The sun is out. People are spending more time outside. Arm hair is singed from coast to coast.

It must be BBQ season.

Made Man is celebrating the unofficial Memorial Day start to BBQ Season with a State of the BBQ survey and package of barbecue tips.

Made Man 2011 BBQ Package

Expert BBQ Tips from Chris Lilly

Things You Didn’t Know You Could BBQ

How to Smoke Ice

BBQ Lemonade Recipe

The Break Media survey (below) provides a snapshot of how 247 American and Canadian men grill and what they think about grilling. The survey covers everything from preferred method of firing up the grill (propane vs. charcoal) to which part of the country serves the best BBQ. (Hint: It’s not Connecticut.)

State of the BBQ 2011 Survey

The key findings: 94 percent of men grill, propane or natural gas is the best way to light a fire and the best beer for barbecuing is … well, you’ll just have to read on to find out.

Note: Answers in italics are not “statistically different.” Essentially, they’re a tie for first or second, even though the percentages are different. It’s a math thing. Just trust us on this one.

Do you own a BBQ or grill (include Foreman-type)?
Yes 89%
No; but I like eating BBQ food 6%
No; but I grill at parks, beaches, friend’s house, etc. 4%
No; but I use one in my residential complex 1%

How do you fire up your BBQ or grill?
Propane or natural gas 64%
Charcoal — briquettes 45%
Charcoal – natural (e.g. mesquite) 26%
Use a Foreman-type 22%
Wood 19%
Wood pellets 1%

How do you use lighter fluid?
Never use it 54%
Sometimes use it 36%
Always use it 10%

Have you ever built a two-zone fire?
Yes 43%
I’m not sure what you’re talking about 30%
No 26%

Who (or what) first taught you how to grill and/or operate the BBQ?
Dad 45%
Self-taught 39%
Mom 4%
Friend 3%
Sibling 2%
Internet 1%
Owners manual 1%
Television / DVD 1%
Grandfather 1%
Other 2%

What day of the week are you most likely to grill?
Saturday 58%
Sunday 19%

Friday 15%
Wednesday 3%
Monday 2%
Thursday 2%
Tuesday 0%

What is the most important tool for barbecuing?
Tongs 60%
Spatula 15%
Thermometer 10%
Brush 5%
Fork 3%
Mitt 1%
Skewers 1%
Other 6%


What is your favorite food to cook (or eat) on the grill?
Steak 50%
Hamburger 16%
Chicken breast 10%
Ribs 10%
Brisket 4%
Hot dogs 3%
Chicken wings 2%
Kabobs 2%
Sausage 2%
Fish/Seafood 1%

What’s the best way to prep a steak?
Rub 30%
Marinade 26%
Salt and pepper 25%
Au natural 9%
BBQ sauce 4%
Worcestershire sauce 4%
Don’t know; I’m not a steak person 2%

I like beef cooked…?
Medium 49%
Rare 20%

Medium-well 23%
Well 6%
Near burnt 2%
I don’t like beef 0%

What is the best place to have a BBQ?
Backyard 80%
Tailgate 6%
Campground 5%
Beach 4%
Park 3%
Ball game 1%

Have you ever had a barbecued cocktail?
No 44%
I’m not sure what you’re talking about 40%
Yes 15%

Beer at a barbecue should be served from a…?
Bottle 64%
Can 22%
Keg 14%

Which of these popular beers tastes best with BBQ food?
Budweiser 21%
Corona 17%
I don’t drink beer 17%
Coors 11%
Miller 11%
Heineken 9%
Michelob 5%
Pabst 5%
Becks 2%
Natural Light 1%
Busch 0%


Which part of the country has the best BBQ?
Texas 30%
North Carolina 15%
Memphis 14%
Kansas City 11%
Louisiana 6%
Alabama 4%
St. Louis 4%
Canada 3%
Georgia/Atlanta 2%
Wash/Oregon 1%
Other 6%
Don’t know 4%

Ketchup on a hot dog is…?
Delicious 66%
Sacrilegious 18%
Disgusting 11%
I don’t eat hot dogs 5%

Cheese goes on a burger…?
While the burger is on the grill 87%
After the burger comes off the grill 11%
Never 1%

What is your favorite BBQ side dish?
Corn on the cob 25%
Beans 19%
Potato salad 19%
French fries 10%
Cole slaw 8%
Chips / pretzels 6%
Macaroni salad 6%
Baked potato 5%
Veggies 2%

A hamburger bun tastes best when it’s…?
Toasted 82%
Not toasted 18%


Want to know what else men are thinking right now? Check out the GUYDE report.