Sunday, July 11, 2010

So today is the day... damn it!

In a few minutes I will sail forth to purchase my grill. I have decided. No more delays. Today is the day. The grill will be on my balcony tonight, or I will die trying. Failure is not an option.

I am greatly disturbed that I didn't get it done yesterday. I sailed forth yesterday afternoon with the same mission. I failed through no fault of my own. Four local Weber dealers all insisted that they had Genesis S-320s in stock. When I walked through the door of each establishment, they had Genesis E-310, or all their units were powered by Natural Gas (methane not propane). All these fools tried to tell me it didn't matter, and they tried to talk me into seeing the manager about a natural gas mod to the balcony.

This proves, once again, that the salesman is the natural adversary of the consumer. They play bait-N-switch like crazy. If they can't up-sell you they will push rubbish on you. They really don't care what is appropriate for you. It's all about the business. We need to liquidate our stock, and we are going to push it on you.

For the record the S-320 was carefully chosen, for an assortment of reasons. Propane was carefully chosen for chemical and energetic reasons. I have no intention of selecting a methane powered E-310, or being up-sold to massively expensive Summit, no matter how much I might like the grill.

The difference between the S-320 and and E-310 are several in number:
  1. S means stainless steel grills. E means enameled cast iron grills. Normally, I prefer the enameled cast iron. Not in this case. This is a special case. The devices used to scrub grills will strip the enameled cast iron of its porcelain very quickly. Stainless is the way to go in this application.
  2. The 320 has a side-burner. The 310 does not. This matters in Paella making. You know I am into paella making. The 310 will fit my paella. There is no place to put the chicken or beef broth to simmer it. The workflow for paella is simple. You have the paella on the grill. You have a 5 quart dutch oven on a burner simmering. You add hot broth to the paella as necessary throughout the entire cooking process. When the salesfuck tells me the lack of side burner doesn't matter, he is making a stupid comment from an ignorant position. It matters a lot.
  3. The S-320 is endorsed by every critical authority on the web. They love it. It gets massive scores. The E-310 is not massively endorsed. It gets good but not sensational scores. That is a difference that makes a big difference. There is unanimous election of the S-320. There is a mixed greeting for the E-310.
I was very frustrated and tired last night. I went to bed at 11:00pm, which is an unprecedented early hour for me; especially on Saturday night. I rolled this problem over many times before bed and woke up with some clarity.

One vendor offered me an S-310 limited edition with stainless steel grills for the good price of $670. Believe it or not, that is a pretty good deal. This vendor also offers Solaire. I am going to work a package deal for the Solaire portable infrared grill and the S-310. The Solaire will be my searer and side-burner. The S-310 will be my main cookware platform.

I am satisfied that this is a good plan. It should come in a just about $1,000 USD. It should function better than the Weber Spirit, a solution that is at least $400 more expensive. I will get a very-high BTU infrared grill capable of some stupidly high temperatures. I will have one of the top-ranked main grills on the market. This should be great.

I can't wait to sear a steak on the Solaire and finish it inside a Dutch Oven on the Weber. It should be fantastic. Of course, the Solaire utterly destroys the Weber side-burner. It's not even close. It is also a hell of a lot hotter than you need it to be, if you want to simmer chicken broth in an iron pot. That's not such a big problem. I can live with it.