With perhaps the last late summer weekend ahead, he can be taken out of the shed again: the barbecue. The instrument appears to be a means to impress family and friends. For example, one in three Dutch 'garden grillers' views his or her schedule as a status symbol, according to research by comparison website Kieskeurig.nl.
Imagine: a large, striking barbecue that catches the eye at a specially created spot in the garden. Next to it stand beautiful hanging luxury items, such as a leather apron and stainless steel kitchen aids. You will increasingly see this sketched image in Dutch backyards.
Barbecues are looked up all year round
Research among 1,042 Dutch people on the Kieskeurig.nl comparison website shows that 30 percent of Dutch people see the barbecue as a status symbol. Barbecues from the more luxurious segment are sought all year round. People are looking for barbecues that they can use to make a good impression. Ceramics are especially popular.
“Fire, burning, smoke. I love that. I'm a man, right? ”Danny van der Wee (44) from Tilburg, barbecues weekly
When barbecuing is often determined by the weather. According to a survey by the Vereniging van Keursslagers from 2017, three quarters of the Dutch only light the barbecue when the weather is nice.
Danny van der Wee (44) from Tilburg works at the Ministry of Finance and barbecuet, when it is dry, weekly. "I've been doing it for years, but it's getting bigger and better. Fire, burning, smoke. I love that. I'm a man, right? And my kids love to eat it."
It started at the campsite, with a small barbecue. After that he became a member of a forum about barbecuing and started to try new things more and more. He wanted a bigger and better barbecue on which he could prepare other dishes. He thought "1,000 euros for an even more professional". He bought one of 47 centimeters. "It must remain a hobby."
Danny likes to fish in his barbecue. That is not possible with much more expensive barbecues. (Photo: Danny van der Wee)
More than 1,400 euros in barbecue equipment
Someone who has invested a lot of money in his barbecues is Daan van der Vaart (28) from Mijdrecht. He spent 1,400 euros on two copies, but much more on everything around it; for example, it has a grill spit, cast iron items and a leather apron.
Van der Vaart is proud of it, but he does not see his barbecues as a status symbol. "For me, they stand for socializing with friends and acquaintances. They are also easy to use, because you don't have to wait all day behind the barbecue until your meat is ready."
He puts something on the grid two to three times a week, in weather or in no weather. According to research by the Association of Keursslagers, this makes him one of the 5 percent of Dutch people who can count themselves as "real BBQ fanatics". They cannot be stopped by a bit of rain or wind.
Daan has invested heavily in his hobby. (Photo: Daan van der Vaart)
People with an expensive barbecue can sometimes not do anything with it
Although according to the above study 40 percent of the women prefer to sell the barbeque tongs, that is totally not the case with Eefje van Iersel (39) from Den Bosch. With her, the barbecue is on every week, with her behind it.
In daily life she is also busy with food. She gives cooking demonstrations in stores and has often stood behind an Indonesian food stand. At home she prefers to use an electric grill, a very small charcoal barbecue and a slightly larger one. "I am not at all materialistic and an expensive barbecue says little to me."
"Some people with an expensive barbecue can do nothing more than put a satay on it." Eefje van Iersel, experienced barbecue
According to her, an expensive barbecue belongs to people who always want to have everything in order; who have a nice car at the door and have an expensive watch on the wrist. "I sometimes have to laugh at that, because people with such an expensive barbecue can sometimes do nothing more than put a piece of it on it."
While according to all three barbecue lovers you can do so much more with it. Van der Wee prefers to put his meat on the barbecue for hours to let it cook at a low temperature. He uses a cold and hot zone in the barbecue so that he can grill his meat on the hot and cook on the cold zone. "It doesn't burn like that and doesn't turn into a shoe sole."
Van der Vaart also likes to make meat like pulled pork, which has to cook slowly. The very best tip he can give is to take the time and buy a good piece of meat. "Then you will enjoy your dish so much more."
See also: Grilling without stress: Tips for a successful and safe barbecue
It doesn't matter where the barbecue comes from
According to Van Iersel, if you like slow cooking, it would be handy to invest in a barbecue with a lid, but if you don't have a budget for that, just like she currently does, then she thinks it's fine too a cheap barbecue. "I can cook very well, I am known for that. Whether it comes from an Action thing or from a Weber, it doesn't matter. You just have to be more patient and pay attention."
The biggest barbecue lovers come according to the research of the Association of Keursslagers from Limburg, Utrecht and Flevoland. It is the least popular in South Holland, Drenthe and Friesland.