These are the best barbecues to fire up this summer

Take it from us: this summer is guaranteed to see in the reign of the barbecue, in all its many and varied forms. Outdoor gatherings will (unsurprisingly) be all the rage over the next few months, and you’ll need to feed those hungry hoards – so there’s no better time to invest in a new piece of outdoor cooking kit.

Whether you’re looking for a portable grill for road-tripping adventures, a huge charcoal beast for a royal-standard meal or a more eco-friendly option to save the world, these are the best barbecues to fire up this summer.

A portable barbecue is an exciting thing. Suddenly, the world is your oyster, your sausage, your beefburger. Wherever you want to light the coals and cook yourself a feast, you can. Lakeside in the Swiss Alps? Along the Italian Riviera? High on the Yorkshire Moors? With these nifty bits of kit, you’ll open up a tasty world of culinary opportunity.

But don’t go for a disposable, or a B&Q basic. Instead, opt for something with a little more design flair. Mon Oncle’s charcoal barbecue is an elegant steel briefcase, equipped with fabric strap and retro feel. BergHOFF’s Table BBQ comes in carbon steel with a handy cork base/lid. And UNA’s portable offering comes in a variety of striking colours, and can be carried vertically from a quality leather strap.

We’re always looking to cut down our emissions: but there’s something undeniably primal about lighting coals. So if you want to keep your barbecue passions burning, we wouldn’t blame you – but, even if you’re an old-fashioned griller, the least you can do is buy a piece of kit that does more than your usual, garden-variety barbecue.

From masters of the grill, Big Green Egg, comes the brand’s extra large model. Not only does this come with an acacia wood preparation table, it can also cook pizzas, smoke ribs or even roast a chicken, if you’re not quite ready to give up your hearty Sunday roasts just yet. Likewise, Azuma Rhino’s portable number not only has an aesthetic appeal (who said barbecues couldn’t be attractive?), but it’s also efficiency in one sleek package with its wheels, side table and even a bottle opener. Or, for the most adventurous of cooks, Heston Blumenthal’s Everdure hub barbecue is characteristically innovative — boasting a 40kg rotisserie system, no less. Let’s get those beef fillets turning. 

If, like us, you’re always trying to go green, then we’ve got good news for you (and for the planet, too). Electric barbecues may take that charmingly eye-watering, all-your-clothes-smell-like-smoke appeal out of the traditional grilling technique — but this way you can save the world and enjoy your sausages in one tasty fell swoop. 

Weber are leading the electric charge in this department: their brand new Genesis and Spirit smart barbecues have combined with the Weber Connect technology to bring aspiring grillers the ultimate modern barbecuing experience, complete with step-by-step guide. George Foreman, too — yes, he of the grills — has also come out swinging, with a sleekly packaged, unobtrusive electric number, complete with temperature controls aplenty. Or go for the ever-reliable Tower, whose Indoor and Outdoor Party Grill (yes, that really is its name) is the ideal option for all those garden parties we hope you’ll be having. 

Happier leaving the food preparation to the experts? These are London’s 10 best outdoor restaurants

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