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Can anyone give me the price of a XL BGE?

Hmm, Where BGE is only sold by local retailers (no online sales) i've heard prices all over the board. If you end up going that route, be mindful of the cost of accessories that you will need/want : nest, side tables, plate setter, etc.

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stick burners are a really cool concept.  You mention in your post that you do not compete and that it is for home use.  In my honest opinion I wouldn't use a stick burner for home cooking.  You need to source quality wood, and like CC mentioned you are way more involved with the cook, not to mention the mess and clean up.  

 

You will 100% get more of a smoke flavour, but at what cost???  Is the longevity worth it??  

 

I have done cooks low and slow on the kamado, and used almost frozen meat.  The colder the meat the longer the smoke will impart into it.  I have also, loaded serious amount of chunks at the beginning, creating wonderful blue smoke flavour.  

 

I have transitioned from a WSM and found that yes I did have more of a smoke flavour in my cooks, however, the dirty water and cleaning of the WSM turned me right off.

 

I found the kamado to be the top dog for backyard BBQ.  It does it all

 

I agree that it is time to upgrade to a larger kamado and a ceramic.  Figure out your budget to start that is the key.  If money is no object you can get a 32" komodo kamado or the 23" ultimate KK.  They are between 4000 and 6000 base.  This is not ceramic but refractory cement.

 

Primal Oval XL is another big dog, they are just under 2000.00 from what I can see

 

BGE XL is another one.  They are in the 1500-1800 range however, they are al a carte so to speak.  You need to add all the accessories, ie. nest, side tables, plate setter etc etc. That gets the price up

 

Kamado Joe Big Joe would be the next.  They are around the 1500.00 mark all in.  They come with side table, nest, divide and concur, x rack, ash tool, ash pan, grill gripper.  

 

So............

 

I am totally 100% bias as I own three kamado joes, but think that I have a handle on all of the brands.  I would say that you can not go wrong with any of the ones that I have listed.  They are all wonderful grills and you will produce great quality.  

 

I think KJ is the way to go based on price, customer service, and warranty.  They take great care of their customer and you get equal cooking space to the BGE at a lower price point.  So for me it is  a no brainer.

 

Saying that, if I could swing it, I would get a KK. 

 

Each of these are top quality, they will all produce the same results.  Do you want BMW, Mercedes or Rolls Royce is what it comes down to.  

 

hope that this helps

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For simple price comp, in my limited shopping in the Kansas City area, a local Ace Hardware had an XL-BGE for $1,200 and a KJ-Big Joe with a regular price of $1,500. They were phasing out KJ and going to strictly BGE, so the KJ stuff was 25% off of that price. Regardless, those were the two regular/retail price points for these two big-boy grills. $1,200 and $1,500. But as Freddy just pointed out, you really have to look at what you get for the price. The BGE-XL at twelve-hundred, was just the Egg and a standard grate to cook on. Nothing else. No plate-setter, no nest or table or any accessories at all. The Big Joe, for full retail fifteen-hundred, was a total package, well equipped unit, ready to hit the ground running. It had the 'nest' or really sturdy metal stand on wheels, etc. it had the nice fold-down side table/shelf things. But for me, the REAL difference is the 'Divide and Conquer' system of racks, grates, ceramic heat deflectors, etc. Having that ginormous amount of space inside either grill is incredible. The difference, IMO, is that KJ gives you the incredible D&C system to really USE all that space. With the split deflectors and grates, I can't begin to explain the versatility you would have. Both deflectors down, grates up gets you smoking low and slow. At different height levels if desired. When you start moving one deflector up at a different level as the other deflactor, then you start getting into a multitude of different cooking zones, etc. I have no idea how much more of an investment you would need to get that kind of use out of the BGE, but I'm sure it would be substantial. I'm guessing it would be much more than the $300 price difference.

For the disclaimer part of my post, I don't own a BGE or a KJ. I've got a Vision Classic from Sam's. It's great, just fine for the majority of my needs. I could get a second on and be really well set for a long time. You can get the Classic size (18-ish inch) for around $600-700 any time, or much cheaper if you hold out for a sale. I spent another couple hundred on accessories from the CeramicGrillStore.com for deflectors and racks and grates, etc... Similar to the D&C system from KJ. I started with an Akorn, and cooked a ton of great food on it, but the Ceramic of the Vision is a big upgrade for me, in my opinion. I have a good number of other types of grills, including a couple of nice older New Braunfels stick burners. I could make an argument for every grill I own, based on what I feel like cooking with how much 'user participation' I feel like doing. There is definitely a satisfaction to tending a fire and putting in the effort to get a quality cook on a stick burner. Most of the time though, I don't have a full day to commit to that, so they aren't practical, for me, and my busy life. I love my Weber's, but still, a lot more effort involved than with a good Kamado. Love my Pit Barrel Cooker. Great way to do 6-8-10 slabs of ribs, great at hanging some yard-birds, but still- not close to he versatility of a Kamado.

