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Griddle vs Grill

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Hi Everyone,

 

I will be getting a new range, what are the advantages and disadvantages between getting a griddle vs. a grill? I will probably be getting a Viking 48" range.

 

Help please!

 

post #2 of 13

A lot of that depends on your cooking style. That's really the main criteria.

 

Do you do a lot of grilling? Then an integral grill makes sense (don't forget the appropriately sized range hood!). If not, then a griddle will probably find more use to you, keeping in mind that a built-in griddle is, at base, a small flattop. And there is nothing as versatile as a flattop.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #3 of 13

I'd probably just want an actual burner or two over either the griddle or grill. More versatile and a reversible cast iron grill/griddle is just as good and easier to clean in my opinion. You can get them big enough to cover two burners which is a good all around size.

Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #4 of 13

Other than "grill marks", what exactly does a grill do that a griddle doesn't?  It drains the juices away, allows for flare-ups, and a pain to clean.  I see all of those are things I see as negatives for meat.  For grilled veggies, perhaps a grill has some usefulness.  However, before buying something with an integrated grill, make sure you understand how to clean it, where the drip tray is, all that stuff.  Grills inside the home just seem like a giant pain with little benefit.  With a flat top, you can put pots on it and use it like a ceramic top cooktop (the gas won't actually flame up to the pot, where it will on a gas burner).  As such, the temperature change will be less immediate as you're going through a piece of steel before the heat gets to a pot and you have the retained heat on the flat top. 

post #5 of 13

Agree on all points. At work we have both a griddle (called a French Grill) and a grill top. The griddle (groovy grill) I use for the grill marks and the flat top grill I use for all else. Cleaning the groovy grill is a pain but it has its' advantages, in that the grooves cause slower cooking because of the spacing and I can get better control than over a flat grill where the temperature is consistent throughout.

post #6 of 13

While Chefross seems to like the integrated grill, I think for the home cook, a flat top is much more versatile. This is especially true if you have an outdoor grill. My aunt has a beautiful kitchen with an integrated grill and a flat top. The flat top is used almost every day for everything from eggs to hamburgers. The grill looks perfectly new. I know that your food needs and cooking style may be completely different, but I think most home cooks would prefer a flat top to a grill.

"We make our food; thereafter, our food makes us." - Winston Churchill (with a slight modification)
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"We make our food; thereafter, our food makes us." - Winston Churchill (with a slight modification)
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post #7 of 13

Other than "grill marks", what exactly does a grill do that a griddle doesn't?

 

Understand that I'm not promoting indoor grills. There's no question that of the two, a flat top or flat top like device makes much more sense. But one thing a grill can do (in the absence of the other, you understand) is provide more actual cooking space than individual burners. Depending on size, of course, you can work with five or six pans in the same space only four would fit on individual burners.

 

For me, the ideal cooktop would be 4-5 individual burners and a largish flat top. Of course, being that such would be a custom instalation, the manufacturer would, no doubt, call it a "plancha" and charge twice as much for it.  

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #8 of 13

You can get very good stove-top griddles, grills, and even griddle/grill combination pans for a very fair price.  The big question is how much you miss your outdoor barbecue grill when weather makes it inaccessible.  If it's a lot, go for the grill.  If it's not, it's very nice to have such a heavy griddle.  Understand that whether you choose a griddle or grill, (assuming you're going for 6 burners) 12" is not a lot of width.  If you're cooking for a group, you'll still either need a stove-top griddle (get a Lodge) or to run outside and use the big grill. 

 

Also be aware that even at 12", Viking's griddle is a big, heavy, hunk of steel which takes a long time to warm up to where the heat is stable and spread evenly -- more like 15 minutes than 5.  The grill comes to temp quicker of course, but also requires some preheating.

 

I get the feeling that several of the people in this thread don't understand what Viking's built in grill is like and think it's a glorified grill-pan of some sort, which it isn't.  It's a grill just like an outdoor grill but mounted on your indoor stove top, and things cooked on it taste just the same as they would cooked on any gas-fired, outdoor grill.  Maybe not as good as a live-oak fire, but pretty darn nice.

 

Just for the sake of amusement, let me add that I've never heard the term "French grill" before used for a regular griddle, aka "flat top" (it's probably regional, I certainly don't mean to correct anyone).  On the other hand, I'm very familiar with a "French top" (aka "piano"), which is something else entirely.  It's like a griddle, but the heat is unevenly distributed (hottest in the middle, coolest on the edges) so you can use different parts of it  as for boiling, simmering, holding, and so on.  It's a saucier's dream, but unfortunately not much good for a home cook, and consequently not available on residential ranges -- at least as far as I know.

