Thursday, December 10, 2009

Pictures from Murphysboro "Praise the Lard" Cookoff

In honor of tonight's 2nd episode of The Pitmasters (10:oopm est on TLC. This episode was filmed at the Murphysboro cookoff and we were there! Here are a few pictures to whet your appetite so to speak.

Susan and I attended this event (i.e. we did not vend or demo GrillGrates) so we really got to enjoy the atmosphere the entire weekend straight through to the award ceremony. Competition Barbecue is truly an interactive spectator sport. I learned a lot about "The Pits", careful preparation, and holy rituals. It also happened to be our 27th wedding anniversary- and a great weekend! I look forward to seeing how TLC spins it tonight.

Want a bit more? Here is a link to a YouTube video and a sneak peek of the Murphysboro Contest.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Greatest Gift of All (Part 2)

Now that I look back on it, I gave and received the same gift last year! Peace Love and Barbecue by Mike Mills and his daughter Amy. I met Mike and Amy at a Barbecue Competition just over a year ago. Mike, a legendary barbecue champion and restaurant owner comes by our stand and takes an interest in GrillGrates. He was anxious to try it and I gladly gave him a set. Next thing I know Rocky Danner (another colorful Barbecue Ambassador) is in our booth asking me for several more sets for he and Mike!

It turns out that Mike and Rocky were doing a series of demonstrations. Rocky was grilling bacon wrapped pork tenderloins and Mike was explaining how to do his championship ribs and had a stack of his books. He signed one for me and gave it to me in exchange for the Grates. Amy handed me a card and told me where to send more GrillGrates for Mike to “play with”. We received the gift of Peace, Love and Barbecue, last October and we gave the book as a gift this past Christmas to all our grilling friends.

Our friends loved Mike and Amy’s book! The 5-bean side has become a staple in our circle, as have Mike’s ribs. Peace, Love and Barbecue is a fabulous gift and really conveys the spirit of the industry, the people in it, along with some fabulous recipes. The book also provides a history of the American BBQ tradition alongside colorful encounters with local barbecue haunts. It was a great gift last year, now what to give this year?

  1. Instant Read Thermometer- This has got to be tops on my stocking stuffer list. I need to upgrade my cooking by temperature skills as evidenced by my half-cocked turkey on Thanksgiving! Glow in the Dark from $6.99
  2. BBQr’s Delight Gift Pack- This just might be the ticket for this Christmas. Craig Meathead Goldwyn of called BBQr’s Delight and GrillGrates- "Peanut butter and jelly because we go so well together." These all natural wood pellets impart just enough smoky flavor- and work fabulously on gas grills—especially with GrillGrates; just lay a few in the valleys of the GrillGrates and they smoke and smolder in natural wood flavors. The gift pack comes with a cast iron smoker box too. $19.99 with free shipping thru 12/19.
  3. KCBS Membership- The Kansas City Barbecue Society delivers a lot of bang for the buck. Contest and cook-off updates, product reviews and discounts and monthly Bull Sheet is packed with information and team competition updates. The Bull Sheet is up there with Salt Water Sportsman for me! $35 per year.

  4. GrillGrate Gift Bag- Our best value and a Grate Gift in its own right. Use the KCBS discount code and save 25% on all GrillGrate products through December 18th. $75 with KCBS discount.
Keep your grill and your griller warm this holiday season!

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Gratest Gift for an Egger! Thanks EggHead Paul!

As we were packing several gift orders of custom GrillGrates for the Big Green Egg and I reminded myself to thank EggHead Paul for helping me get GrillGrates into the wonderful green world of the BGE. This is a great lesson in product development:
  1. A customer sends you a picture of how they took a hack saw to your product and modified it to fit their needs.
  2. You show that picture to a BGE owner - in this case my buddie EggHead Paul
  3. Paul says I'd like one like that too and gets out his saw.
  4. Brad watches as Paul cuts GrillGrates. I take a few pictures...
  5. We get invited to the Annual Eggfest in Altanta and I take EggHead Paul as Wingman (and borrow his Egg to practice)
  6. Now I've been told that "We have the best gift you could give an Egger." That just came from an BGE owner who ordered two sets for each of his sons as Christmas Gifts.
And now as Paul Harvey says you know the rest of the story!

