I got a voice mail from my Buddy Kenny the other day saying he found a deal for me at Tuesday Morning. “Hmm”, I thought, “didn’t know I was in the market for a new silk flower arrangement”. I was intrigued more to find out what Kenny was doing in that store than the actual deal, so I called him back. I never really understood the idea of a “closeout store”, it always reminded me of that guy that stops you in the parking lot with those “extra speakers we had on a job”. Turns out that this closeout store had a $400 tailgating grill for $250 and they had only one left. Grill? Tailgating? Deal? I wasn’t about to let someone snag that kind of deal…
Turns out this tailgating grill was a Freedom Margaritaville Grill. I have admired these things at various events for a long time, but couldn’t get permission to purchase. The Freedom grills lock into your vehicle’s hitch and swing out of the way so that you can cook on it without even removing it from the vehicle. This time I decided to ask for forgiveness, rather than permission from my lovely wife. I body-checked a few closeout shoppers that looked a little too interested in this grill, loaded it into my vehicle and headed home.
Assembly on this thing was a breeze. I had it all put together in about 20 minutes. Tailgate grill installed on the car and no place to go? No sweat, let’s try this bad-boy out on a Saturday afternoon. By the way, the Margaritaville grill has another great advantage. The box it comes in is the perfect size to make a play house for a 1 year old (and his 5 year old brother). How do I know? I had the kids that afternoon, how else was I to keep them occupied to try out my new grill?
I didn’t have a small propane tank to use, but luckily the grill comes with a hose to attached a regular, full-size tank. One quick push of the igniter and she was lit. After about 20 minutes (enough time to cut a new window and higher roof on the box playhouse) I threw on some wings to see how she cooked.
What’s the verdict for this first cooking session on the Freedom grill? Overall, I think it’s going to be a great grill for the games next year. It didn’t seem to get hot enough to properly sear a steak and the cooking was a little uneven for my tastes, but who cares. The convenience and looks of this thing far out-weighs the performance. Next step is a custom paint job…more on that soon!