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Best Lump Charcoaled

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I could not find an exact match, but I am looking for opinions on the best lump charcoal.  I have used Royal Oak, a brand out if Canada, sold at the local hardware store, BGE brand and just found Kamado Joe Bug Block locally.   There may be others.  I love cooking on the Kamado, and I am at a point where I need the best charcoal.  Six months and at least 100 Cooks under my belt.  I can use the local stuff from Canada for Pizza with the Dojoe, but it struggles to go overnight at 190.

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A few things, Royal Oak is made in the states and they have a green bag version for the Canadian market. BGE is just rebranded Royal Oak with a premium price. KJ Big Block is made from South American hardwood so it is one of the better lumps on the market. 

 

Check out this thread. It's a long read but if you go through the first 5 posts you'll have a better idea about different lumps. 

 

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, MikeRobinson said:

Maybe the most-honest question might be simply:  "Okay, it's charcoal.  What, exactly, is 'best' ... to you?"

 

Quite obviously, "it matters, to you."  But why?

 

Best for me - no funky smells, burns long for low-n-slow and during high heat cooks, and easily able to get high temperature. Price is a factor for most people but is the worst criteria to use for charcoal. South American hardwood trees are denser than North American hardwood trees and produces a harder longer burning lump. KJ Big Block, Jealous Devil, and Fogo Quebracho are three examples of good South American hardwood lumps. 

 

 

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Ive been the most happy with Kamado Joe Big Block. I like the flavor it gives off, it burns for a very long time. Making pizza will eat it up quickly (true of any brand though) but it will definitely get you to the temperatures you want to be at. I do alot of direct grilling during the work week and each day I just pour in a little bit over what’s already there and relight. I can only get it thru amazon where I live, so if Im in a situation where I need charcoal right now, I settle for royal oak from a local store. 

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I have been travelling an hour and a half into Toronto to buy the Fogo Super Premium.  Love using it for low and slow.  IMHO the really huge chunks help control burn rate and it’s quite clean burning.

 

The really good news is that someone has just started advertising that they are selling it in a small town nearby!  That means a savings of 3-4 hours every time I decide to buy some more!

 

 

CD37E9C7-1896-4315-BD31-9AE4013A0F39.jpeg

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Jealous Devil for me. Free shipping from BBQGuys and it usually arrives within 3 or 4 days. 

 

I just don't need to let myself run out like I did a couple of weeks ago. I had to dip into my emergency stash of crappy lump for a few days. Yea it sucked. 

 

 

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2 hours ago, JeffieBoy said:

I have been travelling an hour and a half into Toronto to buy the Fogo Super Premium.  Love using it for low and slow.  IMHO the really huge chunks help control burn rate and it’s quite clean burning.

 

The really good news is that someone has just started advertising that they are selling it in a small town nearby!  That means a savings of 3-4 hours every time I decide to buy some more!

 

 

CD37E9C7-1896-4315-BD31-9AE4013A0F39.jpeg

Dickson’s bbq has free shipping on orders over $99, to save you the trip.  It, or barbecues galore are my go to stores.  https://dicksonbbq.com/

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2 hours ago, ckreef said:

Jealous Devil for me. Free shipping from BBQGuys and it usually arrives within 3 or 4 days. 

 

I just don't need to let myself run out like I did a couple of weeks ago. I had to dip into my emergency stash of crappy lump for a few days. Yea it sucked. 

 

 

I am going to buy some today and try it for a pizza cook tomorrow.  I typically use (and like) KJ Big Block.  I generally prefer any lump from Argentinian hardwoods.

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Royal Oak is a solid choice. It’s relatively cheap and readily available. I’ve had good experiences with KJ Big Block, which I’ve picked up at Costco road shows and ordered from Costco when they were running a deal (80lbs/$80) a few weeks ago. I have some Fogo that I bought when they were running a deal a few months ago, but I haven’t broken into that stash yet. 
 

in the end, it’s just carbon, so as long as there are no off flavors and it’s reasonably priced, you should be good to go!

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The best charcoal? Easy what ever the people you ask are using! Ck did a great review of charcoal. You'll have to decide what works best for you. I use RO for pizza but not for chicken (adds a Smokey flavor  my wife doesn't care for ) But we like it for pizza. Each brand will have it's plus and  minuses. Try different brands and keep note of what you think of them. As for worring about price its some thing that will go into your mouth, go for what tastes best for you.There will be bad bags once in a while no matter the brand.

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Chas 

I wasn't complaining about a stinky smell when doing the chicken my wife just doesn't like smoked chicken or turkey, i was just trying to state that different charcoal is going to have a different smoke flavoring on food, some stronger than others.  

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