Beautiful, well built all stainless grill with lifetime warranty
Jun 1, 2006 (Updated Apr 30, 2009)
Review by jones_ken_us
Rated a Very Helpful Review
The quick facts:
Recommend this product?
Three burners 15,000 BTU each, 45,000 total for main burners
One rear (rotisserie) burner 14,000 BTU
One side burner 12,000 BTU
Total = 71,000 BTU
Thermometer on hood
Battery powered igniter
12 ft long flexible gas line and quick disconnect (NG version)
Lifetime warranty on everything except rubber hoses and igniter
Excellent build quality
Stainless steel (304) throughout
Very easy assembly
Brass (not steel) burners
Large side shelves
Large easy rolling wheels that lock
Rotisserie is not included (although burner is)
Hard to see flame
Price a bit high
I looked around for a mid-sized stainless grill that also came in natural gas version when I stumbled upon the Jenn-Air at Lowes. I recognized this brand from their kitchen appliances, and I was impressed that the grills are up to the same quality as their indoor equipment. The price at 750 was more than some other propane-only stainless grills I looked at for around 500, but in the end the build quality and lifetime warranty of the Jenn-Air convinced me it was worth it.
The first thing I noticed about the grill was how nice it looked, and once I opened the hood, how heavy duty the steel felt. Looking more closely I could see the entire unit including the undersides and hidden panels were 100% stainless. The grill surface is very heavy polished stainless rods. I find the best way to see the quality of any grill is to look “under the hood”. So in removing the grill surface there are stainless “flame tamers” that sit below that lift right out. When I removed them I was very surprised to see the burners are all brass, not steel or even stainless. I never saw a grill with such quality brass burners before. The grill box area is nicely welded together and there are no sharp or unfinished edges anywhere. The parts go back together easily.
This unit has 3 main burners, although they have a larger 5 burner model too. I was looking for something to fit on my deck and this unit was the right size for me. My old grill only had two main burners so the added flexibility of a third burner is nice. Inside the hood is a fourth burner they call the rear burner. This is an infrared type of burner that sits across the back of the fire box and is used only for rotisserie. This is a real nice feature because the rear emitting heat prevents flare ups when roasting. The only bummer was the rotisserie was not included; it’s a $70 optional accessory which surprised me at this price. I didn’t purchase the rotisserie (yet) so I have not reviewed it here. I’ll update the review when I get it. I can tell you the rear burner ignited easily and provides a good amount of radiant heat with little or no flame; so I expect it to work well. The last burner is a side grill burner for a pot or pan, and again this burner has nice brass construction. I liked that side burner is recessed into the surface so it lays flat with the cover closed, allowing the shelf to be used when the burner is not in use.
When I got the unit home and unboxed it I found that nearly the whole unit was pre-assembled. I just had to unscrew 4 screws from each side to attach the side shelves, and 4 more screws for the nicely polished handle. Total assembly time: about 15 minutes. I picked the natural gas version, so instead of a propane tank connector, it came with a very long 12 ft flexible gas pipe with a heavy duty brass quick disconnect. This makes it easy to disconnect the grill from the gas supply, then push the hose back into the large base, and roll the grill wherever I want. My old NG grill had to be hard-plumbed and could not be moved, so the quick disconnect was a major plus. I was impressed with the large wheels and hidden casters; they are heavy duty and include a single foot control pedal to lock the wheels from rolling.
I’ve used the grill a few times now and I find it to be very easy to use and plenty hot enough. The large knobs are easy to adjust and they produce a spark simply by pushing the knob in, much like an indoor stove. The only thing I find a little confusing is the high and low settings seem to be reversed to me, they are labeled correctly but I’d expect to turn the knob the other way for high flame. Also, I found I cannot readily see the flame in any of the burners including (strangely) the side burner. I’m used to looking at the flame to adjust the heat and in this grill the flame is pretty well hidden from view.
As expected the grill cooks very well and the three burners provide good flexibility for direct or indirect heating. The side burner is large but I had a hard time simmering with it, but it will work well for boiling water for corn and such.
2007 update: I received the rotisserie as a gift for Fathers Day and I'm very impressed. The spit rod is extremely heavy and the motor has plenty of power. I cooked a 6 lb chicken and a 5 lb port roast so far and both came out awesome. The rear burner works well and there are no flare ups. I just put an aluminum tray under the meat to catch the drippings, I add juice or beer to the tray to keep the meat moist. The grill only gets to 300-350 degrees with the rear burner, just right for slow cooking. The chicken took 80 mins, the roast about 90. All i had to do was sit back and watch, basting every 15-20 mins. Both were crispy outside and juicy inside.
The unit is otherwise holding up well. As it it stainless, frequent cleaning with stainless cleaner is necessary. Other cleaners don't work; it must be for stainless which has a bit of light oil in it I think. Cleaning the firebox is a snap, remove grills and drip pans and squirt with hose or pressure washer.
2009 Update - some parts on the grill have started to rust, mostly the dividers between the burners and the sear surface and the bottom of the box under the burners. It appears to be a slightly lower grade of stainless, I don't think it will rust out, but it can no longer be cleaned to shiny. The burners are all cast so they held up well, the grill surface is also holding up well. I'm not sure if Lowes carries this model any more.
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Amount Paid (US$): 750
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