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Portable Charcoal Grill

Azzuro Andrea Dec 1, 2009 12:53 PM

Hi Guys, what would you recommend is a good portable charcoal grill? Something that's good quality, not bothered about price just good for camping and going away?

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  1. r
    ricepad RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 2, 2009 11:00 AM

    I have a Weber Smokey Joe Gold (the difference between the Gold and the Silver is a bail that flips up to secure the lid to the bowl, otherwise they're the same), and I use it when I want to grill a few items. It's too small for smoking anything, but if I'm just doing a few dogs or burgers or veggies, it's perfect.

    4 Replies
    1. re: ricepad
      Azzuro Andrea RE: ricepad Dec 3, 2009 01:55 PM

      The smokey does look interesting. It looks quite big though, I was thinking of something a bit more old school or traditional where it's basically just good for coals and a grill, no need for a lid or anything fancy although I suppose you can leave the lid at home and keep for home use anyway. Leaves room for thought..

      Nice 1

      1. re: Azzuro Andrea
        ferret RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 3, 2009 02:50 PM

        This one folds to 1" thick; you won't do much better than that:


        1. re: Azzuro Andrea
          deeznuts RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 16, 2009 10:41 PM

          The smokey joe is not really that big. And trust me, you'll want quality even when camping. I've had to use crappy charcoal grills on the go, and they suck. I'm a charcoal snob, and own 5 grills (albeit one is a gasser). All but one a weber.

          get a smokey joe, and if it's one without the holes on the bottom, put some in. Air circulation is so important when grilling. Anything that does not allow air to flow through the coals IMO is not worth the time.

        2. re: ricepad
          MikeB3542 RE: ricepad Dec 6, 2009 09:11 PM

          I think for a truly portable unit, the Weber Go Anywhere grill gets a nod from me over the Smokey Joe -- the folding legs and rectangular shape make it easier to pack up. The Joe is lugable but just not ideal -- it prefers to stay put on the apartment or condo balcony.

          The Son of Hibachi design looks intriguing. Anyone use one?

        3. Uncle Bob RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 3, 2009 02:36 PM


          Note the weight....Might be a little heavy if your're backpacking the Appalachian Trail......

          1 Reply
          1. re: Uncle Bob
            yakitat jack RE: Uncle Bob Dec 3, 2009 08:07 PM

            Yes I would go with the Lodge Sportsman's Grill. Its like an old hibachi, you can control the heat and add charcoal without removing the grill. Weighs 32 lbs. because its all cast iron. Go to SPORTSMAN'S GUIDE a deal at $ 89.97. Go thur Lodge its $ 135.00. Mine is about 30 years old and going great.

          2. l
            Leo Slater RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 4, 2009 04:22 AM

            I'd recommend the Bon Feu! you can pick them up on Amazon or from Spain. I bought mine direct from Spain from their website. Very well made grill, only thing I didn't like was that the coals are quite close to the food which means you need to wait for the coals to burn to around 70% or put fewer in but for travel and quick and easy it's perfect. http://www.bonfeu-bbq.com/portable-ch... or www.amazon.com
            Hope this helps

            2 Replies
            1. re: Leo Slater
              Azzuro Andrea RE: Leo Slater Dec 4, 2009 10:06 AM

              The sportsman's grill looks good and the bonfeu looks interesting. Nice 1 thanks

              1. re: Leo Slater
                Azzuro Andrea RE: Leo Slater Dec 16, 2009 10:41 AM

                we ended up going for the bonfeu and it arrived today! we're looking forward to giving it a burn after Christmas. thanks for the help.

              2. m
                mattrapp RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 4, 2009 12:01 PM

                Check out a BIg Green Egg Mini. Extremely versatile, uses very little charcoal and you have extreme control over the temps. Plus a lifetime warranty.

                1 Reply
                1. re: mattrapp
                  Joe Blowe RE: mattrapp Dec 4, 2009 03:04 PM

                  The Mini weighs 30 lbs. and costs nearly $300. Not exactly portable or cheap, but can't dispute the quality...

                2. s
                  studentofbbq RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 6, 2009 08:15 PM

                  The Cobb is a brilliant small charcoal bbq- grill, smoke or wok. I just added it to the Weber collection (3) and it is excellent.

                  1. Robin Joy RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 7, 2009 12:09 AM

                    If there's any way you would look at gas, these are great, and will run off a big bottle at home or a small cannister in the wilds. Very well made.


                    1. paulj RE: Azzuro Andrea Dec 7, 2009 07:43 AM

                      Is there already some sort of grill or fire pit at the campground(s)? That's typical of established campgrounds in the US and Canada. It may be a steel box on a pedestal, or a steel ring on the ground with a grating of some sort, or just a ring of rocks.

                      Camping stores sell steel grates than can be set on rocks over the fire (wood or charcoal). Bigger stores like Cabelas sell fancier grates that pivot about a post, and adjust in height.

                      I've seen variations on the small Weber (with base, grating and lid); some are more rectangular, with folding legs. But all of these are bulky.

                      I've also seen folding ones. A search for 'notebook grill' might turn up some options like this. I have a great folding one, a Pyromid, that stores in a 18 x 18" envelope. Unfortunately it is no longer made, though information can still be found on the web.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: paulj
                        paulj RE: paulj Dec 8, 2009 01:24 PM

                        Here's a place that carries the 'notebook grill'
                        and 4x4 forum thread on the same

                        1. re: paulj
                          chozamama RE: paulj May 6, 2010 11:29 AM

                          I totally agree with the recommendation for the Folding "Notebook" grill! It's so easy to pack up and take with you...and it grills a great burger or steak (or whatever you want). I think the "Notebook Grill" is now discontinued, but I found a better alternative in the Picnic Time X-Grill. It's the same concept but a bit better quality I believe. I found mine here: http://www.nationaltailgate.com/store...

                          1. re: chozamama
                            paulj RE: chozamama May 6, 2010 11:41 AM

                            I looked at something like this at Korean megamart. The (black) body parts were a thiner steel than I expected, but as long as the paint is durable that may ok. Lining with foil before use will make clean up much easier, and may improve durability. You may need to punch vent holes in the foil.

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