With baseball season here and football right around the corner, sports fans everywhere are dusting off their portable chairs, canopies and camping stoves to practice the beloved American pastime of tailgating.
It's food and fun for the whole family, right? Well, not if you're the guy stuck in the corner behind the grill and screened off from the action behind a wall of smoke. Bravo Sports has eliminated that problem, though, with the Blacktop 360 Party Hub Grill Fryer.
"With the Blacktop you put the grill in the middle and people congregate around it," says Chief Branding Officer Mark Heineken. "It's a more social environment. We call it social cooking instead of grilling."
And whatever you do, don't call it a grill. The Blacktop 360 has a warming section, griddle, infrared burned capable of over 600 degrees and a 16 oz. deep fryer in the center. This circular machine goes way beyond burgers and hot dogs.
"One of the favorite things we cook when we go tailgating is fish tacos," Heineken says. "We fry the fish in the middle, warm the tortillas and cook the onions on the griddle."
With 452 square inches of cooking surface, there isn't much it can't handle. Heineken has seen it used to deep fry olives, make fondue, fried rice and even barbecue sauce in the center while ribs or steaks are cooking.
And at roughly 35 pounds, the Blacktop 360 is easily portable. That was the most important factor as the Bravo Sports team was designing it. The machine quickly collapses and fits in a carrying case to go anywhere. The Blacktop 360 is popular with everyone from campers to NASCAR to baseball and football fans.
But you don't have to be a sports fanatic to enjoy the best new innovation in tailgating.
"Thirty percent of people who attend tailgate parties never go into the game," Heineken says. "They just go for the social aspect of it."
And now the guy who used to be behind the grill can join in.
-- Adam Watson is the food czar at ThePostGame. You can follow him on Twitter @AdamKWatson.
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