "this food is great" comments whether I cook on gas or charcoal... in fact my last steak cook was done over gas, and was probably some of the best tasting steak I have ever done.

3) When grilling w/ high heat... it seems everyone claims they can taste a touch of smoke... I don't think that smokey taste if coming from fuel source, but rather fat dripping?? Not sure, but I think. If I am correct, I get the SAME smoky taste using Grill Grates on my Genesis.

You are correct in that most of the "smoky flavor" in a steak cooked over either gas or charcoal comes from the juices/fat dripping out and hitting the burner or coals, then smoking up. I can tell a major difference in flavor between cooking over wood, but not so much with charcoal. Charcoal briquettes have a nasty, acrid odor and flavor when first lit, but add pretty much no flavor at all after they've turned white. They're a clean source of heat, just like gas. Again, all the "smoky" taste cooking over briquettes comes from dripping fat hitting the coals. Lump charcoal is made from wood, and has some flavor of its own, enough to tell a difference. Actual hardwood coals from burning down wood add a lot of flavor to what ever you're cooking. To me, pretty much no difference in taste between gas and briquettes unless you throw some wood chunks on the briquettes for smoke. A noticable difference between gas and lump, and a big difference in taste between gas and wood.

Just my .02, and I won't turn down a good steak cooked either way.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:26 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwalters View Post
I would agree that there is MUCH truth in that statement... but that doesn't change the fact that a nice restaurant, cooking over gas, has the ability to turn out crazy-good food.




Is it the smoke from the wood you are smelling? Or the food cooking? Reason I ask, is because I think most steak houses have an amazing smell upon entering...
I definitely agree about cooking over gas you can put out good food. Cooking over gas gives you the most stable temperatures to cook with period. More stable than coals and electric. Putting out good food is a product of a good cook/chef and not the quality of the tools. I can put out a great dinner using 1 hot plate, 1 pan, and a toaster oven.

And I would smell the wood and not the food. I worked as a Point of Sales installer/trainer and would in restaurants before/after business hours. So there would be no food cooking, just the staff getting everything ready for opening.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:27 PM   #20
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My steaks take 4 minutes to medium rare on my gas catalytic burner and traditional grates. I cook steak too often, year round, to use my charcoal grill on a near daily basis. PITA with rain falling and dinner needing to be on the table. I won't disagree with the charcoal or "smoke kissed" crowd, but other than my shirt smelling like smoke I can't tell much difference. Oh, and my gasser is ready to go and finished/shut down before charcoal would even be ready to start and I use the burner for the sauteed onions and shrooms and/or green beans with garlic. What ever floats you boat is the way to go. YMMV!
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:27 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smokin' Frenchman View Post
I have a Gasser, Weber Performer Charcoal and Stickburner Smoker and when I cook steak, usualyl NY Strip or Tenderloin I do it on the Gasser on my Grill Grates (which are awesome) since the meat is on the grill for 5min at most I don't see the point in firing up the Weber. Not to mention the amount of charcoal needed to get 700+ degree temp on the charcoal for 2 tenderloin steaks seems a little crazy.
So, are you in my corner bro?? A 5-10 (even 15-20) minute HOT cook does not make a difference in the finished product?? In my experience, cooking on a Weber gasser w/ Grill Grates generates an OUTSTANDING "grilled" product!!!!! As good as any charcoal cooker that I have used... IMO.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:41 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwalters View Post
So, are you in my corner bro?? A 5-10 (even 15-20) minute HOT cook does not make a difference in the finished product?? In my experience, cooking on a Weber gasser w/ Grill Grates generates an OUTSTANDING "grilled" product!!!!! As good as any charcoal cooker that I have used... IMO.
Yes, agreed.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:42 PM   #23
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Boom. Charcoal.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 12:54 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chad View Post
My steaks take 4 minutes to medium rare on my gas catalytic burner and traditional grates. I cook steak too often, year round, to use my charcoal grill on a near daily basis. PITA with rain falling and dinner needing to be on the table. I won't disagree with the charcoal or "smoke kissed" crowd, but other than my shirt smelling like smoke I can't tell much difference. Oh, and my gasser is ready to go and finished/shut down before charcoal would even be ready to start and I use the burner for the sauteed onions and shrooms and/or green beans with garlic. What ever floats you boat is the way to go. YMMV!
Another moment of honesty... I also will not disagree with the charcoal or "smoke kissed" crowd... but I seriously cannot tell much, if any difference.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 01:06 PM   #25
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I have never owned or cooked on a gasser that could make the BTUs I get from coals on my Weber kettles. So, I don't get the quick char I like on my steaks.

As for grilling up chicken parts, seafood, brats or burgers, I'm okay with gas. That kind of grilling doesn't require very high heat.

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Unread 01-08-2013, 01:10 PM   #26
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You can cook meat without charcoal?!?!?
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Unread 01-08-2013, 01:14 PM   #27
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I have never owned or cooked on a gasser that could make the BTUs I get from coals on my Weber kettles. So, I don't get the quick char I like on my steaks. CD
Curious... how hot do you take the kettles before throwing down a steak? With Grill Grates, I have no problem hitting an easy 650-700 (could take it even hotter with the sear burner if I want too), leaving crazy grill marks and a to die for crust.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 01:17 PM   #28
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You can cook meat without charcoal?!?!?
Absolutely... ever heard of a microwave??
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Unread 01-08-2013, 01:24 PM   #29
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Charcoal/wood mix and it's not even close.
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Unread 01-08-2013, 01:27 PM   #30
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Assuming you aren't using wood smoke in your charcoal, and assuming you can achieve similar temperatures (which I am unable to do on my gas grill), i.e., so we are comparing like with like, I really don't think it makes a discernible difference. Maybe my palate isn't as refined as others here. That said, I like a kiss of smoke, and my gas grill doesn't get anywhere near as hot as my OTG, so I use the gasser primarily for convenience, for extra space when needed, and for veggies.
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