Portable charcoal barbecues can come in many shapes and sizes, but a new model from startup Nomad is one that puts a big emphasis on easy carry. The company’s debut griller and smoker offers plenty of cooking surface for ribs, steaks and burgers, but can be folded up and carted away like a briefcase once supper is done.
The Nomad Grill and Smoker is designed for use everywhere from the backyard to the backcountry, with the 28-pound (12.7-kg) aluminum box featuring an ergonomic handle for easy transport. Dotted all throughout the exterior are small holes that allow air to flow into the layered walls and keep the exterior cool to the touch, and work with vent sliders for damper control to fine-tune the temperatures inside the charcoal bed.
Folded open, the cooker features two empty chambers that can be filled with charcoal, with stainless steel cooking grates laid down over the top. In this open “Grill Mode,” the cooker offers 425 square inches (2,700 sq-cm) of cooking space, or enough for 30 burger patties, according to the team. The optional second grate will, however, add en extra 3 lb (1.3 kg) to the total weight.
If it’s more of a low-and-slow experience you’re after, the grill can be closed up and sealed shut to allow the charcoal aromas and smoke to circulate and gently cook your meats. While much more confined, Nomad says this configuration still offers enough grilling space to accommodate two racks of ribs.
In this packed up form, the Nomad Grilll and Smoker measures 20.5 x 13.5 x 9.5 in (42 x 34 x 24 cm), making it a manageable item to carry from the garage to the yard, or the car to the campfire. With that kind of weight, however, it’s probably not a suitable solution for folks heading into the wild on foot, who might be better off looking at something like the backpack friendly GoBQ, which uses a folding, fabric construction and weighs just 8-lb (3.6-kg).
The Nomad Grill and Smoker is available now via the company’s website and is priced at US$599, while a second cooking grate will cost an extra $119.
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