The Bottom Line
Fuego got into the grill business as a design shop, working to create a new way of looking at grills. The Element Portable has an attractive appearance all packaged up. The question is, how does it grill? This is a small portable grill with 159 square inches of cooking space. The combination of cast iron cooking grate and 8,000 BTU burner gives it a high cooking temperature that is perfect for cooking burgers and steaks.
Though the temperature doesn't adjust very low, that isn't a feature most people look for in a little portable. Listing around $200USD this isn't an inexpensive portable either. With a few limitations, this is a good grill. You have to decide if it is worth the price.
- Gets hot
- Can be carried with one hand
- Grease catcher isn't easy to clean out and leaks if full
- Rubber band that holds it together is awkward and fragile
- Uneven heating
- 159 square inch porcelain coated cast iron cooking grate
- 8,000 BTU tubular stainless steel burner
- Push button piezoelectric ignition
- Weighs 13 pounds
- Removable grease pan
- Frequently pictured shoulder strap is sold separately.
- Made in Taiwan by Sunrise Life Products for Fuego
Guide Review - Element Portable Gas Grill
What I look for in a good portable gas grill is a lightweight unit with a solid and heavy cooking grate. It should have good heat output and be able to be carried with one hand.
The Element Portable Gas Grill by Fuego is all these things. At a list price of $200USD it doesn't really have any excuses not to be, but certainly there are more expensive portable grills that simply are not portable.
In testing the Element Portable I was impressed with the heat output, certainly more than enough to put a good sear on anything grilled.
The combination of the 8,000 BTU burner and the porcelain coated cast iron cooking grate, designed to make the most of the flame, makes for a hot little grill. There is a cool spot in the middle of the grill but easy enough to accommodate for.
Folded up and with the locking strap in place, this is a lightweight little grill that is perfect for the park or beach. One item to point out is that this grill is frequently pictured over the shoulder, but that shoulder strap is an additional item and does not come with the grill so the display is a little deceiving.
On the downside, the grease catcher is a small bowl underneath the grill. To remove this, the cooking grate has to be removed, a cotter pin pulled out and the bowl dropped out the bottom. The bowl does not fit tightly to the grill (to allow air to flow into the grill) so if it is full and the grill tipped, grease will pour out the bottom. Before packing up the grill has to be cleaned out. This is typical of many portables, but from some of the reviews, I have seen online a feature that several people find to be a problem.
Additionally, the rubber locking strap is somewhat awkward to remove and I am not confident that it will survive a lot of abuse, like sunlight or cold temperatures.
It looks cool, but probably not all that practical in the long run. The band on my test unit lasted one year stored in my garage.
Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.