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The Whole World on Your Grill

In a city of a thousand cuisines, why stop at steak?

Mexico | Greece | Japan | China | Thailand | Italy | India

Styling by William Smith  

We think of grilling as an all-American pursuit. It’s a perfectly charming thought, conjuring images of fat Weber grills spilling over with glistening porterhouses, barbecued chicken, and hot dogs. The thing is, man has been grilling since he discovered fire, and just about every culture since has seared one thing or another over an open flame. Nowhere will you find a more diverse collection of fire-cooked foods than in New York. To celebrate the city’s embarrassment of grilling riches, we asked seven of the most renowned ethnic chefs in town—Mercadito’s Patricio Sandoval (Mexican), Onera’s Michael Psilakis (Greek), Masa’s Masa Takayama (Japanese), Rickshaw Dumpling Bar’s Anita Lo (Chinese), Kittichai’s Ian Chalermkittichai (Thai), Una Pizza Napoletana’s Anthony Mangieri (Italian), and Devi’s Suvir Saran (Indian)—to design a complete summer menu, starring a main course cooked on the grill, plus a perfectly matched side, dessert, and drink. We sifted through the latest grilling gear with extreme prejudice to offer a selection of only the best gadgets. And so that you might sharpen your own barbecuing skills, we asked an avid West Village griller to allow Food Network star and grill master Bobby Flay to observe—and critique—his grilling technique. How did our test subject do? As you’ll see, we’ve come a long way since man discovered fire.