Vermont Castings 422 gas grill review

Vermont Castings 422 gas grill review front outdoor barbequeSummertime means grilling season, and there is plenty of warm weather left to make use of a new grill. While there are a variety of grill options to choose from, gas grills make a popular choice because you can fire one up on a Tuesday night and be ready to grill in minutes, rather than waiting for a charcoal fire to be ready. Among gas grill enthusiasts, American-made grills from Vermont Castings enjoy a solid reputation. The company makes three basic styles of grill; three-burner (both the 322 and 332 series are 3 burner models), four-burner (422 series) and five-burner (522 series) models. We fired up the Vermont Castings 422 model (starting at $1,699 MSRP) with the optional infrared sear burner to see how it performed.

Home assembly of gas grills is never a quick process, but assembling the 422 was challenging and time consuming. While the directions were relatively straightforward, I did have to switch from the usual assembly guide to a separate assembly in order to install the side sear burner. Vermont Castings recommends two people assemble this grill together, which is good advice as the process took almost four and a half hours to assemble the grill completely. Some screws were difficult and in awkward positions to reach; on a few occasions, I had to ask my wife to screw some of the parts together because I could not fit my hands into the space available. I don’t have particularly large hands, so this could be an issue. If you have the option to purchase this grill already assembled, save yourself an afternoon and go for it.

Vermont Castings 422 gas grill review side barbeque cookerOnce assembled, the Vermont Castings 422 is an impressive grill. A heavy, cast-iron lid, high-grade stainless steel construction and porcelain-coated cast iron grates suggest that this is a grill meant for years of use. Unfortunately, the lower doors on the grill that house the propane tank and storage were noticeably off center. Don’t blame my assembly: These doors come attached to the grill frame from the factory, and the half inch-difference between the two doors was one of the first things visitors remarked on. Additionally, the back panel of the storage housing came with a very noticeable dent. For nearly $2,000, it would be exceptionally frustrating to receive this grill and then find these issues. Both should have been noticed and corrected in the factory. This is the kind of grill you want to guests to envy and appreciate, not comment that the doors are askew.

Cosmetic issues aside, the 422 performs well. The four burners provide an even heat over the grilling surface. Oftentimes, gas grills can have cold spots where the burners don’t heat as well. The Vermont Castings 422 doesn’t have that issue; time and again I grilled items over the entire surface of the grill and not once did I find any issues. At approximately 110 btus per square inch the 422 delivers enough heat to get a good crust on steaks, even if you don’t opt for the sear burner. The two-sided grill plates cater to different types of food. The rounded side works well for juicy items like hamburgers, while the flat side makes it easier to remove delicate items like shrimp. The burners maintain a solid heat and creates excellent grill marks. At 493 square inches of grill surface, nine New York steaks fit comfortably on the grill. A specially designed sear plate helps direct grease away from the flames, which minimized flare ups, even with fatty foods. The heavy hood seals in heat effectively, allowing for easy roasting. It has one noticeable flaw: The built-in hood thermometer fogged up with every use, rendering it virtually worthless. While this is more of an issue with roasted items than grilled items, it was yet another frustration that shouldn’t be an issue on a grill at this price point.

Vermont Castings 422 gas grill review top angle cookingThe 422’s versatility is a major selling point. In addition to being able to roast and grill like every other gas grill, it also comes with a built-in rotisserie. This rotisserie is much more powerful than most rotisserie attachments sold for gas grills, which lets it handle plenty of food. The infrared sear burner may just be the must-have option for the 422. Essentially a separate, super-hot burner, it allows you to quickly sear a steak or other item, sealing in the juices and getting that steakhouse-like quality that is often missing from other grills. After searing (the instructions recommend two minutes per side for steaks), you can move the steaks over to the grill to finish cooking. A warming rack above the main grill easily holds an ear of corn lengthwise, and will hold 10 to 12 whole ears at once, which, along with the large grill area, makes cooking for a crowd much simpler.

Backlit dials and an attached light make nighttime grilling a breeze with the 422, and two built-in condiment trays mean that rubs, seasonings and sauces can be kept handy until needed.

