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For someone who is looking to buy a grill, the myriad of options can be quite confusing. It is very easy to accidentally get a grill that will provide a cooking experience or taste that is nothing at all like what the buyer was looking for. For instance, if someone was inspired by cooking from a charcoal grill, then found a great deal on a gas grill, they could be sorely disappointed as the flavour the charcoal provides may have been what they were looking for. Other types of grills include wood and electric grills, and some are also smokers.
The least expensive grill is generally going to be the small metal charcoal heated type. These are fairly simple with a charcoal powered fire underneath, a small metal grate to hold the meat, and a lid to cover the grill and promote more thorough cooking. These simple grills can have added features like wheels and stands, but they are generally fairly generic.
On the complete opposite side of the spectrum are grills with included side tables and prep areas along with advanced starting features such as electricity or propane used to heat charcoal or wood. These are ideal for cooking food for large numbers of people, or for just convincing people that the cook really knows what he is doing.
There is, and will likely always be contention over which type of fuel is best. Some people claim to be able to taste the propane used in many natural gas grills, while others prefer its cleaner heat and lack of soot and feel the flavor provided is purer than other methods. Charcoal is popular at both the low and high end of the grill spectrum and is what many people are talking about when they mention wanting a “grilled flavour”. Downsides to charcoal grills include the sometimes arduous task of getting the coals to light along with the simple fact that in order to use charcoal, one has to deal with charcoal, which can be very messy and awkward. Electric grills are a good compromise, but they are limited mostly to indoor tabletop grills that do not provide the same flavor of the outdoor grills, nor do they normally have enough space to cook food for large numbers of people, though there are some exceptions.
It is always wise to do research before making a purchase, but in this case, even more so. If the buyer is going after a certain flavour that they tasted at the neighbor's outdoor grill, for example, it would be wise to ask that neighbour what type of fuel he or she uses. Otherwise there could be a lot of energy and money spent just to purchase the wrong thing.