Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Atlanta, home of Big Green Egg fanatics

Posted By on Wed, Jul 13, 2011 at 9:30 AM

biggreenegg.jpg
John T. Edge's latest piece in his "United Tastes" series in the New York Times is set in Atlanta. It's about Japanese kamado grills which were popularized in this country by an Atlanta business operator who marketed them as "Big Green Eggs":

IN 1974, Ed Fisher opened a store here called the Pachinko House to sell the upright pinball games of that name that he imported from Japan. He also shipped in ovoid earthenware grills called kamados. But they only collected dust in the back of that strip-mall storefront until he began cooking chicken wings with them and fanning the smoke toward the street to attract shoppers.

“We were selling something called a kamado from a place named after a pachinko,” recalled Mr. Fisher, who first saw the charcoal-fueled cookers in the 1950s as a Navy lieutenant in Japan. “That didn’t sound American, and that wasn’t easy. But once I got people to try one, once they tasted the chicken we cooked on them, they were hooked.”

Giving them a distinctive green, dimpled surface and a catchy name helped. So did that cool shape, which looked somehow countercultural when compared with conventional grills.

Check it out. Apparently, Atlanta residents and chefs are the biggest Big Greenies anywhere.

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