Should I get a charcoal grill doubling as a smoker or a smoker doubling as a charcoal grill?

Discussion in 'Q&A With Steven Raichlen' started by mrorangecrocs, May 28, 2011.

  1. mrorangecrocs

    mrorangecrocs

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    Steve,

    I appreciate you taking the time to field questions this weekend. While I like my gas grill for weeknight convenience, I do miss my old Weber kettle charcoal grill. Unfortunately, it is no longer in usable condition (rust and dents). So, I plan to get something new, with an eye more towards long duration cooking like barbecuing and smoking. Should I look more towards buying a smoker that can double as a charcoal grill or should I go with a charcoal grill that can double as a smoker?

    Thanks for your advice. 
     
  2. bgirdler

    bgirdler

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    I have been having the same debate and am leaning towards the Weber 26.75" one touch gold as my do it all grill/smoker.
     
  3. indygal

    indygal

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    Same question here.  I'm not sure Steven is in a position to answer us, though.  Since he sells stuff, and is now looking for sponsors, a wrong answer could cause him to be.... limited.

    Donna
     
  4. lbartosh

    lbartosh

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    I have an offset firebox smoker.  It has a grate that sits over the firebox.  This arrangement gives me the ability to use it as a charcoal grill or as a smoker.  It is big, 4 foot in length or so.  But it does allow me to do both things if desired. 

    I will admit that I usually use one of two small barrel "smokers" as a charcoal grill most of the time.  Using the big smoker as a grill uses too much charcoal and really needs more food to cook than I usually am doing.
     
  5. maryb

    maryb

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    With a new Weber Kettle costing less than $100 you could buy a dedicated smoker and the grill. Another option would be the Weber Bullet smoker, you can grill on it but it isn't as convenient as the regular Weber.
     
  6. steven raichlen

    steven raichlen

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    I would also recommend the larger Weber kettle grill (26.5 inch) as it is modestly priced (compared to a high-quality offset smoker) and very versatile. It is large enough to comfortably smoke a turkey, beef brisket, or a large pork butt with ease. (Note to Donna: While Weber has been a sponsor in the past, I have always felt free to make independent grill recommendations based on a griller's needs. I own many types of grills myself--some are Webers--many are not.) If money is no object, Horizon smokers are very well-built. Their thicker gauge metal makes them great for winter grilling/smoking if you live in a seasonally-challenged climate.
     
  7. maryb

    maryb

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    If money is no problem go for a Klose. Having owned one I can say it was the easiest to cook on of any smoker I have owned. Only downside is tending fire every half hour when burning wood.
     
  8. steven raichlen

    steven raichlen

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    Have never owned a Klose smoker, but of course, the man is legendary. And tending the fire is part of the feeling of accomplishment, no?
     
  9. maryb

    maryb

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    The satisfaction of a clean burning all wood fire is great. Plus the sweet smell of oak in the morning made all the neighbors stop in /img/vbsmilies/smilies/smile.gif the Klose pits are the gold standard, tight fitting doors, even heat with the tuning plates, and the taste from an all wood burn can't be duplicated.
     
  10. mrorangecrocs

    mrorangecrocs

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    Thank you Steve and everyone for your inputs. I now have several options (which I like), and have to decide which one to implement. I will let you know. thanks again.