1. cjvitek's Avatar
    Weber's On the Grill, by Weber-Stephens Products Co.
    $4.99, ***1/2

    • Nice grilling guide for grilling
    • Some handy built in tools and references
    • Easy to find information
    • Automatically create shopping list

    • No ability to input your own recipes
    • Can't export shopping list
    • No search feature

    Grill masters of the world, unite! As someone who enjoys grilling (but does it far too rarely) I decided to take a look at Weber's new grilling companion, On The Grill? How does it stack up? Pretty well, both in terms of usefulness and ease of use.

    When you start the app, you begin at the recipes page. You can choose from recipe type (meat type, dessert, sauces, etc). Within each category there are a huge number of recipes (the app boasts 250 cooking recipes from the various Weber books). Unfortunately there is no way to search for a keyword, but given the breakdown it should be pretty easy to find any recipe you want.

    There is also no way to add your own recipe. I would love to see the ability to create you own, and then send them to other people (via email, or bluetooth to another iPhone). Maybe this will be an update in future editions

    Within each recipe, you have a nice picture, information like serving size, prep time, and grill time. You have ingredients and instructions. What you don't have is nutritional information. For the health conscious, this may be a major missing feature. You can also add a recipe to your favorites for quick access, or add the list of ingredients to your shopping list.

    The shopping list feature takes all the ingredients you have selected and creates...well...a shopping list. You can view it as a list or by recipe (in case you decided you don't want to cook a particular item anymore). To remove any recipe just use the edit button.

    But the app goes farther than that. It also has a grilling techniques section. Again, divided by taks (basics, food prep, safety, etc), if even has some videos to demonstrate some basic techniques (controlling flare ups, two zone fires, etc). The techniques consist of clear, easy to follow instructions with pictures (when appropriate).

    The grill guide screen lets you determine how long you want to cook any item. First you choose the meat type (such as red meat), then the specific cut or food type (ground beef, rack of lamb, or t-bone steak). With each type, you can specify the quantity, thickness, or whatever is appropriate. So, if you choose red meat, t-bone steak, 1.25 inches thing, the app will tell you to cook it for 8 to 10 minutes (for medium rare). Specifically, it says sear for 6 minutes, then grill for 2 to 4 minutes on indirect heat. Now, it doesn't say it this is per side or not, so there is still a little room for more clarification.

    Lastly, it comes with a grill timer - setting hours, minutes, and seconds, so you can make sure to cook exactly as recommended.

    The app also has grilling tips that can pop up (or viewed manually). I turned mine off, but there may be some nugget of wisdom that will help you out.

    All in all, this is a nice tool to use with grilling. I say tool, simply because it is not just a cookbook. With the technique guide, the grill guide, and the timer, this can be used by both the novice and the pro (although the pro may not be as interested). At $4.99, I felt the app was a little over priced, especially since it lacks the ability to add your own recipes. But for someone who loves to grill, the price may not be a concern. I liked the app, but I felt that there were enough minor flaws with it, combined with the price, to keep it from being a slam dunk purchase. Three and a half out of five stars.

    Rating scale:

    * = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
    ** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
    *** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
    **** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
    ***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.

    Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating.
    08-20-2009 01:48 PM
  2. Diskincirucky's Avatar
    im new here
    just want to say hello
    07-10-2010 07:28 AM