Grilling: Gas vs. Charcoal

I never thought that in the great state of Texas my preference to grilling with
charcoal would be met with ridicule. But I guess it’s to be expected as the
person handing out the shade was probably working for comission and was trying
to push some more expensive grill.

This post stemmed from an interaction I had earlier today at a local Home Depot.
As we just moved, and I left my grill, I was in need of a new one. I was
debating on either grabbing the same Weber grill I had back in Tampa (that has
served me exceptionally well mind you) or this small non-Weber brand oil barrel
style grill / smoker.

When asked if I was in the market for a new grill, I let the dude know that I
was and mentioned that I was leaning towards picking up one of the charcoal
Weber models. The shit for brains immediately asked if I was leaning towards the
charcoal grill because of the price.

I don’t claim to be a grill master, but I do know my way around the flame. I
favor charcoal because I find it to be a more organic process. Sure it takes
longer, but I feel a bit more connected to it. Gas to me is the equivalent of
turning on the stove and I already have a gas stove.

I was a bit taken back by this because being in the Capital of Texas, I would
have expected there to be more love towards charcoal than gas. Convenience wins
all, I suppose.

More interesting is another person came up to me as I was trying to figure out
the size of the cover I needed for my new grill (I went with the grill / smoker
combo BTW). I guess he was the other sales guy, and he was curious as to why I
preferred charcoal.

I let him know that I had been cooking exclusively on it for over 15 years
(which I suspect was well more than half the kid’s age) and that I wasn’t
interested in the convenience of gas as grilling for me was an event.

He said he understood that, and then tried to sway me on some electric, wood
pellet burning nonsense contraption. Gotta be fucking kidding me.

I dismissed him fairly quick as he didn’t seem interested in helping me figure
out which cover was going to go best with my new grill / smoker. Safe bet the
kid was a rep for the company he was trying to schlep and not even a Home Depot
employee (no orange aporn or anything)

That all being said, to answer the question of which is better, charcoal or gas,
the answer is probably wood. I personally don’t use it enough, but either a
combo of wood and charcoal or just hard wood is always an exceptional

Mind you, I am describing this as an experience, and that’s what I feel that
people that cook with gas are trying to avoid. They want to cook food outside
but they want to be able to cook it in a timely fashion. Charcoal and wood are
never that, they are a very primal medium and they time.

But the truth is, the only correct cooking fuel if the one that you prefer. And
I’m certain that just that every pit master in America would completely disagree
with that statement 🙂

Josh Sherman - The Man, The Myth, The Avatar

About Josh

Husband. Father. Pug dad. Musician. Founder of Holiday API, Head of Engineering and Emoji Specialist at Mailshake, and author of the best damn Lorem Ipsum Library for PHP.

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