Cold craft beer, sunscreen, a set table, and a family to feed—this scene is familiar, as grilling has become a backyard tradition everywhere in North America. Since Montreal is full of talented chefs, we have asked a handful of them to share their own tips and tricks to guarantee a perfect grill.

To your barbecues!

Tips for a Perfect Grill: Do not flatten your burgers!

“When I see someone using his spatula to flatten his burger patties on the grill, my hair curls! All this does is remove the moisture and flavor from the patties. Leave your patties alone!”
– Josh Lauridsen, chef at Garde Manger

Garde Manger
408 Rue Saint François Xavier

Preheat your grill

“Avoid using your grill while it is still not hot enough. If you make that mistake, your meat will take an eternity to cook, which dries the meat and prevents the meat from turning golden brown and delicious. To ensure a perfect grill, preheat your barbecue as hot as it goes, brown the meat, and, if necessary, finish cooking over a lower heat.”
– Jason Bivall, head chef of restaurant Harlow

Harlow
438 Place Jacques Cartier

Take the meat out of the fridge in advance

“You have to bring your meat to room temperature before cooking it. Do not take the meat from the fridge and directly put it on the grill! You will end up with meat that is charred outside and raw inside. Allow the meat to reach room temperature first before grilling.”
– Ross Louangsignotha, head chef of Hà


243 Avenue du Mont-Royal Ouest

Let the meat rest after cooking

“You have to let your meat rest after grilling. It is very important to set aside time for it to rest in order for it to retain its juiciness. When cooking beef, remove it from the grill and wait for several minutes before putting a knife through it!”
– Pascal Turgeon, chef-owner of restaurant Tandem

Tandem
586 Villeray

 

“It’s simple: the rest time should be as long as the cooking time. Your meat cooked for five minutes? Let it rest for five minutes!”
– Sébastien Harrison-Cloutier, chef of Grumman 78 HQ

Grumman 78 HQ
630 Rue de Courcelle

Leave your meat in peace!

“Do not play with your meat. The more you move it around, the less contact it has with the grill, which means that the grill’s temperature will fluctuate. All these factors prevent you from getting a good caramelization on your meat, and you will end up boiling your meat instead of getting the perfect grill.”
– Adam Zaitouni, chef of restaurant Henri Saint-Henri

Henri Saint-Henri
3734 Notre-Dame Ouest

Turn your meat at 45-degree angles to make beautiful grill marks

“A common but discouraged practice is turning the meat too many times. Turn your meat at 45-degree angles to make tile patterns. Place the meat on the grill, and let it cook for a few seconds. Then turn it at a 45-degree angle, and let it cook for as long. Keep rotating it and letting it cook for the same period until you form a tile. Now it’s ready.”
– Olivier Vigneault, head chef of restaurant Jatoba

Jatoba
1184 Place Phillips

Control the flames

“It is absolutely necessary to control the fire to prevent the flames from burning the meat. People tend to burn meat, especially the fat. I prefer to have crispy fat and tender meat.”
– Matt Doyle, head chef of restaurant Lea

Lea
4922 Sherbrooke Ouest

Season generously

“It is very important to season your steak aggressively and evenly, and do not forget to season the fat! Salt is very important when grilling!”
– Joe Mercuri, chef at the restaurant Mercuri

Mercuri
645 Rue Wellington

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