Char-Griller AKORN Jr. Kamado Charcoal Grill Review
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Having its roots in ancient Japan, the Kamado Charcoal grill is still very popular today after its invention 3,000 years ago. The distinct qualities of a Kamado charcoal grill are its design and capacity to cook plenty with minimal charcoal fuel. Today several Kamado charcoal grills abound on the market, with Char-Griller Arkon Jr. being among the front runners.
Our review of the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill explores its features, performance, complaints, and other essential information – largely because it’s one of the best value for money grills you can find.
Why Consider the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill?
If you’re a fan of charcoal grills, it’s simply one of the best. While lacking fun parts of some high-end expensive charcoal grills, it does pack enough punch to compete favorably. The Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill is designed to maximize cooking efficiency.
It has all the necessities to save you the frustration that comes with less capable models. You can prepare a sizeable meal for each family member all at the same time. And you can cook at varying temperatures to get the best flavor out of any dish. Plus, all this comes at a relatively low price.
Who Should Buy the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill?
- Grill Fans Who Prefer The Smoked Flavor of Charcoal: There are millions, or at least hundreds of thousands of articles and testimonials to the superior flavor of charcoal-grilled food over boiled or fried food. Great flavor is what makes charcoal grills popular despite some of its permanent drawbacks. If you eat grilled food a lot, you probably know better than what anyone can say about its flavor. If you don’t eat charcoal-grilled food there’s a massive chance you’re missing a lot.
- Outdoor-Life Fanatics: Some people would rather die than give up camping or throwing barbecue parties. Surprisingly, not every outdoor-life enthusiast takes a grill to camp, or worse still, even has one. If you camp a lot or live a similar lifestyle, consider having a portable and convenient grill such as the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill.
- Grill Fans on a Budget: When considering its cost, the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill is a rare steal, especially for those who spent a fortune on a grill that does not perform any better. The combination of quality and low price is a chance no consumer would pass up willingly even if they’re low on funds.
Possible Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill Complaints
- Does Not Have Wheeled Legs: That makes it a little less convenient for moving around when hot. But you can still carry it easily using the two well-protected handles. Only you wouldn’t love to carry it over a long distance, and the risks of sustaining burn injury are significantly higher than with wheeled grills.
- Lacks One-Touch Cleaning System: There is no one-touch cleaning system that wipes ash collected on the surface of the bowl to the bottom. You will have to knock loose ash that collects on the grill walls. Although this isn’t a biggie as you could simply clean it within seconds.
Company Headquarters: Atlanta, Georgia
Char-Griller was founded decades ago by a Georgia brother and sister – that’s what the company says about itself. The company takes pride in producing quality yet cheap grills for hardworking families. They believe every household should be able to afford a grill and not miss out on grilled foods. They also produce other appliances like kettles, Dual Fuel Grillers, Smokers, Kamados, and more.
First Impression: What Does It Look Like?
The Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill is a Kamado-design charcoal grill with excellent heat retention and even heat distribution features. The perfect bowl shape and three-wall polished interior serve to maximize the heat reaching your food. Two side-handles helps you move the grill with ease. There are a hinge and latch that keeps the hood in place and helps close the grill tightly. This charcoal grill can take more than 3 lbs. of charcoal (about 50 – 60 briquettes) though 3 lbs is the recommended limit.
This grill is made of steel and cast iron and in accordance with the highest international standard. But it’s still vulnerable to rust if exposed to the causative elements, despite having a smooth power finish over a porcelain coating. It brings the best flavor out of your food, and you could also add water-soaked hardwood chips to produce a smoked flavor.
- Kamado-Style Grilling: Cooks a variety of foods at different temperatures. Some foods require intense heat to cook properly, on time, or taste best. Others cook and taste best on less intense heat. The design of this grill lets you cook each type of food according to the best heat level from 200 – 700 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Easy Temperature Control: The Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill provides a way to manage and monitor the cooking temperature. You could open or close the top damper leaving the bottom damper open to regulate heat level. You could also add charcoal fuel while grilling to build more heat.
