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Dec 15, 2006 03:40 AM
Discussion

The Big Green Egg

I hear nothing but praise. Do you all agree?

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  1. I only know a couple of people who own one, and they really love it.

    1. I was considering buying one awhile back, but didn't want the hassle of having to tend it.

      I went with a Cookshack electric smoker instead (www.cookshack.com ) and couldn't be happier. You just put in a small amount of wood at the same time as your raw ingredients, close the door, and forget about it until it's done cooking. To be able to put a 13-lb brisket in the smoker and come back 17 hours later is worth it, to me anyway.

      One other thing, the electric smoker keeps the oven heat at exactly the temperature you set it at, throughout the cooking time.

      1 Reply
      1. Overweight and overpriced. The bigger models are tanks and require a dolly just to move 'em around, not to mention a dead-level deck sufficiently strong to support them.Somehow my old standby Weber models seem a better deal all round. If there's such a thing as "BBQ bling," the Big Green Egg is it.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Kagemusha

          2nd over weight and over priced. shipping is dear!

          1. re: Kagemusha

            If you want the best results you get the best

            1. re: Kagemusha

              ..along with the Primo. A friend has one and it is NICE.

            2. Wow, I'm glad I read this from Kagemusha. I was about to splurge as a Christmas treat to myself.

              Now I will reconsider.

              - Sean

              19 Replies
              1. re: Sean Dell

                If you wanted the BGE to do "low & slow" smoke cooking --real BBQ-- consider the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker, aka Weber Bullet. It does most of what is claimed for the BGE, at less cost and weight.

                1. re: Sean Dell

                  Sean Dell, I urge you to reconsider. Many BIG GREEN EGG owners have won national barbacue competitions with their egg. I totally disagree with Kagemusha. I own the largest BIG GREEN EGG, an XL and absolutely love it. It's really easy to fire it up and no lighter fluid or fire starter chemicals needed! Buy the lightweight Weber Chimney coal starter, fill it up with your natural lump charcoal, stuff two sheets of newspaper underneath and light...sooo easy and takes but a mere 15 minutes. The natural lump charcoal has no harsh chemicals and burns much more evenly than the toxic briquettes. The thick ceramic design is great for maintaining even temperatures over a long period of time in any climate. You can bake, roast, smoke, grill, etc, etc...what more can I say but that it's everything that people say it is and more. I own three other Weber Grills (a huge Genesis Silver with direct gas line, side burner, etc, a mini charcoal smokey joe for the beach, and a large weber charcoal fired kettle type). I haven't touched them since I bought my EGG except for my beach toter Weber. I use mine in tough Chicago Winters rain, snow, or shine, etc. Most any deck will be able to support the weight and the rack with wheels is great for easy mobility. Keep in mind that you never really need to move it anyway. I would buy the large or extra-large. The small is way to small and the medium is more limited when cooking for a lot of people.

                  I agree with the Weber WSM-smokey mountain recommendation...it's fantastic but it does a fraction of what the Big Green Egg can do and probably can't be used efficiently in harsh cold weather and snow.

                  1. re: amoncada

                    Thank you. This has been an interesting thread, with very strong pros, and some cons. It's back under consideration.

                    - Sean

                    1. re: amoncada

                      Amen. I've had about twenty BBQ grills of many differet types, including a couple of high end custom built ones, and none of them are as versatile as the egg. I have the great big GE and love it. With the addition of the baking stone, it does pizza as well as a wook-fired oven. It will cook steaks at 700-800 degrees for the right sear/crust. you can adjust the vents to get the temp to 200 derees and it will hold that temp fro 4 hours without adding wood orfiddling with the vents. A dedicated smokerr may do a marginally better job of low temp(175) slow smoking, but you can't use them in the winter or the rain, and you can't do any of the myriad other things the BGE will do well. They are expensive,but how many metal grils or smokers will last basically forever?