Thank You EggHead Paul!
and Thank You to all the loyal Big Green Egg customers out there who are grilling grate!

Oh, it didn't take a genius to figure out we needed to do this for rabid Weber customers too!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Pitmasters Debuts on TLC Tonight At 10:00PM

After playing groupie on the BBQ circuit for the past year I really look forward to seeing this show. Susan and I have met several of the fine folks featured in The Pitmasters. Barbecue is the next NASCAR and I really enjoy wandering around the pits at BBQ competitions. I also enjoy vending and demonstrating GrillGrates at these events... I would attend them all if I could! Susan has gotten into it too. You know you are a BBQ groupie when you spend your 27th wedding anniverary at a BBQ competition! We'll both be watching tomorrow night.

Santa- All I want for Christmas is a cool GrillGrate trailer to drag around of my own!

Friday, November 27, 2009

I almost fouled up the BIRD- Turkey Half Cocked!

This post falls under the category of telling on ones self! Yesterday I was a little too cocky taking the bird to the grill and made a few mistakes, a not so quick recovery and heard plenty of ribbing from the clan.

First I forgot to check the gas tank and of course it ran dry sometime during the first hour. Swapping it out would not be that big a deal if my igniter still worked, it doesn't so I have to remove a half of the grate, one of the flavorizer bars to manually light my gas grill. Not that big a deal except when the grill is hot, and I managed to re-light the grill only losing a few hairs on my hand.

We turned the bird upright after an hour and it was looking good. Two more hours and several bastings had me cocky again and testing the thigh temp- off it came for a 40 minute rest. We were very pleased by the juices and my bright idea of mashing up the veggies we had under the bird to add to the gravy. Add a little OXO and man the gravy was on the money.

Time to carve and I was ready, I even boned up re-watching helpful videos. I began by removing the legs. The first came away nicely only to reveal a too red inner core- RUT RO! The bird was NOT done. Now what? I had already begun dismembering and decided to keep going. Remove the legs and wings and cut out the breast meat and re-start the grill- for the 3rd time...

I put the GrillGrates on the grill and had to let everything warm back up before this 'finishing touch'. I finally put the bird parts back on the grill for another 20 minutes. Needless to say I was now worried I had over cooked and dried it out. If I did, the family was easy on me. We enjoyed our meal an hour past schedule which does help elongate cocktail hour and improves hunger. Today's left overs were fabulous and I figured it was appropriate to tell on myself. The GrillGrates did a super job on my half cocked ( err half cooked) bird!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Get the Bird out of the Kitchen and Onto the Grill

This will be our second year that we'll grill our Thanksgiving Turkey so I am no expert, but I am surely a convert! I doubt that Susan would let me do it indoors again anyway, she gets her kitchen back and I am in the game instead of watching it!

Here are a couple of very good resources to get your bird on the grill!
1. Bon Appetit did a really nice over-view of how to grill a turkey complete with good graphics for grill set-up for gas and charcoal. It was in this month's issue. I'm going to use my gas grill again since it has such good heat control and my Kamado is still an unfinished repair job...
2. has the most comprehensive information on grilling a turkey that I have seen. Craig "Meathead" Goldwyn writes extensively on the art and science of great grilling and this is a superb read that I look forward to following along at the grill. Gobble until you wobble!
3. NY Times- A butcher's approach to carving a turkey. I discovered this gem last year and it really is the best way to carve the bird. Removing the bones from the meat makes such a difference! And forget carving it at the table!
4. Spatchcocking - Bitten Word with credits to Martha Stewart. We've just started doing this with chicken and really want to try with our Turkey.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

KCBS Tour Grills Grate Pizza

Our friends at KCBS just completed their nationwide tour of BBQ Cookoffs with their last appearance at Talladega, AL. Mike and Chris Peters do an outstanding job with the KCBS Tour demonstrating grilling techniques and products for their sponsors. Their samplings go fast and the crowds are always appreciative. At Talladega they grilled 50 Pizzas and had a sampling frenzy going on!

