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Product Review: Don't burn your money on the Brookstone Grill Alert

If you have a proud grill master in your life, don't bother getting them the Brookstone Grill Alert. It's a talking remote meat thermometer for $69.95, and for me, it was just more trouble than it was worth.

Grill_alert A wireless remote alerts you from as far away as 300 feet when food reaches the desired temperature. The belt-clip monitor uses two AA batteries and thermometer transmitter uses two AAA batteries.

The monitor interface is easy to program. Just pick the type of meat (like hamburger, steak, chicken, fish) and how you want it cooked (rare, medium rare, medium or well done). It'll alert you when the food has reached USDA temperature guidelines and should be done cooking.

Seems the engineering brains behind this don't do much grilling.

For starters, the thermometer probe is awkward. The directions say the probe's cord is not supposed to touch the grilling surface, so forget about closing the grill cover.

When I tested it on steaks, I knew the steaks were cooked long enough to be done medium, but the temperature probe kept saying it wasn't near the proper temperature for medium. Good thing I didn't go by that, or I might have had a lousy, dry steak.

And if you're giving this to someone who never grilled before, it might not be helpful, either. There's nothing in the booklet about basic cooking instructions -- you can't abandon the food completely and only depend on the monitor; after all, you have to flip your meat!


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