                      1. re: chazzerking

                        I have looked the Egg over and really dig the design, and I've been very interested in one - but man, a lot of the owners are wierd. I posted a question on the BGE forums on their website and instead of simply getting answers I got a huge quantity of "BUY IT NOW IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE THEN U CAN COME AND COOK WITH US!" I was directed to posts where people showed off their 5+ Eggs - yes, they have 5 or more, and lots of info on all these get-togethers where people put that huge 500 pound thing in their motor home, travel to some common location, and then set them up and sit in lawn chairs watching the smoke come out.

                        What is it about this stuff that turns some people into zombies? Reminded me of the Apple worshippers. IT'S NOT A LIFESTYLE, IT'S A FRIGGIN' GRILL.

                        H.

                        1. re: glashoppah

                          It's NOT a grill.

                          Get one and find out for yourself.

                          1. re: pabboy

                            Well that's wierd, because they use the term "grill" in the very title of their website:

                            http://www.biggreenegg.com/

                            and they repeatedly call it one. But what do they know, they're only the manufacturer.

                            G.

                            1. re: glashoppah

                              They use the phrase 'Smoker and grill' repeatedly on their homepage. Maybe the reason the posters on their forum are enthusiastic is because the Egg is a fantastic cooking device.

                              1. re: glashoppah

                                I guess the point is that it's not simply a grill. Surely this can't be that complicated.

                            2. re: glashoppah

                              my problem is that the users of the BGe and the other kamodas are so brand loyal/fanatical it's hard to get a real answer about the pros and cons of tehthevarious brands for comparison shopping

                              1. re: thew

                                that's certainly an issue that I've come up against. I believe some of the reasons for this are:

                                for one, most people only ever buy one, and therefore have no real frame of reference.

                                second, it's human nature to not want to admit the shortcomings or issues with something that you bought, especially when it's that expensive.

                                third, these things are quite versatile. If the people who are raving aren't using it for the same purposes you'd be using it (for me, i'd like a cooker for high-heat pizza cooking, and for smoking), then you really aren't getting any valuable information.

                                it's essentially impossible to get a good read on these items. however, if you do some googling you'll get a picture of which product has the most issues, and that one seems to be the pretty Kamado product: http://www.kamadofraudforum.org/index...

                                There seems be a reasonable sampling size on that forum, and I tend to believe the stories of their horrible customer service. This has taken them out of the running for me, as I've had enough problems with Thermador and Bosch customer service, which was just awful awful awful.

                                1. re: tommy

                                  Some objective input:

                                  We bought a BGE back in the spring. We ruled out the Kamado for the reasons you found. We also wanted something we could buy locally and not have shipped. We looked at both the BGE and the Prime which are both available here locally to us. We felt they were pretty interchangeable and went with the BGE because we were able to get a better price on it at the time(I don't think this is normally the case...but we got our large egg with all the accoutrement for a very competitive price). Had we found a better deal on the Prime we would have comfortably gone with that instead.

                                  I was skeptical about the whole thing to be honest but my husband really wanted one. I have to sayI"ve been eating crow a lot as I've been more than impressed with how it cooks and how easy it is to use and maintain temps on.

                                  The green glaze is already crazing on ours, This doesn't particularly bother me as it doesn't effect function. We don't have any internal cracks, though apparently it's not uncommon for them to develop internal issues over time - especially for the fire ring. The felt gasket is ready to be replaced already, again a typical issue. The hinge band needs to be retightened every couple months.

                                  Those have been the only real issues we've seen and none have been that big a deal with us. We like the lifetime warranty if we do have issues and the retailer we bought it from here locally has been very helpful whenever we've been in and takes care of warranty issues on the spot should anything develop.

                                  We use it mostly for pizza and have been thrilled with the results. We've done quite a bit of smoking on it and been really happy with that. We have a large gas grill also and have had many charcoal grills in the past and you can't really compare this type of cooker to those.

                                  My guess is all of these type cookers perform comparably and it's a matter of finding the one at a price that fits your budget from a company you're comfortable dealing with.

                                  Hope this helps

                                  1. re: ziggylu

                                    that's a pretty fair assessment, ziggy.