Chris and Mike took a page out of my playbook with MamaMary's Gourmet Crusts and GrillGrates! They used chicken that had been previously grilled, KC Masterpiece original sauce and the new Smoky Bourbon sauce, and in Chris's words the "FANTASTIC Grill Grates for quick, easy and DELICIOUS PIZZA!!!" Thanks for sending along the pictures and I look forward to seeing you guys on the road next year. Remember to use KCBS as a coupon code to save 20% on all GrillGrate products in our webstore. GrillGrate, Eat Well!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Second Winner of Make Your Mark With GrillGrates

"I love my GrillGrates. A Lot!
This is the best new product I have tested in years. The concept is so very clever on so many levels: The base blocks flare-ups and helps prevent burning. As a result, meats brown beautifully, and you get really crispy chicken skin without scorching. Juices drip into the valleys between the rails where they are vaporized and the vapors penetrate the meat enhancing flavor. The holes in the base allow some juices down and smoke and combustion gases up to reach the food adding more superb flavors. I have made my best steaks and burgers ever with GrillGrates."
Craig “Meathead” Goldwyn 10/31/09

After a review like that I picked up the phone and had an enjoyable discussion of grate grilling with Meathead. We discussed the physics of burger and steak grilling. The Hamburger is an iconic field for foodies and grillers in particular. Craig feels that GrillGrates are the missing link to The Perfect Burger! Thank you Meathead! and back at you as our 2nd Winner in the Make Your Mark with GrillGrates contest!

Friday, November 6, 2009


The United Steaks of America Cookoff Team continues to impress. Not only do they compete, but they put on a great time for the kids and adults. And they sample a lot of food- including MamaMary's Pizza- Gourmet Crusts which are super tailgating fare for hungry fans.

Now back to grilling great steaks which inspired this update. I need to update our YouTube video seared not charred to include all the great stuff we are hearing and learning about grilling the 'best steaks I've ever grilled'. Let me hear and see your story! I know its not easy to remember to grab your camera at the grill. We did enormous T-Bones the other night and I forgot to take a picture of one of the best steaks I've ever grilled!

We also received some grate photos from Smoking Asses Team hailing from Weatherford TX. They re-surfaced their Pit with GrillGrates recently and I'm looking forward to reports of their travels. I look forward to hearing more from the Grate State of Texas!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Grilling Grate at the JACK!

Every avid griller and BBQ fan needs to attend the Jack Daniels Invitational BBQ Cookoff at least once. Lynchburg, TN (pop 261) is home to the Jack Daniels Distillery, and each fall hosts 25,000 visitors to THE JACK. This year marked the 21st annual cookoff, and my first visit. The town has one traffic light and a picturesque downtown. The contest is held in a public park complex just behind the town square. Every parking spot in town is vacated so vendors from across the US can set up shop on the sidewalks of Lynchburg. I got very lucky to jump in at the last minute and had a slightly hilly spot at the main entrance to the contest. The crowd was amazing, I met people from Canada, California, TX, Switzerland, and the UK all who came for a grand weekend in Lynchburg. I had a blast grilling pizza, quesadillas, and garlic bread. I ran out of food just in time to make the rounds at the end of the competition and visit friends before the winners were announced. This contest is an invitational, meaning only the best of the best are competing along with an international contingent that was especially impressive.

Put the JACK on your calendar for a fabulous October weekend in the TN foothills!

