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Nope, I think it's just for the burn marks. I got one, used it once, and it's sitting in the cabinet.
I'm kinda partial to a product called Grill Grates. They are made of aircraft grade aluminum and sit on top of the regular grates. They are grooved and have raised panels that are designed to raise the surface temp of your grill for better searing. I have used them for steak, seafood, chicken, all with excellent results. Perfect sear marks (I am a big fan of presentation as well) every time. Another nice feature is no flare ups. I tend to use lots of marinades on chicken and fish, and have not had a single flareup. Since I use my gasser more often in the winter that's a big plus for me. Here's a look at a NY Strip and Curried Shrimp from a recent cook. It was pretty cold out so these were done on my gasser in the garage.
My only concern with these is because they sit on top of the regular grates, they can be a little bit of a pain to brush clean.
I am not expert, but i think part of the concept of a cast iron grate is that it can retain the heat better than a SS grate, which would apply for searing steaks. I read somewhere that the when cast iron is desired for steaks and that when you flip are you supposed to flip to un used portion of the cast iron as it will be hotter than the section the meat was just used....again I am not an expert, and I don't know how much diff. you would notice either way...
Regardless, I have a cast iron grate and use it more than the ss grate.
I have the BGE CI grate. I use it every third or forth cook. Steaks and any anything else I'm looking to do a nice sear on. Just another weapon in the arsenal.
"Where the weak grow strong and the strong grow great, Here's to "Down Home," the Old North State!"
Med & XL
Rockwall Texas, just east of Dallas where the humidity and heat meet!
Life is too short to get caught in the fast lane behind somebody slow!
XL, LG, Sm, Mini and Weber for drink holder