                                    what temp to you shoot for when making pizza, and what do you usually get to? i've read reports of people getting it to about 800 degrees, but I have to think that a lot of heat is going to escape once you lift the lid to slide the pizza in. so it's not really going to maintain temps like a brick oven would. i hope i'm wrong!

                                    i think the fact that you can buy the BGE locally really gives it an edge over the mail-order competition.

                                    1. re: tommy

                                      We usually use about 600 degrees for pizza. It's super easy to get to temp and maintain. We've had it as high as 700+ for steaks but we dont' cook those very often. We do pizza weekly however out on the egg. It was worth the investment just for pizza making! It does maintain the heat pretty well because of the ceramic. We usually get it up to temp and hold it there for about 45 minutes (with the stone in) before we slide the pizza in. I've made bread out there as well (at lower temp) with great results. We live in AZ so I actually loved being able to make my weekly loaf of bread outside during the summer and not heating up the kitchen.

                                      We've also done ribs and pork butts at low temp. We do the pork butts overnight and havne't had any issue at all holding a low temp for that, I forget exactly what temp my husband does. I want to say 225? Maybe lower? Havne't tried a brisket yet as we don't eat lots of beef but hoping to do one maybe at the end of the month when my sister is visiting from Chicago.

                                      Ive also had good results doing regular boneless legs of lambs and our Thanksgiving turkey where we've brought it up to high temp and preheated it for a while, put the meat in, let it cook a a short while and hten brought the temp down similarly to what I do in the oven. Really the temps are surprisingly easy to control.

                                      Like I said, I was really skeptical about the whole thing given the investment but I've been really impressed with the results. My family begs us to make things on it whenever they're here as well.

                                      I said "Prime" above but now that the morning coffee has hit the brain I realize the other brand we looked at closely was "Primo" They are also based in GA and are usually a little less expensive but when we were looking they seemed to be identical in quality and construction.

                                      If you have a BBQ Galore near you, we got a great deal on the Egg there.

                                      1. re: ziggylu

                                        good info, ziggy.

                                        another question! and I swear i looked for the answer but couldn't find it: how do you add wood to the thing after it's up and running? for example, if my wood chunks (and i'm assuming you can use chunks) are spent after an hour, and i want to add more, is it easy to reload?

                                        1. re: tommy

                                          We've never had to add wood. Even on an overnight cook. It's really efficient. And when you close it down it does a great job of not burning off what's left. Just seems to snuff it right out.

                                          If you did have to reload, you'd have to pull the grate off to do so(along with the plate setter if you were doing indirect) but like I said it's been a non-issue with us so far both at high temp and low temp.

                                          I agree the people on the BGE site are a bit fanatical but we do find that site and the naked whiz site useful the first time we're going to try something to get an idea of the technique. Particularly the Naked Whiz site, he does a great job of explaining how to build the fire for whatever it is you're planning to make.

                                        2. re: ziggylu

                                          ziggylu - I found this thread when I was searching for "buy big green egg los angeles." I don't think you're in LA, but we have a BBQ Galores around here. Do you mind my asking if I ask if there was a promotion or something to help you get your great deal? My boyfriend has been begging me to get a BGE for the last two years, ever since we first heard of it (we can't even remember now who told us about it), but we've moved around so much it just hasn't seemed practical. He got a great deal on ribs yesterday at Ralphs, though, so we've decided to make the leap and just get the egg!

                                          1. re: froggyhumi

                                            froggihumi
                                            I'm in Phoenix. I don't think it was a special promotion. The salesman said it was signed wrong and honored the price but the sign was the same the next couple times we went in so I don't if that's the case. I haven' tbeen in for a while but we are due for some charcoal so I'll take a look next time I go.

                        2. I have a Kamada, plain version of the Big Green Egg. Came from Japan in the 50s.

                          I like it, but agree with Kagemusha, a weber kettle produces the same results, and a weber kettle is more versatile.

                          I haven't had success using it to "grill" steaks, but it turns out beautiful roasts. I think, when people see "weber" and they think, been there, eaten that. When I serve them something out of the Kamada, they think what an interesting "BBQ", food tastes great.