Monday, October 19, 2009

First Weekly Winner of Make Your Mark with GrillGrates Contest

I love to cook, and find it relaxing and fun. Sometimes my hobby gets away from me as I have 5 different grills and a pig cooker that I pull behind my pickup truck. I was watching a BBQ video and saw a link on YouTube where you are doing pizza on the grill. That sent me to your web site and I was very interested in your product for my 22” Weber charcoal grill. I figured this will fit my Weber and also park on my gas grill grate. I sent the web site to my wife, with the thought of getting them for Christmas. Well, she ordered them and I was there when they were delivered on Thursday so she said just go ahead, this Christmas gift is early. (Timing is everything!) My battle plan was to bake a stuffed chicken roaster in the oven on Sunday for dinner. Then I got the bright idea that I would test your “no flames” theory with a stuffed roaster. I figured if I had no flames with a greasy stuffed chicken, this Grill Grate would prevent flame up with whatever I put on my Weber. I fired up my Webber, and put my BBQGuru (draft control) on the grill, setting the temp at 350. I put two stuffed roasters on the grill and walked away. I checked it several times, and had no flames at all.
My roasters turned out great, and I have attached a few pictures. Just looking at the chickens, you would not know they were baked on the grill and not in the oven. The outside of the chickens were crispy, and the meat was juicy and tasted really great.
My wife and I are already referring Grill Grate to all of our friends, which already started Sunday evening!
Thank you!

Steve S.
Harrisburg, PA
Oct 13, 2009

PS- I love the fact that this GRATE Meal was not about sear marks at all!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Big Green Egg Bests Apple!

My first Eggtoberfest this weekend led me to a not so startling conclusion. The Big Green Egg Company just may have the world's most happy and satisfied customers of any company- period. Apple has been the pinnacle of rabid, enthusiastic customers and I've been an Apple customer, fan and enthusiast for over 20 years. But nothing compares to the pure joy and celebration that owners and fans of Big Green Eggs displayed this weekend. Every Egger I know is an evangelist, and this weekend's 12th annual 2 day event was a customer celebration like I have never seen before. The product is certainly outstanding, and now I've learned that the company is equally as impressive as its product. BGE reminded me again what a pleasure it is to work in this industry.

I want to thank Egghead Paul for his help and cooking with me this weekend and a special thanks to Jodi Burson of BGE for including me in their outstanding event! Egg over apple, I'll have to try that one!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Eggceptional Grilling with the Big Green Egg

I am probably the only cook grilling this weekend at the Eggtoberfest who does not own a Big Green Egg. However, Egghead Paul- my grilling compadre took pity and brought me his BGE from home so I could practice, and I don't think he wants me to embarrass him in front of all of his EGG friends. First of all, I'll never call the BGE crowd a cult again! I'm hooked, totally sold and trying to figure out a way to keep Paul's Egg on my patio a little while longer.

We're both excited to be able to cook at the Eggtoberfest on Saturday. We'll be grilling grate along with 200 members of the BGE family. Thanks Paul and thanks BGE!

Kickin Chicken Thighs, Eggceptional Burgers, Garlic Bread and Steaks! I love my job!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Make Your Mark with GrillGrate Contest

I love it when a customer has a brilliant idea! Audrey M from Maryland emailed photos a of grilled crabcake and the suggestion for a Great Grill Marks Contest! Audrey gets a T Shirt and an extra GrillGrate panel and MamaMary's Gourmet Crust coupons for that suggestion!

Make Your Mark with GrillGrate Contest- One weekly winner for the next 4 weeks will get the same prize as Audrey did along with Tweets and Facebook glory. The first winner will be announced Oct 18, the second Oct 25, the third, Nov1 and the last on Nov 7.

A grand prize winner will be announced before Thanksgiving and wins the Greatest GrillGrate Gift Bag, a T shirt, GrillGrate apron, and more.
Post pictures or Video on the GrillGrate Fan Page on Facebook
Post Video on GrillGrate YouTube Channel (post a video response to the featured video)
Email photos or video clips

Contest Notes: All previously submitted photos may be entered, but must be re-submitted.

