What’s your type? A quick guide to grilling personas

When it comes to grilling, everybody’s got a type. You may prefer the tried and true techniques from days of yore. Perhaps you close your eyes and flip through a cookbook, letting your finger (and fate) decide what’s cookin’ tonight. Or maybe you don’t like to be defined: one day you’re dabbling in molecular gastronomy and the next you’re French flambéing and sautéing with the best of the classically trained. Luckily, a Memphis Grill is perfectly suited to any cooking preference. Read below to determine which grilling persona fits you best.

Barbecue Traditionalist

I grill, therefore I am.” – Alton Brown

Your dad was a BBQer. Your dad’s dad was a BBQer. Your dad’s dad’s dad was a BBQer. Essentially, mesquite runs in your blood, down your face, and pretty much anywhere else you’ll let it. When it comes to nouveau grill cooking, you have one thought: Why fix what is so obviously (and deliciously) not broken?

Fuel: For the Traditionalist, the fuel used to power your grill is of the utmost importance. You’ve probably used charcoal to grill in the past, but you are now a firm believer in the power of 100% natural wood. And not just any old wood plopped into any old grill. When it comes right down to it, if you had it your way (and why not?), you would hand-dig your own trench, chop up your own wood and start that fire using nothing more than a flint, pine needles, and a little ingenuity.

Recipe: Bring a store-bought barbecue sauce to a Traditionalist’s barbecue and you might as well have told them their mother is ugly and punched them in the gut. Sticking to homemade, award-winning mops, marinades and sauces are what it’s all about. All barbecue had to originate somewhere, and as far as you’re concerned, it was in your family’s backyard.

Barbecue Modernist

I updated my grilling app, iGrill, today and it now has Facebook integration that lets you see what other people are grilling right now around the world. Awesome.” –Mark Zuckerberg

You pride yourself on innovation. The new, unique, wacky – send it your way and you’re sure to create some BBQ magic. The mad scientist of the grill, you’re not hindered by passed-down recipes and techniques.  For you, barbecue is an experiment and you forge your own grilling path. 

Flavor: If coleslaw, potato salad, and freshly cut watermelon have you yawning, if phrases like “tangy & sweet” or “hot & smoky” cause your head to droop, and if the idea of barbecuing a brisket bores the pants off you, Modernist is the way to go. Select innovative chefs across the country serve “smoke-vide” ribs, pair barbecue with quinoa and spiced crème fraîche, and accompany smoked risotto with gelled IPA beer cubes. And chances are if you’ve already slapped your laptop shut and run out to the grill to try your hand at one of these ideas, the Modernist streak in you runs deep.

Tech: Slaving away in front of a hot grill, tongs in hand, is not the idea of a Modernist’s day of fun. When the world gives you technology, why not use it to your advantage? Take gadgets like the iGrill and Grillbot for example. Modernists will have plenty of time to share their favorite trending Vine videos on the latest smartphone while handy gadgets do the rest. And while the Traditionalist wouldn’t dream of straying from straight wood fuel, a Modernist loves the innovation wood pellets bring to the table. 

Barbecue Memphisist

I love the culture of grilling. It creates an atmosphere that is festive but casual.” –Bobby Flay

As far as we’re concerned, a Memphisist (just trust us on the spelling) is the best of both worlds. You use your mom’s brisket recipe, but add in a bit of your very own top-secret spice combo. Our Intelligent Temperature Control system is your best friend, but you wouldn’t dream of letting a robot clean your baby (i.e. your grill). For you, there’s no need to reject the new just because it’s “hip”, and why pooh-pooh that seventy-year-old BBQ sauce recipe when there’s obviously something great about it?

Fresh or antique – it makes no difference to you as long as it tastes damn fine. You do it, and you do it your way. Grill on, Memphisist, grill on. 

And don’t let the wonderful pastimes of grilling and barbecuing cause a riff between you and your smoke-loving brethren, because everybody knows, a picnic is no place for a rumble.

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