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Primo 774 Ceramic Charcoal Smoker Grill, Oval Junior
|You Save:||$70.00 (8%)|
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- Unique oval design for more flexible and versatile grilling and smoking
- 210 square inches of standard cooking surface; up to 360 square inches with rack extensions
- Exterior features a premium-grade ceramic blend coated with a protective, lead-free, scratch-resistant porcelain glaze
- Highest quality ceramic for increased efficiency and durability
- Measures 24 by 22 by 16 inches; 20-year warranty for all ceramic parts; made in USA
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|Item Dimensions||24.5 x 21 x 21.5 inches|
|Manufacturer Part Number||B000W0O07C|
|Shipping Weight||117 pounds|
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This item Primo 774 Ceramic Charcoal Smoker Grill, Oval Junior
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|Item Dimensions||21 x 21.5 x 24.5 in||28.7 x 24.8 x 21.6 in||21 x 28 x 27.5 in||24 x 26 x 38 in|
The Primo Oval Junior Smoker Charcoal Grill is a Medium-Large Size model with all the benefits of the original Oval ceramic benefits. Standard Grill Features: Cast-Iron Chimney Vent, Precision Thermometer, Easy Lift & Lock Hinge System, Soft-Close Felt Gasket, Quick-Clean Porcelain Cooking Grid, User Manual/ Recipe Book Grill Dimensions in inches (H by W by D): 24 by 22 by 16 - Cooking Surface: 210 Square Inches (with Rack Extensions: up to 360 Square Inches)
The Primo Oval Junior charcoal smoker grill is the ultimate outdoor ceramic cooker, featuring 210 square inches of standard cooking surface (and up to 360 square inches with optional rack extensions). It also offers a cast iron chimney cap, easy-to-read thermometer, reversible cooking grates, stainless steel lower vent door. And Primo's unique oval design allows for greater flexibility and versatility. You'll be able to cook using both direct and indirect methods at the same time.
With a Primo grill, you'll be able to:
- Cook a wide variety of foods, including steaks, chicken, pork, turkey, fish, pizzas, vegetables... you name it!
- Grill and/or smoke while maintaining a consistent low temperature or high temperature
- Evenly heat across the entire surface of the grill
The Primo Oval Junior measures 24 by 22 by 16 inches (HxWxD). The only ceramic grill manufactured in the USA and constructed to the highest specifications, Primo grills are backed with a 20-year warranty on the ceramic portion and 5 years for its metal parts.
Durable Handcrafted Ceramics
Primo's handcrafted ceramics are designed to provide the upmost strength while providing superior temperature control and maximum moisture retention. By curing the finish at temperatures exceeding 2400-degree F, the glaze is permanently bonded to the ceramic body for long lasting durability.
The exclusive ceramic formula delivers consistent temperature control. From its smallest to its biggest grills, Primo can provide smoke temperatures as low as 95 degrees F or exceed searing temperatures of 750 degrees F.
Primo's bands and stands feature a baked-on, powder-coated, high-gloss finish for durability and easy maintenance. The commercial grade porcelain is applied to the grilling racks here in the USA and are crafted for a lifetime of use.
Maximum Cooking Versatility for the Outdoor Chef
Many restaurants use the intensity of direct grilling to seal in the juices to foods, then finish the cooking process over soft true indirect or convection grilling style.
Similarly, with Primo's two-zone design, you're not limited to just one cooking style. Using the divider plate, you can cook a steak with direct heat on one side and chicken with indirect heat on the other side. You'll be able prepare the perfect meal, whether via direct cooking, true indirect, convection, baking, direct and true indirect, convection and true indirect, baking and direct, backing and convection, and so on.
Primo's two-zone design provides maximum cooking versatility to get the same big-name restaurant result at home, and at a fraction of the cost.
Optimized Grilling Surface
With Primo's exclusive flush rack design, a backyard chef is able to maximize the use of the Oval's grilling surface. Reversible grilling racks allows for food to be grilled a different intensities.
Natural Lump Charcoal
Primo recommends using its Primo brand Natural Lump Charcoal for best results. Burning cleaner, hotter, and longer, natural lump charcoal produces less ash than briquette style charcoal. It's also quick and easy to light--unlike charcoal briquettes that require patience--and is a renewable fuel source. Other natural lump charcoals are also fine to use in your Primo.
What's in the Box
Primo 774 Oval Junior grill; cast-iron chimney vent; precision thermometer; easy lift and lock hinge system; soft-close felt gasket; quick-clean porcelain cooking grid; user manual; recipe book
Top Customer Reviews
1. Ability to maintain a wide range of temperatures, allowing low/slow smoking at 210 degrees to high temperature searing at 700+ degrees.
2. Efficient use of charcoal and wood, using less fuel than similarly sized traditional grills also allowing for longer cooks without having to add additional coals.
3. Heavy sides insulate and capture heat, allowing for stable temperatures and protecting from exterior winds and cold to keep consistent heat.
4. Contain moisture, which is great for keeping your meats tender and juicy.
There are downsides to ceramic grills too:
1. They are heavy and thus harder to move around
2. Being ceramic, they are fragile. From the forums, a large % break in shipping so its good to get one that is backed by a good manufacturer. The top ones, including Primo are known to stick behind their products.
3. They are expensive compared to traditional grills for the same cook area.
There are three things that differentiate the Primo in my mind (getting tired of lists yet? :) )
1. They are oval, which is very handy for cooking long things like a brisket, as well as cooking two different types of food on each side of the grill, including doing indirect cooking on one side and direct on the other.)
2. They have more accessories than many of the other manufacturers, including additional levels of racks, the indirect heating 'plates', etc. Just more ways to get better utility out of your grill.
