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first smoker purchase

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Hi im new here.  Ive BBQ'd all my life and have a Gozney pizza oven and a whistler Grill.  I want to get into smoking but not sure what to buy.. 

Been looking around at Weber Smokey Mountain and Pro Q bullets.  Thought about a Komado type and then offset.. 

Any recomendations  for a beginner? I really like the idea of adding some air controls so I can monitor temps on long cooks remotly

Many thanks rog

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Posted (edited)

Welcome roger!

I used to have an offset (called 'el cheapo'...because it was a cheap no brand one), which I scrapped a few years ago. I currently own a kamado as my only grill so I can offer a little insight into these 2 types.

The biggest comittment to an offset is your time. It will need monitoring and refueling regularly, tinkering with vent settings ever so slightly (not stressful, quite relaxing actually, but doing other things can be a distraction). Its quite an involved process. This can be challenging yet very rewarding with a potentially great deal of satisfaction from the results.

A kamado (ceramic ones) only needs monitoring at the start. Generally once the food goes in for a slow cook then you can leave it alone for a while with virtually no monitoring or refueling, allowing you to do other things worry free. This is great for overnight cooks....once you have learnt temp control of course😉.

The biggest con to kamado's is the price to cooking area ratio. However they are very versatile when it comes to cooking a wide range of different cooking styles. They are also great if you want just one grill.

I absolutely love mine and use it year round and I expect it to last for many more years. Fuel efficency is fantastic and will save me alot of money over time.

I gave it a good clean back in January ready for this year and this is a picture i took once I was done (It will be 4 years old this July).


However the initial investment is high and the price-to-cooking area being terrible makes them difficult to recommend over other types. With you having other grills it should make a kamado even less appealing.

My reason for swapping to a kamado was so I could cook all year round, a grill to cook everything and get more cooks in while I can do other jobs round the house (or nip out shopping while its cooking away).

Hopefully this helps and Im sure others will give their opinions aswell.👍🍻

Edited by AdamG
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I'll second a WSM or other bullet smoker as a great starter and easy to learn, very forgiving. Though you may find a standard kettle may be more your speed as can do low and slow as well as searing but you could use the gozney for that maillard reaction. 

I think a big factor is what is your budget? What space do you have? How many people do you cook for? and How hands on/off do you want to be?

I think almost all BBQs can be modded in some way to use a controller, though an offset would require a change in fuel from wood only/mostly to more charcoal with wood for flavour. But you can certainly add a wired/wireless probe to every BBQ to monitor food and smoker temps. 

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