 

Rambling?  Who me?

 

BDL

 

post #9 of 13

I get the feeling that several of the people in this thread don't understand what Viking's built in grill is like and think it's a glorified grill-pan of some sort,

 

Hunh? That's kind of a stretch, based on the comments made so far. With the possible (I say, possible) exception of ChefRoss's comments about a French Grill, it's pretty obvious that everyone means a grill when they say grill; that is, a heat source covered by an open-grid cooking surface. That's one of the reasons for staments like mine (don't forget the appropriately sized range hood!) and Gobblygook's (It drains the juices away, allows for flare-ups, and a pain to clean) and Tyler's (for the home cook, a flat top is much more versatile. This is especially true if you have an outdoor grill).

 

As to preheating the Viking griddle, how is that any different, from a procedures point of view, than preheating, say, a cast-iron skillet as compared to a stainless one of the same size? It's just a matter of understanding your equipment.

 

As I've said (and others agree), or the two the griddle makes more sense. If I were asked for advice, however, my recommendation to the typical home cook is to get neither. People are drawn to the idea of these things, because they think they'll have the versatility of restaurant equipment. But, in the long term, neither the built-in grill nor griddle actually gets much use. Right after installation they make pancakes on the griddle, perhaps. Or grill a couple of burgers. And that's the last they ever get used. Phil's suggestion that a separate, reversible grill/griddle pan makes more sense is right on; but for practical use, and from a cleaning standpoint.

 

On the other hand, if I had the room for a 48" installation, and the money to spend, I'd keep my current cooktop and add a 48" flat top. But what else would you expect from a former short-order cook? And that's certainly not a viable choice for the OP.

 

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by KYHeirloomer View Post

I'd keep my current cooktop and add a 48" flat top.  



My kitchen fantasy.

"We make our food; thereafter, our food makes us." - Winston Churchill (with a slight modification)
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"We make our food; thereafter, our food makes us." - Winston Churchill (with a slight modification)
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post #11 of 13


The house we're renting has one of them Jenn-Aire fancy (20 years ago) cooktops.  It has two burners, a downdraft filter system, and an electric grille.  It's not a "charbroiler", but grille grates over a long electric element.  It is the absolute most useless piece of cooking equipment I've ever used.  The grille side doesn't get hot enough, with a pot on it, so it won't even boil water.  The height is not adjustable (from grate to burner).  The downdraft is between the grille (on the left side) and the two burners on the right.  The largest burner (front) cannot hold a 12" skillet centered.  The downdraft takes away a good third of the oven space.  No, it ain't a Viking, and it's still a 30" width, but based upon using this piece of crap, I'd never want a grille indoors.  It's very non-functional except for the intended purpose (but again is still not hot enough), and clean up is a pain.  The idea of using a gas grille indoors bothers me, because every time I see a cooking show where they have one of these (10 dollar dinners and Cook Like a Restaurant Chef), the meat darned near catches on fire.  The flare-ups are annoying, and a flat top doesn't have that problem.  While I like a "flame kissed" steak, I want it to have lots of pecks on the cheeks, not a long passionate kiss from the firelords.  Steak turned into charred carbon isn't good. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by boar_d_laze View Post

 

I get the feeling that several of the people in this thread don't understand what Viking's built in grill is like and think it's a glorified grill-pan of some sort, which it isn't.  It's a grill just like an outdoor grill but mounted on your indoor stove top, and things cooked on it taste just the same as they would cooked on any gas-fired, outdoor grill.  Maybe not as good as a live-oak fire, but pretty darn nice.

post #12 of 13

The reason I said "several people" without naming specific names was because I chose, for once, not to be a boor.

 

BDL

post #13 of 13

Let me clarify my comments a bit, lest I appear ignorant about integrated grills. There's little difference to speak of in performance between a gas grill indoors and a gas grill outdoors. My only point was that if you already have a good outdoor grill, go for the flat top, because of its versatility. However, if you don't have a good grill, or live in an area where an outdoor grill is unusuable for several months of the year due to cold, then you might consider the grill.

 

In the end, it all goes back to what methods of cooking you tend towards.

"We make our food; thereafter, our food makes us." - Winston Churchill (with a slight modification)
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"We make our food; thereafter, our food makes us." - Winston Churchill (with a slight modification)
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