All Up in the White House’s Grill…Literally

Regular readers of this blog know that I’m something of a foodie, so you can imagine my excitement at scoring the culinary scoop of the centuminute.  I’m referring, of course, to the apparent Official Cookout Gear of the White House, the Weber Sputnik.


According to a White House staffer, the place is lousy with the things, and they’re used not only to cook outdoor fare for the President, but also by White House staff when the opportunity presents itself.

Oh, but that’s not all.  Behind the trusty Sputnik was a sight to quicken the pulse of any charcoal aficionado:

A chimney starter!


No pile of smoke-billowing Match Light for these folks!

Now, finicky grillers like TV’s Alton Brown swear that if you’re not sporting a Sputnik with a chimney starter, you’re not really grilling.  Personally, I favor the hassle-free convenience of a gas rig, especially since I don’t have a team of production assistants to handle the extra grunt work involved.  (Those are my patented bacon-wrapped bananas.  *not really patented)


The same staffer told me that the President gets a bill for all the food that he, his family, and personal guests eat at the White House.  I checked it out, and it’s true, so next time he asks if you’ve seen the price of arugula lately, you can bet that he has.



  1. Maybe the grill is just a cover for the smoking area??


  2. I love my mini-Sputnik.

  3. Michelle, are you saying that those burgers kinda smell like weed?
    hmmm….secret servicemen on the rooftop must get bored.

    I have used the standard Weber for many years. Although they were good, I am ready for an upgrade. I hope that they have beefed-up the ash clearing damper at the bottom.
    I’ve had two of these, both of them failed at the lower damper first. This model looks to be much sturdier in that area. I must check it out for my next grill.

    The chimneys are nice, but not required. When I feel like being a real purist, I light first with some pecan or hickory, then add charcoal to those short-lived coals.

    It takes an idiot to go wrong using a Weber.
    You can make things fool-proof, but never idiot proof.

  4. And another damned thing……..
    On the standard model, the aluminum ash-catch pan becomes out of round in no time.

  5. I don’t know from sputniks…I gotta stainless monster on the deck.

  6. No, sekanblogger, Im not saying that those burgers smell like weed…

    I was referring to another story I just read on Tommy’s blog, about the President smoking…

    errr…nevermind…long story of some kids I knew that would light up the bbq, to sneak a ciggy….

  7. I’m sure it loves you, too.

  8. Yeah, Michelle I know. I was just being silly.
    Nice to have some interaction, thanks!

    One more thing about grilling.
    I had a pretty haeavy drinking habit for many years (12 years without now), and grilling is one of the favorite drinking activities. When I finally put down the booze, it took a couple of years to get comfortable grilling without craving a beer.

    Pavlov’s dog huh?

  9. I’m going to find out how fast food makes their scrambled eggs so fluffy.
    I betcha it takes a microwave.

  10. You want some irony? I lost my weber when the barn burned down. Sigh…

  11. sekanblogger, YW on the interaction thingy…Im all about that!! LOL

    So, on this drinking thing you had…did you burn alot of your bbq while adjusting? Was it hard to turn the meat, without having something in your other hand?


    I just got such a visual of someone, just totally fucking up their dinner….thanks for the laugh!

    TFritz….that is too damn funny too!…did the weber START the barn fire?, or did the barnfire start the weber???

    this I gotta know!

  12. Hey, ya’ know what? It actaully came out good!
    I took great care to make good food, but by serving time I wasn’t about to eat.
    That would end a good binge way too soon!

    Fritz, I love it!

  13. Oh, I got ya. I don’t comprehend well this long into sobriety…..
    You’re visualizing somebody totally inept without a beer.

    Not surprizingly, now that I think about it….YES!

    I eventually had to kinda relearn ALL behaviors.
    Of course every drunk thinks he great in the sack.
    Yep, hadda re-learn everything.

  14. LOL! Tell me, sekanblogger, ever try Mango Liqueur? It’s a Liqueur from France that might help you–just DON’T, whatever you do, mix it with pharmaceuticals!!

  15. sekanblogger…gotta love the relearning process!

  16. Non BBQ related fire. Would have made a better story if it had been.

  17. Never tried the mango stuff.
    I always wanted to have my own t shirt printed though.
    on the front
    on the back

  18. Sure getting some milage out of this bbq thingy.
    You just never know.
    I’ve written stuff that I thought was so cool it would be viral. 12 views, wow.
    Stuff that I wrote and thought sucked got tons of views/comments.

    You know what, maybe I need a post about ceiling fans.

  19. Michelle you have no idea.
    I used to measure driving distance by how many beers it took to get there.

  20. Sekanblogger: I would freaking buy a shirt like that. \o/

  21. Well Hello Alex….
    opssst….I have a comment awaiting maderation at your bloggie.

    Maybe I should have some shirts printed and take orders?

    I do need a friggin job right now. Hmmm….

  22. “Comment by TFitz on June 13, 2009 10:48 pm

    Non BBQ related fire. Would have made a better story if it had been.”

    Actually no, it wouldn’t have been. The irony relies on the disconnected randomness of the weber burning up. I have no idea whet the ‘me’ of a couple o days ago was thinking. What an asshole that guy is.

  23. Errata: ‘what’ sted whet.

    What an asshole that guy was sted What an asshole that guy is.

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