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Royal Oak Changed?

emillucaemilluca Posts: 673
edited 4:51PM in EggHead Forum
I have been having a terrible time keeping my large and mini egg up to temp. I have cooked with the bottom vent and top open all the way and get the egg to 450 place the plate setter in and I can't keep the large at 250 even with the air flow full open. Yes I have sorted the lump. Yes I have used a hanger to make sure the holes are clear.
I am going to blame the RO because it I use the same in both eggs.
I filled the large to the top of the lower firebox and just barley got an hour cook out of it doing chicken legs and a squash last night.


  • ZippylipZippylip Posts: 4,679
    could be quality control issues with the lump production, did you see the post yesterday where a 14oz chunk of concrete was pulled from a bag of RO? If not, scroll down - Nasty
    happy in the hut
    West Chester Pennsylvania
  • bobbybbobbyb Posts: 1,349
    sounds like you need to remove the fire rind and box and remove the ash buildup.
  • emillucaemilluca Posts: 673
    Forgot a Yes I have done that. It was the first thing I did. I just wonder if RO is producing for WalMart a substandard product. WalMart can cause producers to cut corners to keep the profit up.
  • emillucaemilluca Posts: 673
    No missed that post. I have been offline for at least a month been busy doing another task. Hope to get time to stay active on the board now.
  • ZippylipZippylip Posts: 4,679
    check it out, is is on page 2 now. Regarding the Walmart question, you could be right, that is what they are known for. I get all my RO at Walmart, picked up the last 10 bags I have now at the end of the summer, so far so good, I'll have to compare it to what I get when they bring in their first shipment in the spring. I just opened a bag of Cowboy lump I got at HD, it really sucks, I don't think there was a piece of lump in there bigger than a silver dollar
    happy in the hut
    West Chester Pennsylvania
  • CrimsongatorCrimsongator Posts: 5,795
    Did the fire go out or did the lump completely burn up?
  • DryFlyDryFly Posts: 351
    Try another brand! See what happens.
  • sure it is r/o american they also market lump from 3 different south american countries.
  • I believe you're on to something. When I cooked 4 butts for the Coop Party I had to re-load lump twice to finish it off for about a 20-hour cook. Each time I had to take everything apart to refill. And each time I noticed there was nothing left but a small amount of ash in the firepit. So I not only had to reload but restart as well.

    I was using my BBQ Guru and it still burned up fast. Apparently burned hot as well because my pizza stone that I was using in my setup was as white as a new one in spite of the dome temperature never rising above 275°.

    Then there was the matter of intense acrid smoke. More than I have ever encountered. I just knew that the bad smoke was going to ruin my butts but it didn't.

    I went up to Walmart yesterday to see if they received any more shipments since Ike but they're still out. I was just going to try one bag and if it was okay I would go back and get more. Instead, it appears that I will be using Kroger's brand for awhile. It's not bad.

    One thing's for sure... I'm not loading up on RO until the smoke clears (pun intended).

    Spring "The White Stuff On Chicken Stuff Is Chicken Stuff Too" Chicken
    Spring Texas USA
  • GunnarGunnar Posts: 2,305
    Déjà vu….I recently restocked with 8 bags of RO (American). Even though I haven’t filled the lump to the top of the fire box; a 350 degree cook and I start loosing temp in 1 ½ hours. I was thinking it was my fault for not building a big enough fire, but after all of these recent posts I’m thinking otherwise.
    LBGE      Katy (Houston) TX
  • Maybe they used balsa wood and just painted it black.

    Spring "Color Me Suspicious" Chicken
  • I ran across this site where one guy is saying that Publix and Kroger's lump is made by Royal Oak.

    Don't know if it's true though.

    I wish the lump makers would get together on a universal grading system for their products. It would certainly have to be more advanced that "acceptable" and "unacceptable."

    Spring "Can't Leave Bad Enough Alone" Chicken
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    ...isn't Kroger Lump simply private-labeled Royal Oak?
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • Must be.

    Spring "Private Stock" Chicken
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    i can't imagine they'd volunteer to take part in something with the risk of being labeled sub-par.

    anyway, i'd bet the number of people that debate the virtues of one brand versus another are a small (though admittedly hard-core) segment of their consumer base.

    but if someone (royal oak?) opened their eyes, they'd see an opportunity to market their stuff as low-sparking, etc. directly to the self-perceived gourmets out there. that is, IF THEY COULD JUST PRODUCE CONSISTENT LOW-SPARK stuff. garrr!

    (theme song'd be "low-spark of royal oak", to the tune of "Low Spark of High Heeled Boys...")
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • emillucaemilluca Posts: 673
    Completly burned up.
  • emillucaemilluca Posts: 673
    Yes, definite is American I always check.
  • emillucaemilluca Posts: 673
    I believe they would. WalMart drives companies hard to get the most margin for WalMart not the company. Wasn't the bad toothpaste made in China for WalMart sales?
    I am not having sparking or other issues. I am just stuck with 10 bags of lump that is only good for an hour cook. Of well I guess I can try another brand for a long cook. I was hoping to do 50 lbs of Butts but won't now. I don't have a Stocker or Digi and certainly don't have the time to babysit it.