My suggestion, to most people that ask, is to look very seriously at the Big Joe from Kamado Joe. Another option that I've yet to explore would be a Primo-XL. I'm under the impression that those come really well equipped as well. Much more so than the BGE, for roughly the same price point. I have nothing against BGE and have a friend that swears by his, but you really need to look at all the additional cost involved with the egg-cessories to get full functionality out of it. Basically like pricing and comparing two or three cars or trucks. If one model comes really well equipped, you have to compare the other models with the additional costs to 'add-on' all of the crucial accessories. Anyway, that's how I look at it. Good wishes in your pursuit of killer grilling and smoking.

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Dang, Bosco... You snuck your consice well worded post in as I was babbling into mine for half an hour. Much of the same thoughts and opinions, but yours hold more credence since you own the KJ's. Guess great minds think alike. Or Could be as Gump's mamma said 'stupid is as stupid does', but I've read enough of your posts to know that's not the case! ;)

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When I started seriously cooking BBQ, I had a stick burner. I also had a nice gasser. Then along came the Akorn which I purchased and I sold both of the other cookers. There is no comparison between a kamado and other cookers. I will not go back to anything else. I too had an issue with the size of the Akorn and decided to upgrade to a ceramic. I then purchased my Primo XL and have not regret it once. Plenty of room and alot easier to cook with. Temp control is no issue and the versatility of the Primo rack system is amazing. Go the ceramic route and you won't be disappointed. Whatever brand you choose will serve you well but I have a special place in my heart for the Primo. ;-)

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Interesting thread.  There is an obvious sample bias here, but there is also a lot of collective experience on this forum and I believe the collective wisdom is spot on for backyard cooking. 

 

I am mulling adding additional capacity but I think I want something very portable.  I was considering a WSM, but I am leaning towards the pit barrel cooker.  I like that it is smaller than your typical 55 gallon UDS and I am not interested in building and fiddling with a cooker - I just want to cook on it.  The only thing I don't like is that it is designed to be used with briquettes.  I may have to get over that though.

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I went from an Akorn to a Big Joe. Absolutely no comparison. PLENTY of smoke flavor. I kicked around the Primo XL, BGE XL, and the Big Joe for months. Ultimately value was a big factor, customer service was a huge factor. But another huge thing for me was the hinge system. I also didn't like the huge one piece plate setter for the BGE. The divide & conquer system was just a much superior option.

It has LOTS of real estate. And with the extender you can BBQ for 40 - 50 fairly easily.

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Rustwood,

Just a basic point, a pit barrel cooker is not limited to briquettes. It can do lump charcoal with chunks of wood as well.  You are not stuck with the only choice of briquettes. 

The main thing to be aware of is lumps tend to burn hotter than briquettes, so watch your load size, to avoid warping your firebox.

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I have a classic joe, and a joe jr., while my neighbor has a stick burner. We often grill on the same days, the difference being he is continually adding wood to his fire, checking his water pan, moving his food around on the grill. Me--I set it, forget it and get lots of other things done while cooking super moist food. I have purchased my last grill for sure.

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CeramicChef--I thought your post on wood placement was very informative. I also found it interesting that you place your meat in the freezer 45 minutes before going on to the grill. So did I read your post correctly that you just place your smoking wood in a 2 qt Dutch oven with holes drilled in the bottom, and then you place that on your fire? How do you have room for the heat deflector? Do you have a picture of this setup that you could share?

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Rustwood,

Just a basic point, a pit barrel cooker is not limited to briquettes. It can do lump charcoal with chunks of wood as well.  You are not stuck with the only choice of briquettes. 

The main thing to be aware of is lumps tend to burn hotter than briquettes, so watch your load size, to avoid warping your firebox.

 

Agreed, they don't say you can't but they do push people towards using Kingsford Original in their FAQ.  Good to know about adjusting the load size though.

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I have the opportunity to get a new stick burner/smoker. I was wondering what people move to from the kamado? I don't compete and would using for backyard and special events. I was looking at the Yoder Cheyenne. Should I look at something else? What would you move to?

Thanks.

 

Unless I was planning on doing competitions or catering (neither of which are on my horizon), I don't really see a "next step" from the kamado.  The Big Joe has plenty of room for pretty good-sized cooks - if I needed more than that, the only upgrade path I'd consider would either be a second Big Joe or the 32" Komodo Kamado.  I was looking at higher-end pellet feeders before my path led me to the kamado, but after having owned and cooked on my KJ for a couple months now, I'm 100% satisfied with it and wouldn't have anything else.

 

As far as getting enough smoke into your cooks, that hasn't been an issue.  The nice thing about the kamado is that you can get everything from that old-school wood pit BBQ flavor to virtually no smoke flavor at all, just by controlling how much (and what kind of) wood you use for smoke. 

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