George Foreman’s lean, mean, grilling machine has been the go-to for countertop cooking ever since it hit the scene back in 1994, but soon its 20-year reign as the undisputed champ of indoor grilling might come to an end — that is, if the Palate Home Grill has anything to say about it.
Designed and developed by fledgling hardware startup Palate (and currently a contender at TechCrunch’s Disrupt event in San Francisco), the grill is essentially a modern, sensor-studded, app-enabled version of the George Foreman grill. According to its creators, the device can cook almost any food perfectly by using Palate’s proprietary done-ness sensing tech and high-precision temperature controls. Just tell the machine what you’re cooking, the the start button, and it will use it’s powerful software and advanced sensors to automatically adjust the cooking profile to give you optimum results — even if you’re starting with something that’s frozen, or your serving time needs to be delayed mid-cook.
This certainly isn’t the first time somebody’s tried to redesign the grill press and give it some smarts (check out the OptiGrill from T-Fal), but that’s not to say that Palate doesn’t bring anything new to the table.
What makes Palate different is its accompanying mobile app for smartphones and tablets. Rather than featuring a slew of different buttons on its face, the grill is controlled almost entirely via the mobile app. The only physical control on the appliance is a single dial for manual temperature adjustment — everything else is taken care of through the app. All you need to do is tell the machine what type of food its cooking and enter in your desired level of doneness — the embedded sensors and software will take care of the rest. And of course, as you’d expect from any card-carrying smart cooker, Palate can even send you alerts when your meal is done cooking.
“With the Palate Smart Grill, you start the cooking with a few taps on an iPad, and the grill executes a precision-temperature cooking process that cooks the food exactly the way you want it,” CEO Eric Norman said in an interview with TechCrunch. “With the Smart Grill’s technology, food is cooked perfectly even if the meal is delayed because guests are an hour late; it’s impossible to overcook or undercook the food.”
The grill isn’t currently available for either purchase or pre-order, but the company has produced a range of fully-functional prototypes, so we’re fairly certain that a large-scale production run is slated for the not-so-distant future. We’ll keep you posted on availability, but in the meantime you can find out more (or sign up for email updates) on Palate’s website.