Char-Griller Ambassador Steve Dotson of Cookout Coach have been using the Gravity 980 for a while now. Not only has he cooked on it at home, he's even been using it in competitions!
After using the Gravity 980 for a while, he wanted to write up an explanation of his experience using different types of charcoal in the hopper. Here's what he found out.
Today we’re going to tackle a question I’ve been getting a lot lately which is, in the new Char-Griller Gravity 980 cooker should I use lump charcoal or should I use charcoal briquettes?
That is a great question as your fuel choice can really affect your cook from preference things like aroma, to convenience of use things like how long with my fuel of choice run in my cooker and will it burn clean.
While we’ll talk about preference, that's usually my secondary deciding factor, so let's start with the more important questions of what fuel will keep my cooker running longer without me having to refuel.
The answer to this question is usually going to be briquettes, it's just a fundamental difference between briquettes and lump charcoal, however, if the lump will burn longer than any cook you would do it’s sort of a moot point.
In my testing I have ran the gravity 980 at 300 degrees for 10 hours on one hopper of lump charcoal so due to the insulated and efficient nature of these cookers both fuel sources will run for all the time you need for any cook.
Next if we talk about a clean burn, this one to me is going to come down to how long you give yourself to get ready to cook. In my testing the gravity 980 running lump charcoal will burn clean within 10 minutes of startup which is very impressive.
When I run charcoal briquettes I find that it takes the briquettes around 50 minutes to clear up, which for me is fine because I generally like to give all of my cookers an hour to come up to temperature and stabilize before putting food on them if I can.
So if you give yourself plenty of time for your cooker to come up to temperature, then we get in to the preference of the aroma of the fuels, which is fantastic.
Anytime a cooker allows you the flexibility to use what you want to and try new things that is a win. So I like to use lump in my Gravities because I’m usually smoking on them as opposed to grilling, however, if you’re cooking a lot of burgers or steaks on there you might want to throw in some briquettes to get some of that old school charcoal flavor on them.
Either way make sure to try some different fuels in your cookers and if you have a preference one way or the other let me know. Till next time, y’all take it easy.