Friday, December 04, 2020

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How to Throw the Perfect Memorial Day BBQ!

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The kick-off to the summer BBQ season is here, so fire up the grill and break out everything in the al fresco department.

Page Hardware & Appliance Co. in Guilford carries everything you could possibly imagine for the perfect party – grills, fire pits, furniture, serving pieces, bug avoidance goods, lawn and garden goodies – so one stop at Page's before the grocery store and you're ready to start summer with a bang.

Hardware Manager John Creaser knows what to look for in a grill ... and what to pick up throughout the store. Right outside of Page's you'll see beautiful Adirondack chairs in different colors. While easy to care for colorful plastic varieties aren't new, Adirondacks are now ergodynamic, so you and your back can sit around the fire pit (or wherever) for hours.  Fire pits, he points out, are perfect for outdoor entertaining. Page's carries the Moon & Star, not a huge variety only because "that's a good one that people like."

Creaser's specialty is grills. The appliance department offers elaborate grills made by kitchen companies that can be built into the outdoor living space, and the hardware department offers traditional grills ranging from $35 up to $2499. Page's carries natural gas grills, propane grills, charcoal grills, and smokers that use a combination of wood and charcoal.

Creaser reports, "Some of the grills have many features including infrared burners with built-in motors for rotisseries, side burners, and built-in smoker boxes with burners that give the food a good smoky flavor when you're cooking something like a roast." Grills come in all sizes, from 6-burner, 4-burner, 3-burner, 2-burner, down to single burner. Some are definitely for the patio, and then there are smaller grills that can be used at home or packed up for traveling.

"What I look for in a grill," he says, "is as many stainless steel parts as possible for durability and ease of cleaning up."

With the Blue Rhino propane exchange, customers can pick up a full tank and exchange their tank when it's empty. Customers can also purchase an empty tank for refills. "Blue Rhino is a bit more expensive than owning your own tank and refilling. However, there's the convenience, and the tank is always in good shape and always inspected."

Page's sells all-natural wood charcoal and classic briquettes. Some are self-igniting.

Creaser's favorite charcoal grill lighting method uses a chimney. He explains, "The chimney is a can with a handle on it. What you do is put as much charcoal as you're going to use in the chimney. There's a place in the bottom where you crumple up newspaper and then light it. After 15 minutes or so those coals are ready to use. In that way you haven't had to use any lighter fluid."

The Performer charcoal grill has a self-igniter. "It's got a propane tank attached to it and you just push a button to start the charcoal."

As far as what's hot for 2015, "Weber's MasterTouch offers loads of features including a special grate with which the cook can insert accessories such as a griddle or pizza stone."

And the small grill, the Weber Q 1200, is now available in "really sharp colors – blue, green, fuchsia, black, purple and orange, in addition to the traditional titanium."

After the grill is all set, it's time to pick up just a few other pieces for the perfect party. How about "Tiki torches that keep bugs away in the immediate area and look really cool?" How about picnic baskets (some collapsible ones) and beautiful serving trays, table cloths, ice buckets, ice chests and coolers, serving dishes, folding tables and nice aprons?

How about all kind of fertilizers and grass seed to grow a lush, green lawn?

For the uninvited guests, there's insect repellents and foggers that last up to six hours.

Page's carries outdoor toys and equipment, including Frisbees, rocket sets, and balls that light up for use at night. There are also wristbands that light up so you know who is on what team (at night). And for the party pet, Page's carries supplies and pet toys. Everyone should have a memorable BBQ and summer.

Tips for Great Grilling:

  • A three-burner grill makes indirect cooking easier. A roast, for example, is easier to cook on a three-burner grill rather than a two-burner.

  • Let the grill heat up for about 15 minutes before you cook anything.

  • Always have a good brush for brushing off the grates.

  • Clean your grates while they're hot.

  • Have two propane tanks so you can swap over when you're low.

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