Portable gas grills have traditionally been pretty lousy, single-burner jobs with limited cooking space. That's why portable charcoal grills have remained popular, cooking faster and hotter. The tradeoff is they make a mess when transported. You also have to wait until the grill is cool before throwing it in your trunk, unless you have a convenient place to ditch burning coals.
The Weber Q 200 is the midsize portable grill in The Weber Q Series and was the Original Q Grill before the family expanded. It has a very respectable cooking surface of 280 square inches, enough room to cook about 15 burgers and the cast iron grate heats evenly across the entire surface. The grill has a push button starter and heats up rather quickly; ready to go in about 5-10 minutes. This is great for family outings, concerts, and sporting events when you want to eat on the go.
One of the coolest things about this grill is how versatile it is. It easily folds up and can be put away in the smallest of storage spaces. The unique U-shaped burner allows for even heat distribution—no hot or cold spots. The side trays, which resemble wings, add a lot of extra storage.
Weber makes plenty of accessories for this grill, including a Stationary Cart and a Rolling Duffel Bag. I brought my Weber Q to a softball game last summer and about five people asked me where they could buy one. Many renters, second-home owners, and people who grill occasionally are also buying Q’s as a primary grill because they can be stored easily. If you are going to do this, make sure you buy the kit that will attach the Q to a traditional propane tank so that you don’t have to keep buying the disposable 14.1 or 16.4-ounce cylinder refills. Overall the Q200 and the Q220 are great grills, definitely worth the money.
Weber Q Models & Variations Family
If you’re willing to invest around $200 to purchase the Weber Q 200 (396002), an extra 50 dollars will get you the upgraded model, the Weber Q 220 (566002). In my opinion this is the best buy—you get a taller lid and built-in thermometer. The taller lid is particularly handy for grilling large items like chicken. If you are tight on space or want to travel light, I would suggest learning more about the Weber Baby Q 100/120. On the contrary, if you are willing to spend the money and have the room, I strongly suggest the new top-of-the-line Weber Q 300/320, which includes two burners for direct and indirect cooking, a stationary cart, a thermometer, and much more. The Q 300/320 can grill a 12-pound turkey.
Some may think the Weber Q 200 is overkill for the occasional tailgate party. Maybe so, but it’s still very cool. The only problem is that the grill needs to cool down before you can fold the side trays back in. Also, be careful with the off switch—it’s on the opposite side of the dial than you would expect. I accidentally left mine on the first time and ran through the gas.