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Origin Story: Takibi Fire & Grill

Written by: Savanna Frimoth

March 10th , 2023

Origin Story: Takibi Fire & Grill

The Takibi Fire & Grill is one of Snow Peak's flagship products, appreciated for its portable folding structure, sleek profile, and ease of use. Though it's only more recently become beloved by US campers, its story began more than 30 years ago. In the late eighties and early nineties, Japan experienced a major boom in car camping, largely driven by Snow Peak's impact on the Japanese outdoor recreation market. As a result, new campgrounds were developed to meet the demand, and many were designed with spacious grass fields for campers. In addition, most campers enjoyed open fires during their excursions for cooking and warmth.  

However, this meant that any open fires left unsightly black burn patches across the ground, ruining the grass and creating a fire risk during the dryer months. Soon, many campgrounds began implementing campfire bans. However, when Snow Peak's President Tohru Yamai camped with his family, he was displeased when they arrived at the campgrounds to discover unsightly burn marks scattered across the fields in defiance of the regulations. 

These events inspired Tohru to develop the Pack & Carry Fireplace (which later became the Takibi Fire & Grill, with the Grill Bridge and Fireplace Grill added for cooking). The portable fireplace was the first of its kind, with an innovative design that allowed it to fold flat for compact storage. Structured as an inverted pyramid, the Pack & Carry Fireplace has four triangular panels that expand into a receptacle for wood and charcoal.  After extensive field testing, Snow Peak's development team determined that 1.5mm thick stainless steel offered the durability required for high temperatures while still allowing for easy carrying. The new product solved the problem of burnt patches by keeping the fire elevated several inches off the ground, leaving no trace behind. Though it was initially received with some skepticism from customers who were accustomed to building fires on the ground, the easy-to-use fireplace steadily gained popularity and now is one of Snow Peak's most popular items.

The ingenuity of the design earned the Takibi Fire & Grill a Lifetime Design Award in 2021. The Long Life Design Award recognizes products, architecture, and services offered for more than ten years, which continue to be standards beyond the times and can serve as models for future designs.

Today, Takibi Time, or gathering by the fire to share food and drink, is at the crux of Snow Peak's mission. Snow Peakers worldwide have gathered around their Takibi Fire & Grill, enjoying evenings of togetherness under the stars.

Read our How To Takibi Time post for a comprehensive guide to the Takibi Fire & Grill. Once you've perfected your setup, explore our catalog of campfire recipes, including a delicious yakitori guide developed by our friend Takashi. Then, start building your fireside collection and create memorable outdoor gatherings with your friends and family.