The Bottom Line
First of all, it is important to point out that I refer to this as a charcoal grill in the loosest sense. This is a live fire wood burning grill. You can use charcoal, but if you are buying this grill then you really should be buying good hardwood logs split and ready to burn. From the simplest perspective, this is like cooking on a campfire. Of course, this campfire is built in a 304 stainless still box with an adjustable cooking grate and a list of great features.
- Large cooking area
- Solid 304 stainless steel construction
- 648 square inches of cooking surface
- V-channel stainless steel cooking grates
- Cooking grate adjustment height of 16 inches
- Four locking casters
- Front mounted drip try for basting
- Removable ash catchers
- Made in the United States by The Grillworks
Guide Review - The Grillworks 36
Originally designed by Charles Eisendrath, a Time Magazine correspondent and academic, the Grillery, as it was known 30 years ago has evolved slowly from the original idea of an open grill similar to those you might find in Argentina. Now called Grillworks, but still owned by the Eisendrath family, this wood burning grill has become a favorite of professional chefs and the rich and famous around the world. Partly because this model costs nearly $5,000USD and partly because it is an amazing grill, the Grillworks is one of those sought after products.
Simply put this is a rectangular box with removable ash catchers in the bottom and heavy duty coal grates for the fire to burn on. This allows the ashes to fall away keeping the fire hot, and hot is a big selling point with this grill. The wood burning in a grill like this can reach temperatures well above what most gas grills can.
You don't control the fire here, other than adding more wood periodically, you adjust the distance between the fire and the food by turning a flywheel which raises or lowers the cooking grate. There is 16 inches of adjustment which will take this from high intense searing heat to a slow roast. There is even an optional rotisserie system for this grill.
The Grillworks 36 has 648 square inches of cooking space, which is plenty for a large family or a small gathering. One feature that I really like with this is that the cooking grates are V-channeled stainless steel that allows the drippings to drain forward into trays in the front. You can fill these trays with any kind of liquid and use it as a baste while cooking. Juices from what you have on the grill will pour back into these trays, adding extra flavor.
As I said above, this is an expensive charcoal grill. One of the most expensive charcoal grills you can buy, which makes this a luxury item. James Beard used to have one of these grills. Matthew McConaughey has one. This is a dream product and if you can afford it I fully encourage you to buy one. Yes, it is live fire cooking for the serious cook, but if that is you, you really want one of these.