Weber will be busy in 2024 launching a new set of outdoor cookers, including a gas griddle and wood pellet grill. These aren’t just iterations on previous models, but rather innovative steps on improving the process of grilling, searing and smoking anything you want to cook inside.

There’s also tech involved in a few interesting ways Weber claims will be game-changing for people who love to grill outside. I got to experience these in person at a farm north of Las Vegas, and here’s my quick take on them.

A rust-resistant griddle

If you’re into griddles, the new Slate griddle is what Weber calls the “industry’s first rust-resistant griddle with consistent, edge-to-edge heat and a state-of-the-art digital temperature display.” In basic terms, Weber re-engineered the cooking surface to use a manufacturing process more common in the auto industry to ward off rust over time. While you still need to clean and care for it like any other griddle, the surface’s unique properties mean you can even scrape off any rust that might appear.

Not only that, but it won’t need any pre-seasoning because it will be ready out of the box. Once ignited, the Slate can distribute heat evenly across the entire surface with a max temperature of 500 Fahrenheit (260 Celsius). It only takes 10 minutes to get that hot too. It’s unclear how exactly the patent-pending valve and burner system do this, but onboard sensors will keep track of any outdoor temperature fluctuations, all of which is visible on an LED screen at the front.

A chef on-site cooked scallops on the Slate with ease, noting he had no concern over whether one part of the cook top was cooler than another. Once done, he only squirted some water on the surface, wiped it with paper towel and that was it. The scallops were delicious.

The Slate will come in a 30-inch model in Canada with the rust-resistant cook top and a five-year limited warranty. There will even be “Weber Works” accessories to convert the Slate’s side tables into meal prep and serve areas, plus two portable Traveller models for tabletops that will come in 17- and 22-inch sizes.

A pellet grill with temperature adjustments

The Searwood is a pellet grill with the ability to generate intense heat at up to 600 Fahrenheit, but is also adaptable in how and when it pushes that heat. There’s also a hint of AI here through what it calls its RapidReact PID (Proportional Integral Derivative) controller, which essentially means it can track the cooking process to monitor changes. It particularly applies to what’s happening around it, like repeated gusts of wind or colder temperatures, where the Searwood will adjust on the fly to maintain the internal temperature. This even happens when the lid is open—a surprising twist, considering open lids are far more susceptible to changing conditions.

An LCD screen to the right offers some guidance in that respect, but you would also get a notification from the Weber Connect app noting these changes. With a sizable wood pellet basin, you could smoke whatever meat or veggies you wanted, and then sear them in another part of the grill for that crispy texture on the outside without affecting the juicy ones inside.

A cast-aluminum cook box is unusual for a grill like this, but Weber says its heat distribution is what makes the smart features on the Searwood more effective. On the fly adjustments should offer peace of mind that neither cold spots or outside temperature drops adversely affect what you’re cooking. In other words, if you wanted to smoke something or run a rotisserie spit of chickens, you won’t necessarily have to worry about whether the cooking was even or not.

There will be two models coming to Canada: the Searwood 600 will be a 24-inch, while the 600 XL will be a 36-inch. It is possible to also use either one with a griddle cooking top, but Weber isn’t making one with the same treatment process in the Slate’s cooktop.

Check out all the latest Weber grills and accessories available now, along with all the other BBQ grills and products at Best Buy.

Ted Kritsonis
Editor Cellular/Mobile Technology
I’m a fortunate man in being able to do the fun job of following and reporting on one of the most exciting industries in the world today. In my time covering consumer tech, I’ve written for a number of publications, including the Globe and Mail, Yahoo! Canada,, Canoe, Digital Trends, MobileSyrup, G4 Tech, PC World, Faze and AppStorm. I’ve also appeared on TV as a tech expert for Global, CTV and the Shopping Channel.


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