Vermont Castings 422 gas grill review top cookingOverall, the propane-powered Vermont Castings 422 excels in a variety of cooking styles, from searing to grilling to roasting and rotisserie. A number of user-friendly features enhance the cooking experience. Unfortunately, quality control issues like crooked doors and a faulty built-in thermometer shouldn’t exist in a grill at this price point. If your sole concern is cooking performance, the Vermont Castings 422 is a great choice. If you are looking for a high-performance grill that you can show off to your friends and neighbors, I’d advise a bit of caution here. Check with your dealer to see what they will do if you have parts installed poorly, dents, or gauges that don’t work properly. At $1,699 MSRP, you wouldn’t want to be stuck with a model that doesn’t look pristine.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Booze-filled ski poles and crypto piggy banks

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Mobile

Give Rachael Ray a run for her money with these 13 recipe apps

You don’t have to be Gordon Ramsay to make a killer meal, you just need an easy to follow recipe app. We’ve compiled our 13 favorite cooking apps for Android smartphones and iPhones, including countless recipes to suit any taste.
Smart Home

The best air fryers deliver fried food with a fraction of the calories

What is this magical mechanism? It's an air fryer, and when used correctly, it can mimic the effects of frying while using just a little bit of oil. You still get that crispy, golden exterior and the fluffy center.
Wearables

Our favorite fitness trackers make it fun to keep moving

Looking for your first fitness tracker, or an upgrade to the one you're already wearing? There are plenty of the wrist-worn gadgets available. Here are our picks for the best fitness trackers available right now.
Smart Home

LG will announce partnerships at CES to help give you a smart kitchen

LG is announcing a number of partnerships that will help make kitchen appliances even smarter. It is working with Drop, the makers of Kitchen OS, to create a unified kitchen experience that will make cooking easy.
Smart Home

Starbucks teams with Uber Eats for delivery from 2,000 of its U.S. stores

Starbucks has teamed up with Uber Eats to offer customers deliveries from almost a quarter of its stores in the U.S. The major expansion launches early next year, making life even easier for fans of the coffee giant.
Deals

Amazon Fire Deals: Tablets, TVs, and TV controllers in stock and ready to ship

Last-minute shoppers, and anyone seeking good deals on Amazon Fire products, are in luck. There's still time to order Fire Tablets, Fire TVs, and Fire media players, Fire CVRs, and Alexa-voice-compatible Fire remotes for Christmas delivery.
Smart Home

Best Walmart deals on Keurig and Nespresso coffee makers, espresso machines

The days till Christmas are slipping by, but these Walmart deals on Keurig and Nespresso coffee makers are prime candidates for last-minute gift selections. All four coffee makers ship for free in time to arrive before Christmas.
Smart Home

Ring, Amazon’s smart doorbell maker, explores technology that alerts police

Smart doorbells have been using facial-recognition technology to mark friends and family but a pair of patents filed by Ring could lead to doorbells that automatically identify suspicious persons and notify police.
Smart Home

These activists are hacking housing problems in NYC using apps and data

There are 1.2 million people living in "deficient" housing in New York City and now these coders are making easy-to-use, intuitive apps designed to give tenants a fighting chance against unscrupulous landlords.
Smart Home

Holiday shopping: Here are the final dates for Amazon’s free shipping promotion

If you're shopping with Amazon this holiday season, then time is fast running out if you want all of your gifts delivered before December 25. Here are the dates you need to know ...
Smart Home

Ward off porch pirates with the best outdoor security cameras

Worried about porch pirates stealing your packages, or intruders entering your home? Always be in the know about who or what is on your property by installing one of these outdoor security cameras.
Deals

Save up to $200 on Roomba and other robot vacuums before Christmas

We've found the best discounts on robot vacuum cleaners on brands such as Roomba, Shark, Eufy, and Ecovacs Deebot. Whether you're buying Christmas gifts or just need a little help around the house, these fourteen deals can help you save.
Smart Home

Here are the smart home gifts peple actually want this year

Looking for a smart home gift to buy for someone on your list? It's not too late! Of all the gadgets we research and test, these are our picks for the best last-minute smart home gifts for 2018.