The New BBQ Trend emerged in Cologne
Have you ever heard of Spoga? It is one of the largest, but mainly, the most important European fair dedicated to Outdoor Living and is held every year in Cologne, Germany. The dedicated space is immensely large with 11 pavilions on different floors, among which the barbecue has been able to carve out an ever more important space in the years, this edition has arrived at two pavilions, to which it adds a further occupied entirely and exclusively by Weber who plays a bit a lead role in Germany. For these reasons, the Spoga is considered by fans as the natural showcase through which to be able to see new products and new trends for the next season.
For the third year in a row we have been here in Cologne to find out in which direction the European barbecue will be moving in the near future and our expectations are rarely disappointed. This is a very rich edition, which probably did not have the assortmental upheavals that characterized last season, but a thickening of the substrate on which companies operate and develops.
The main trends we have found are:
- A drastic drop in the presence of Chinese producers, those who offered at half-price a shameless copy of the X-branded Y-model, which could have been this year and disappear from the market in the next one, to leave room for smaller European companies which often interesting, newly conceived and good quality products.
- Enhancement of the proposal of companies collateral to manufacturers of devices, such as coal, lighters, sauces and rubs, accessory importers and producers, witnessing a greater interest from the consumer towards widening the possible practical applications allowed by the branch.
- Finally, we were surprised to find out how much the market has moved this year towards completing the offer in outdoor kitchens, through the proposal of recessed equipment lines, hobs, refrigerators.
Trying to focus on companies operating in Italy we try to make a point on what we will see in our country in the 2018 barbecue season. We could only start by Weber, very strong on the German market and that has always invested a lot on Spoga, so much that it has its own pavilion dedicated to be used as a stage for the European presentation of its own novelty. On these same spaces in secret events accessible only by nominal invitation we saw the launch of Summit Charcoal and Genesis II, just to say a couple of names.
This was the year of the nenewal of the electric power supply line through the introduction of a new model. It was known for a while, but Weber is always very good at not letting anything more leap out of service, creating a lot of expectation. The newborn is called Pulse and it is something that has ever been seen, which strongly point the eye towards an evolving consumer who seeks to exploit the potential of the previous Q model rather than living in a very urban context: much modernity, effectiveness and practicality, less poetry. The main features are the following:
- The Pulse moves its center of gravity to the home appliance world: there is one (or two depending on the model) front knobs through which the delivered is not controlled but you can control the target temperature instead of the intensity of heat, which appears on a fine bright display. It will take care of all the rest.
- The iGrill up to four probes is integrated, governed by a dedicated app, in addition to a host of remarkable accessories, including a rotisserie
- Compared to the electric Q, the insulation has been greatly improved, allowing to smaller model a lower absorption and to improve the performance of the larger ones
- It was introduced the double coil, each dedicated to one half of the cooking area, allowing at last to embrace the indirect cooking as well.
- The front console of the controls can simply be removed by pressure so that it can be easily retracted into a special case and allow easy washing of the parts exposed to fat and cooking residues.
- Following the recent trend of the latest Weber borns, the Pulse will also be for many but not for everyone, with entry prices around 500 to get up to 1000 € of the larger and tracked version.
Other great novelties in terms of devices have not been seen than ever in the definition or definitive improvement of existing models. Broil King presents an interesting addition to the Monarch: it adds to the basic equipment a back burner and a rotisserie, obtaining a model that at a price around 950 € offers a lot. Other big new features are the new forged steel grids: incredibly light and durable, promising the same performances of cast iron but with the cleaning convenience of the steel. It closes with the introduction of a complete recessed line for which a range of modular elements has been studied, easy to assemble and certainly aesthetic impact.
Napoleon launches the Rogue, the model that make as affordable by everyone the Canadian Producer’s distinctive features, such as the infrared burner previously presented only of the bigger models, introducing this year a two-burner model, lowering further its entry price on the line. Another great innovation, always in line with the development of the outdoor kitchen, is the definition of a wide range of possible plans and finishes of their own recessed modules, defining a dedicated catalog to offer to the customer.
OutdoorChef will market in 2018 the DualChef, already anticipated in the last edition. Prerequisites are very high performance and an innovative form of burners that would ensure uniform performance at the top of the category. However, the main feature is the ability to divide the cooking chamber through a bulkhead, creating two cooking areas even with significant temperature differences.
Monolith introduces as accessory a round plate whose diameter is about twenty centimeters larger than the kamado, turning it into one of those tools around which everyone can cook their own food, following the fashion of dedicated wood gears in vogue in northern europe . This year is also launched an exclusive model created by collaboration with BBQ Guru who sees already installed the fan of the famous temperature management system in a dedicated input without having to install it in the vent in spot.
Lotus launches this year its XXL, a classic kettle size version of the gear always working with the principle of forced ventilation that allows indoor cooking and avoid smoke that has made it famous.
We close with a recent introduction on the Italian market, the one of Fornetto, which presents to Spoga his new Kamado as always with its really innovative and unusual forms and with Primo that perhaps in Italy will never come that has launched his new Gas kamado.
Would you like to be in Spoga? What new products would you like for the Italian market in 2018?