On your MARK!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Competitive BBQ Teams WINNING with GrillGrate!

The secret is getting out! United Steaks of America BBQ Cookoff Team from Dallas has posted two recent wins using GrillGrates as part of their arsenal. Congrats Guys! They also were the first to purchase our new professional GrillGrates for the Weber Kettle. That was how I found out about their wins including a first in Steak and a 2nd and 4th in Tulsa last weekend.

Randy Twford- a veteran competitive BBQ is also using GrillGrates. He took 2nd in PORK at the Pork Expo using GrillGrates. Randy also uses GrillGrates for his steaks. Thanks for the pictures Randy and good luck at the Royal this weekend! I've got some GrillGrate SWAG coming your way Randy and thank you again for your testimonial last weekend- the background noise drowned us out, but I loved hearing about your success with GrillGrates!

A KCBS judge told me last week that he has suggested to a few of his favorite teams to use GrillGrates- not just for the fabulous searing but to achieve a juicier product as well. He only wanted to let his favorites in on the secret... well this is one secret I am anxious to get out!
GrillGrate, Eat Well! and WIN!

Friday, October 2, 2009

A Smoking GRATE IDEA from Craig 'Meathead' Goldwyn

A few weeks ago I received this picture from Meathead who runs He introduced me to Candy at BBQRS Delight who manufacturers a wide line of hardwood pellets for smoking. He put a few of Candy's pellets in the bottom valley of the GrillGrates and reported a superb result. Meathead called GrillGrates and BBQRS Delights pellets peanut butter & jelly we go together so well. What a simple and effective way to add smoking to grate grilling!

Candy and I have exchanged products and now I am really impressed. The smoke flavor on our gas grill was amazing. I gave up using smoker boxes on my gasser because it was just a pain to soak em, hide the box and hope it smokes. These little pelets work- and what an assortment! She has a nice Christmas variety pack on her website.

Candy also competes and right now she is at the Mac Daddy of them all- The Kansas City Royal. Good Luck Candy! and use your GrillGrates for your chicken entry! And a special thank you to Craig Goldwyn aka 'Meathead' for your enthusiasm and support of GrillGrates! GrillGrate, Eat Well!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Getting Back to the QUE! Praise the LARD!

We're making the trip to BBQ Mecca tomorrow- Murphysboro, IL. It will be our second trip. Our first trip was fabulous, getting into the kitchen with Mike and having a great meal with the 17th Street gang. Now we're just playing groupie and hanging out with a bunch of great people and looking forward to spending some quality time to enjoy southern Illinois, and some great BBQ!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

On the same page with Bobby Flay!

Page 22 of New Jersey Savvy Magazine! Nice Grilling and Chillin' article. Thanks for spotlightling two NJ boys. I grew up in Liberty Corner, NJ- aka Mayberry RFD.

I'm not looking for a throw-down with Bobby, but sure would love to grill with him!
Grill Grate, Eat Well!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Attention Big Green Egg Owners!

We are now offering modified GrillGrates for the BGE Large and BGE XL. The standard rectangular grates work well on BGE's but I've heard from enough Eggers that want to cover more surface area and a couple of handy customers just cut off the corners and helped me see how nicely 3 GrillGrates fit on the large BGE and I figured out all by myself how 3 of the the 20 inch commercial GrillGrates fit beautifully on the XL. Just the corners need to be nipped. Over 300 square inches of GrillGrate surface on the XL.

Of course we're offering special pricing to customers who have already purchased GrillGrates for their large Eggs. Just email me a photo of your EGG with GrillGrates and I'll offer you a special low price on a 'Left and Right' to add to your collection! The left and right will list for $24.99 per Grate. Please email me: or call 877.380.2527. The BGE XL set will retail for $129.99

There is only one way to improve on the best grill available: GrillGrates!