The Most Important Tool For Safe Grilling, According To Rodney Scott - Exclusive

Rodney Scott has been grilling and smoking meats since he was a child. With over 30 years of experience under his belt, and five popular restaurants in Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina, it's safe to say the pitmaster knows a thing or two about grilling. He has barbecue secrets that include what wood to use, the best grill, and, of course, tips for a perfect summer BBQ-Cuterie. But if there's one thing you need when grilling, it's the right tools. 

We were lucky enough to talk to the barbecue maven at the newly opened Netflix pop-up restaurant where he shared with us the tool he thinks every grillmaster should have at the ready no matter if they're just starting out or have been grilling for decades: a set of tongs. 

Tongs can come in a variety of sizes. But Scott says to specifically get a long pair for the grill. "You need a long pair and a good pair because you can reach in without burning your knuckles because, with all the grilling, you can sometimes get your knuckles a little blistered," the chef explains as he points to his own knuckles.

The right pair of tongs is key

Tongs make cooking so much easier because they can be used in every step of the grilling process from prepping to plating. But with so many different types of kitchen tongs available, how do you know which pair is best? Rodney Scott says you want a "heavy-duty" set, the kind that is usually made up of two pieces of stainless steel connected by a spring or hinge. "If they don't click right, don't get them," the pitmaster explains. "If they don't spring back, don't get them. Because if they spring back tightly, you have a good set of tongs."

That spring back that Scott's referring to comes from the hinge, and the hinge is actually the "biggest indicator" of the quality of a set of tongs, according to The Kansas City Star. It should be loose but not too loose and that "click" needs to be easy to apply. If either of these things isn't just right, you could drop your meat or burn your hand, and that's just what Scott is trying to prevent.