  • i have been pulling nice sized rocks out of the last few bags of BGE lump likewise...

    anybody else?
  • jeffinsgfjeffinsgf Posts: 1,259
    In the mid-70's my family owned a charcoal kiln and a briquetting operation in Southern Missouri. We bagged both lump and briquettes for Royal Oak, Kingsford and many, many others. Unless things have changed dramatically in the industry, neither Royal Oak nor Kingsford produce anything. They just contract out.

    Royal Oak at that time constantly pushed us to cut our price and cared little what we put in the bags. Kingsford was mostly a briquette customer. They wanted a quality briquette, with little filler and the minimum amount of cornstarch binder. Which worked out well, since Dad refused to put crap in the briquettes.

    When a kiln is sealed for a burn, the door frame is packed with insulation and clay. When you find insulation and "rocks" in your bag, it usually indicates that a sloppy operator didn't clean up the seal area before he started unloading the kiln. The rocks are sometimes real rocks, but if you find a sort of soft, crumbly rock, it's clay that has been fired by the burn. You shouldn't have it in the bag, but the explanation is sloppiness, not an intent to heavy up your bag with rocks.

    My guess is the RO has found somebody that is using poplar, sycamore, aspen or some other light density hardwood. It's still "hardwood" charcoal, but has no body to it. We hauled off sawmill slabs from the pallet and stave mills and bought cordwood from independent cutters, as well as having a crew that worked our property. We never knowingly put anything but oak and hickory in a kiln, but there was always pressure from the customers to push the price down and kick the production up.

    I think that's why Ozark Oak is so well thought of here. I know those guys bag for others, but the best of the best goes in their own branded bags.

    If you've never been around a charcoal kiln, you really should seek one out sometime when it is firing. It is a truly unique aroma, not altogether pleasant, but not totally repulsive, either. Sort of like the acrid smoke at the beginning of a fire, but on steroids. There's always a bit of high drama when a kiln is cracked open. 70% of the time a raging fire starts as soon as the oxygen hits the charcoal. So you're driving a front end loader into a fully involved fire, spreading the coals out on a concrete pad and hosing it down as fast as you can go.
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,876
    i can only think of three things that would do that. ash buildup behind the firebox, lump is very damp, the inside of the egg is wet. my egg in maine is hard to get going in the spring during the mud season
  • Thanks for sharing that bit of information.

    Spring "Knowing Is Better Than Not Knowing" Chicken
  • GunnarGunnar Posts: 2,305
    Most of the grocery store brands I see locally are mesquite hardwood. I believe mesquite is supposed to be a hotter burning wood. I’m not sure if I want that flavor on an average cook; or does it impart much flavor. Suggestions welcomed…..
    LBGE      Katy (Houston) TX
  • jeffinsgfjeffinsgf Posts: 1,259
    Mesquite charcoal, if properly created (complete burn), should impart only a very mild mesquite aroma. I have used it successfully, but prefer oak/hickory.
  • EggZonaEggZona Posts: 108
    I use 50% mesquite in just about everything I cook. Doesn't add to much in my opinion either. Burns hot!

    I am confused though....I use primarly BGE lump. Is it not available to others or just that fact that RO is cheaper.
  • GunnarGunnar Posts: 2,305
    BGE (which is made by RO) is about double $22 for a 20 lb bag while a 10 lb bag of RO is $5.27 at Wal-Mart.
    LBGE      Katy (Houston) TX
  • jeffinsgfjeffinsgf Posts: 1,259
    BGE lump is relatively expensive in most parts of the country, mostly due to transportation costs. In my opinion it has pretty consistent quality, but not outstanding, certainly not worth double other brands. That's the price differential here -- BGE $20 for 20 pounds at Outdoor Home, Best Choice or Ozark Oak is routinely $5 for 10 pounds around here. BC was on sale for $4 this week.

    When you say 50/50 are you saying 50/50 BGE lump with mesquite chunks or with mesquite charcoal? I used to be in Texas on business a couple times a year and always brought home a couple bags of mesquite chunks. They're kinda high here.
  • thought you guys would be interested in this link...

    it's all mesquite but 40# bags for $12 & 20# bags for $7.5...

    i will let you know what shipping does to it; just ordered 3 40#r's
  • GunnarGunnar Posts: 2,305
    Could that be why I don't need to use fire starters?
    LBGE      Katy (Houston) TX
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    cooking over mesquite isn't the same as smoking with mesquite, so if you are worried about the food getting oversmoked with it, i wouldn't worry. after the wood (any wood) is carbonized, there's very little left of what creates the flavors of different wood smoke. it might be mesquite, but it won't taste like you smoked the whole time with mesquite. knowutta mean?
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
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