3. They are made in the USA, which is nice both to support local manufacturing but also because I'm more and more skeptical about letting anything made in China touch my food these days.
Okay. That's enough lists for a bit. This review is specifically about the Primo Jr. I spent a good bit of time deciding between the JR and XL. The difference in cooking area is significant with the XL having 2x as much cooking area. That said, I can cook two full sized briskets on a JR, and can easily feed six people. In addition, I have a Masterbuilt electric smoker and you can find my review for that on Amazon at well (a great great tool for the price), so if I want to mix smoking and grilling can always just use the JR to grill while smoking on the Masterbuilt to extend my capacity. If you really want to cook for a crowd you're going to want to look at the XL. Otherwise I presume the review will match well.
Let me summarize the rest of this review thusly: This grill is awesome. Its easy to get the grill to the temperature you want and maintain it. At high temps you can sear and cook steaks in minutes. At medium temperatures you can do poultry and vegetables that are delicious and infused with that flavor you only get from real wood lump charcoal, while staying moist and tender. At low temps you've got a smoker that can keep up with pros for making bbq and will meet all your needs. Wow.
The fact is, all kamado style grills are going to have very similar properties, so it really comes down to the details. I very much like the oval shape of the Primo. It gives me a bit more flexibility. Will I need the oval shape every cook? No. But when I want to cook two different foods at the same time perhaps with racks at different heights or one indirect, I can. Or if I want to do a big brisket which would be awkward on a similarly sized circular kamado, I have no problem. If you're getting a kamado you're spending a premium of $$$ already. I don't want to spend that premium and then have to compromise on utility.
The big way the Masterbuilt spoiled me is the simple way you can add additional wood in the middle of a cook. This is the only real way I can mark the Primo down. If you're doing a 12 hour smoke and your lump has burnt down, you have a bit of a bother adding more wood. You're going to have this with a lot of grills, not just Primos. The mitigating factor is that fuel efficiency I mentioned that you get from ceramic grills. If you're cooking at low temperatures a single load of charcoal should easily take you 10+ hours. And after a cook, all you have to do is close the vents and any remaining lump can sit for your next cook.
Everything else is just practice, and gaskets can wear over time particularly if you do high temp cooks and don't take care of flares when opening the grill. But the gaskets are easy and cheap enough to replace.
Overall, if you're waffling like I was you're going to love it once you try one of these. You can't really go wrong with any of the kamado style grills. I think the next generation of grill to compete with them is the Big Steel Keg category grill which is an insulated steel variant of the kamado, which has many of the same benefits while being significantly lighter and more durable allowing them to be transported. One of those will likely be my next toy, particularly when they come down a couple hundred. For now though, if you want a ceramic style grill for your backyard you really can't do better than a Primo. The oval shape is unique and gives some clear advantages in many situations, their various accessories give even more flexibility and like I said, they are made in the USA without being any more expensive than their circular competitors.
The only downside I can say about any of these ceramic grills is the real premium you have to pay in $$$ over traditional lump grills, but I can't mark the Primo down a star for that as they aren't any more expensive than any of their competitors. In the end, I have to say its certainly worth what I paid and that's the final measure.
A hearty 5 star, for a grill and smoker that can be a great tool for a serious cook and make it easy for a newbie to prepare delicious food that'll impress family and friends.
When I first got the Primo I set it up on a stand in the place it will go once I complete the outdoor cooking station I'm building. I was quite surprised to find that with the lid open a slight push on the lid would cause the Primo to start tipping over backward. I thought perhaps the hinge mechanism required some adjustment to prevent the lid from going going back too far, and promptly called the manufacturer. The woman I spoke to didn't seem too anxious to help, but suggested I take a picture of the Primo and e-mail it to their warranty department. I did so, and received a form response saying I would hear from them shortly. That was more than a month ago, and I have yet to get anything.
However, the Primo is set next to a wall (or I should say 10" from a wall, which is the minimum clearance), and I was able to use some 2 x 4s to build a simple wedge structure that supports the Primo just under the lip on either side of the hinge. This solved the tipping problem. Nevertheless, this is a seriouds issue. I imagine the tipping is avoided if the optional stand or table is purchased, but the manufacturer needs to alert purchasers to this potential problem.
That being said, let me say that all the good things people say about the Primo, and kamados in general, are absolutely true. I've done over a dozen cooks, and the result in each case was great.
Unless you are a very experienced cook I would strongly recommend that you purchase a digital food thermometer such as the Maverick ET732. Mine works great, and in my opinion it's essential to getting quality results.
Also, unless you intend to limit yourself to steaks and hamburgers (and if so you shouldn't be spending the money for a kamado) you'll need to get the D plates and their supports to do indirect cooking.
As you might expect, there's a bit of a learning curve in using the top and bottom vents, but it's not steep. Just remember that it's a lot easier to raise the temperature than it is to cool it down.
The oval shape of the Primo gives it an advantage over round kamados, not only because food items are often oval-shaped (e.g., a turkey), but because you can use just one half of the Primo if you're cooking only a couple of steaks or burgers (you'll want to get the optional divider for this). I think the Junior is the perfect size for a small family. If you plan to do a lot of entertaining then you should opt for the XL if you have the space.
One special note. I got the pizza stone just as an afterthought, and didn't get around to doing a pizza until a few days ago. My wife and I both agreed it was as good as we've ever had in any restaurant. Plus, you can use top-quality ingredients, and the recipes online are endless. So definitely invest in the pizza stone.
Lastly, something needs to be said about the aesthetics of the Primo. It's shape and texture are a strong contrast to the cheap pressed metal of your classic BBQ. While it might not rise to the level of an objet d'art, it is nevertheless quite easy on the eye.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
use temp probe