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This impressive-looking compact barbecue is a great choice if you're looking to cook classic BBQ fare. Read our full review to find out more about how it performed
Style meets substance with this ceramic kamado-style BBQ, which not only looks good, but also offers great value and plenty of versatility when it comes to cooking – it’s capable of grilling, roasting, baking, smoking and even pizza-cooking.
Quick and easy to assemble, it’s straightforward to use too, although it’s hard to control the temperature of the grill and it gets very hot, and burned some food in our test. However, if you prefer the classic barbecue fare, i.e. more robust sausages and burgers to delicate ingredients like fish, this shouldn’t present too much of a problem. The size is ideal for a small family, as you can cook four burgers on the 22cm² grill at one time, but it’s heavy, so it’s not the obvious choice if you’re looking for a truly portable charcoal BBQ.
Read our review of the best charcoal barbecues
It’s impossible to talk about this Japanese-style of charcoal barbecue without swooning over the modern but classic design – it somehow creates a sense of anticipation about cooking on it. The materials are good quality, too, and once it’s on its stand, it feels solid and sturdy, which is impressive given that it’s reasonably priced in comparison to other kamodo-style brands. This model doesn’t come with a range of features, but includes a temperature gauge and thick, sturdy wooden handles.
Surprisingly, this barbecue doesn’t come with instructions, but assembly is intuitive and takes about an hour – mostly because the pieces are heavy and it’s worth taking things a bit slow so as not to break the ceramic elements. There’s quite a bit of packaging to dispose of, including polystyrene, but the cardboard box can be recycled.
This is a nice BBQ to use, because despite being relatively small, it feels substantial. It takes half a 3kg bag of charcoal and lights well, getting up to temperature in about 20 minutes. While there’s a temperature gauge embedded in the lid, we found it was hard to control the heat once we started cooking as the grill retains the heat. The hood is spring-loaded and closes with a nice firm action, but the handles, which should be heatproof, get quite hot, and the exterior feels warm during cooking, but not dangerously so. Designed to be a table-top BBQ, it doesn’t have wheels, and should be placed on a heat-proof surface.
While it distributes the heat relatively well, because it’s designed to retain it to reduce charcoal wastage, it gets so hot it can burn food, and there’s a cool spot around the top of the ceramic tiles. On test, the courgettes and halloumi kebabs cooked well with clear grill lines, but the potato slices burned before they cooked through, and the buns toasted, but unevenly.
It comes with a one-year warranty, which is disappointingly short, although the choice of ceramic and forged steel suggests it’s built to last. It also comes with a free cover, which will help extend its lifespan, and it’s been designed to retain heat so you use less charcoal.
This barbecue looks good and cooks basic barbecue food well. It comes with a pizza stone and cover, too, which makes it a good choice if budget and value are a consideration. It’s also a stylish focal point for family meals or gatherings with friends, which adds to its appeal, as does the chance to try your hand at smoking and even baking on this barbie.
Brand: Boss Grill
Model: The Egg XS
Dimensions: 62cm H, 55cm W, 54cm D. Weight 38kg. Cooking area 1122cm²
Materials: Ceramic body, with cast-iron charcoal grate, stainless-steel top vent and coated-steel base. Bamboo side shelves
Warranty: One year
Fuel needed: Charcoal (wood chips for smoking only)
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