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Reef's Lump Comparison


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  • 1 year later...

So I thought the lump to be every bit the visual and aromatic equivalent of the pre-Big Block KJ Lump. It cooked hot and burned long, imo. The particular bags were not well handled which probably accounts for a little more dust and crushed pieces then I’d like to see. But I expect that in bags that appear well worn.

 

At about $12 per 16lb. bag, I will be buying again. 

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I just picked some of this up too.  Can't hardly go wrong at $12 for 16 lbs.  Also got a bag of Jealous Devil to try from Home Depot.

 

I can't believe there's actual charcoal options.  Usually where I live the choices in store are pretty much Cowboy or the empty spot where the Royal Oak bags would be if they weren't sold out.

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42 minutes ago, CentralTexBBQ said:

I bought the last two bags. I'm suspecting @AJS390 had more of a selection. I would have loved to have been more selective 

 

Yeah, mine was definitely from the top of the pallet.  Haven't opened it yet, but it felt pretty good.

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I’m about halfway through a bag of KJ big block. It’s pretty good, especially for the price when on sale. I’ve been using mostly JD, but it’s SO expensive. Tried a bag of RO and it was a total failure. Felt like I needed a mask due to the dust every time I opened the bag.

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19 hours ago, jark87 said:

I’m about halfway through a bag of KJ big block. It’s pretty good, especially for the price when on sale. I’ve been using mostly JD, but it’s SO expensive. Tried a bag of RO and it was a total failure. Felt like I needed a mask due to the dust every time I opened the bag.

 

I've gone through 5 bags of KJ Big Block.

 

I got a 4-pack from Costco last year, and each bag was about the worst charcoal I've ever used.  Nothing but tiny-broken pieces and dust.  I can make any charcoal work, including those bags, but it wasn't worth $5 let alone $20.

 

BUT then I got a bag for free from BBQ Guys when I got my Big Joe.  I told them I hated the Big Block and could they send me something else or just credit me $20, but they said no and sent it anyway.  I reluctantly opened it and used it, and man - it was the best charcoal I've ever used.  Beautiful assortment of pieces, from XL, L, and M (basically no little broken pieces or small pieces), burned clean, almost no temp variations even over 12+ hr cooks, ability to easily go from smoking temps to searing (and bring it down relatively easily, which I would not be able to do with the crap bags) and so on.

 

Bottom line is that even the best charcoal can be ruined by poor handling, and now that I'm out and need more, I'm really nervous about what and where I purchase from since there's just no way to really tell what you're going to get.

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Interestingly, I’ve yet to get a bad bag of JD, and I order it from Amazon, so I imagine it sees the worst handling possible (although it arrives in a box.) I get the version that comes in the plastic bag. I don’t see how that could help, but so far, so good.

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What's everyone's thoughts on the "flavored" lump charcoal - for example, B&B Hickory Lump?  I realize it's not "flavored" and just made from hickory, but given how lump is made, would it really have a strong flavor profile?  Just wondering if you'd still need to use wood chunks if using something like that.

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