- Temperature Monitoring: The charcoal grill has a heat gauge that gives you an approximate value of the temperature. It is accurate to +/-10% the actual temperature of the grill. You will have to use a wired digital thermometer to get the exact temperature of the grill at any point.
- Adjustable Top Damper: The adjustable top damper is also a key feature of this charcoal grill that makes it an efficient machine. Without a way to reduce or increase heat, you are likely to burn, delay, or undercook your food. Some charcoal grills have top and bottom dampers you can’t adjust, and that gives you less control over heat level.
- Even Heating: For the best flavor, a grill needs to heat evenly. Even heating is necessary for simultaneous and efficient cooking. Whether or not a charcoal grill heats evenly largely depends on the design. The Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill also has a Kamado-style design. That means, besides even heating; it can generate intense heat (up to 700 degrees Fahrenheit) for searing.
- Ergonomic Design: Not only is the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill made of high-quality material, but it also features an ergonomic design that maximizes cooking space. Weighing just 27 pounds, this charcoal grill offers a generous cooking space of up to 153 sq. inch cooking area of cast iron grates. You can cook enough meals for several people at the same time. Another exceptional part of its design is that it is light.
- Great Heat Retention: The Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill isn’t as heavy as ceramic grills of comparable size, but it does rival a ceramic in heat retention. The heat retention feature allows this charcoal grill to cook plenty using a small quantity of charcoal.
- Detailed Manual: The detailed manual of this grill is like no other you’ll find. Not only does it provide simple step-by-step instructions on assembly, but it also educates you thoroughly on the safe use of charcoal grills. It teaches you how to prepare different kinds of food, and gives recommendations on the best temperatures for cooking certain foods. You can become an expert chef by merely reading and understanding this manual.
The construction of the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill is ergonomic, with stylish design from high-quality materials. It has some innovative parts like the adjustable dampers and heat gauge, to make grilling more fun.
Overall, the grill cooks quite well and is good enough to carter for a small family or group of friends. Not only is the performance acceptable, but the grill is also convenient to use.
Cleaning and Maintenance: 4.0/5
Cleaning the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill is easy despite not having a one-touch cleaning system. You could also maintain it by applying the appropriate oil in the interior wall to prevent rusting.
Warranty and Shipping
- Warranty: You are required to present a copy of the receipt (dated proof of purchase) when making a warranty claim. You are entitled to free replacement of defective parts under warranty. Char-Grill offers a warranty on certain parts ranging from 1 to 5 years, subject to specific terms and conditions. For a detailed explanation of warranty terms, read the product manual.
- Shipping: The Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill ships to many countries around the world, depending on the seller and your location. You should find be able to find a seller that ships to your location.
Similar Charcoal Grills to Consider
1. Akorn Kamado Charcoal Grill
The Akorn Kamado Charcoal Grill is similar to the Char-Grill E06614 Jr. Charcoal Grill in design and quality. The main difference between the two is that the former has wheeled legs and some extra construction between the legs and the sides of the bowl. The extra constructions provide more working space and strengthen the legs. It has a 27-burger capacity.
2. Ceramic Akorn Kamado Charcoal Grill
The Ceramic Akorn Kamado Charcoal Grill is a first-quality grill that is made of ceramic. It offers you a ceramic alternative to the steel charcoal grill, which is vulnerable to rust. This ceramic charcoal grill has wheeled legs and side shelves for keeping things as you grill. It has a 26-burger capacity.
The Char-Griller AKORN Jr. is one of the best portable charcoal grills on the market, especially if you’re on a budget. Despite lacking some fun parts like wheeled legs and side shelves, it does deliver exceptional service for grilling up to 8 burgers at a time. The adjustable dampers and fire grate offer flexibility with heat control, and the temperature gauge lets you monitor heat levels. It’s well-designed from high-quality materials and can generate up to 700 degrees Fahrenheit for searing lamb and other foods. The design also maximizes the amount of heat reaching your food, letting you cook more with less charcoal fuel.