Why America’s Original Grill Company Remains An Industry Leader

David Hochman

Modern Home Products created the first backyard gas grill for consumers in 1960, and the company remains an old-fashioned American standard in the best sense. While other grill companies outsource production to China, MHP continues casting its units in the Midwest and crafting each grill at its factory in Antioch, Illinois, at a level of quality you just don’t find with other mass-market grills in this price range.

“A level of quality you just don’t find with other mass market grills in this price range.”

For weeks, I scoured big-box stores and review sites for a grill to replace my rusted-out old Weber. I wanted a workhorse that could withstand the heat and sun of Southern California and handle year-round chicken and ribs (this is L.A., after all). I also didn’t want to re-mortgage the house to afford it.

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MHP WNK4 Grill

Although MHP makes a large, newer styled stainless grill, the WNK4 is the largest model that retains their classic design. Made with cast aluminum, it is practically indestructible. It will withstand harsh weather, abuse, and never rust. MHP owners love to brag about how old their grill is, how they never clean it, and especially how they never cover it. I remember these big black boxes on ground posts when I was growing up. Not having seen one up close since my childhood, I was struck by the old fashioned appearance. Whether they’re dated or classic is in the eye of the beholder. In the 60s this cast aluminum design was the rule rather than exception. It is still made by a few other companies like PGS right here in the USA. But you won’t find these at any big box store where almost every grill is steel and, more often than not, made in China.