BARBIE envy is rife, with a quarter of Queenslanders admitting they bought their new grills to impress friends and neighbours.
But it doesn't always work - a similar proportion say they wish they had spent more on a better barbecue, a survey by online research and ratings service Canstar Blue found.
That could be because, despite enjoying the best barbecuing weather, people in the Sunshine State spend the least on their outdoor cooking appliances - $469, compared to $579 nationally.
"What consumers want is something that offers quality and useability," Canstar Blue spokesman Harrison Astbury said.
"They are looking for barbecues that are easy to use, look after and clean. Many now come with grills you can simply place in the dishwasher.
"But there can definitely be bragging rights with people wanting to get family and friends round to show off their new barbie. Some people are willing to spend thousands of dollars."
Canstar compared six big-selling brands and found Weber was the sizzling standout - the only one to rate five stars overall and for key factors including cooking performance and reliability.
Graphic designer Glenn Scott from Arana Hills said he was delighted with his new Weber Performer kettle barbecue. "I use it for pretty much everything. It's good for slow cooking. The flavour from the charcoal and flames gives food a great taste.''
John Stahoi, manager of Outdoor Furniture and BBQ's at Stafford, said: "We are definitely seeing an increase in customers buying barbecues as we get into spring and summer. One thing we've noticed is the trend for smoking.''
When it comes to food choice, steak is still king of the grill for Queenslanders with 45 per cent naming it as their favourite barbecue food - nearly three times more popular than the next choice, sausages.
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