The Grill market is a difficult one to break into. But that's exactly what Broil King did. They're a relatively new company and they forced their way through to compete with the big boys of Grill manufacturing by mimicking what they did right, and correcting their flaws. Not a bad strategy and it's worked well in the recent past, so I thought I'd check out their new offering the Broil King 921154 Baron 320 Liquid Propane Gas Grill. It's not all good news but there's not a lot of bad news either. So let's get this show on the road.
by Broil King [Broil King]
- Easy to Clean
- 320 Inches Primary Cooking Space
- 120 Square Inches Secondary Space
- 3 Nice Burners with Interesting Designs
- Electric Ignition
- Good Value
- Assembly takes a long time
The measurements are 50 inches by 24 inches by 45.5 inches, so we're talking about a big unit here. It looks a lot like some of Char-Broils offerings with it's nice storage space underneath and fold out shelves. The shelves are white whereas the central unit including the cooking area and the storage is all black. I've no idea about the reason for this, but the black and white color certainly makes this Grill stand out from the crowd. There's 3 Knobs on the front for controlling each of the three Burners individually and the lid is easily accessible via a long Metal handle. The whole thing is made out of Stainless Steel and looks durable. I feel like I've spent my whole Grill reviewing life saying this, but the Wheels could have been better. It's a common error in Grill manufacturing. Other than that I liked the design.
We'll start of with the bad news. It's comes in parts and you have to put these together before you start Grilling. First you have to assemble the Cart using the nuts and bolts provided. Then the cooking area which comes in three pieces (Lid, Grill Top and Base) has to be assembled and connected. It's a 2 hour job but the instruction manual spells out pretty well what to do, so as long as you don't skip a step it'll be an easy task. It's just long and boring.
A Little Propane Grilling Fact
Propane Grills are hit or miss. The heating value of Natural Gas is generally strong enough for all Grills, but Propane Grills have to be made in a certain way in order to cook food quickly. This is because Natural Gas contains Butane, Propane and Ethane and the heating property's of Butane and Ethane are considerable. They'll always heat food fast. Propane meanwhile is Natural Gas in a raw form so the other ingredients aren't present meaning Grill design has to be dead on accurate for quick cooking times and excellent food. I'm happy to report that the design of the Broil King is conducive to fast cooking making this one of the 'hits' of the Propane Grilling world.
And a Few More Propane Facts
There are three reasons why 65% of American Grill owners prefer Propane once they've found a Propane Grill that'll cook fast and good.
Because Propane is Natural Gas in a purer form without all the other ingredients, it's much less harmful to breath in than ordinary Gas.
Propane is cheaper. People like to keep the money they have invested in the actual Grill, without having to plan for all the running costs of a Natural Gas Grill.
3 The Environment
Most people aren't planning to leave the modern world in favor of living in a commune out in the country with no running water or vehicles. But, if they possibly can, they'll try to do their bit for the environment and Propane is plain and simply better for the O-Zone Layer than normal Gas.
As well as being a Propane Grill it's also got 3 Burners running at a total of 30,000 BTU's an hour. Now, the Burners are interesting because they're not the round ones you might be used to. Instead, they're long and thin stretching all the way across the cooking surface from font to back. The entire surface of each burner will light up upon ignition providing a high and even heat for Grilling. It cooks fast because heat doesn't need to spread out along the Grates here. With these Burner strips covering the entire cooking area, heat simply needs to rise. Excellent Inclusion. The future of Burners? Maybe so...
How Much Room Do I Get?
Thank you or asking. I was coming to that. There's 320 Square Inches of primary cooking surface and another 120 Square inches of secondary space. Pretty good. Certainly not a large as some on the market for this price. But it represents fair value, plus the whole thing is lit up by an Electric Ignition for quick starts.
Should last a long time. The weight usually tells you all about the quality and the weight here is 135 pounds. So it's made out of good Stainless Steel and more importantly it looks and feels expensive. If I'm bring overly critical I'd say they could have built the storage drawers better. The hinges on the doors are slightly flimsy but this is a minor point. Overall durability is there and it's also covered in Porcelain-Enamel so it's easy to clean.
It's interesting because of the Burners. A common cause of late night meetings in the Grill manufacturing world are problems with heat dispersal. Terrific heat dispersal is needed for even cooking and it's often achieved by the use of expensive Grates that hold heat well. Here Broil King used long Burners that cover more of the cooking surface than the round ones, thereby avoiding the heat dispersal problem. I'm not saying there weren't frantic late night meetings. There should have been about the Wheels, but once you get cooking on this thing it seems effortlessly good. Heat builds up fast, which is unusual for a Propane Grill, and it remains at a high heat throughout your Grilling session. It's all down to those Burners. So, while the Assembly is long and boring and while the Wheels could have been better, this is a great purchase. Thank you for reading.