There are some scorching spots. The left-rear aspect of the grill was constantly hotter in temperature-gun readings and cooked noticeably sooner. That is common although, each grill I’ve ever tried has scorching spots. What’s uncommon in regards to the Spark One is the way you arrange the two-zone system.
Two-zone cooking refers to cooking with each direct and oblique warmth. It is a cornerstone of nice grilling, and it is easy to do with most charcoal grills: transfer the charcoal to 1 aspect. That aspect might be a lot hotter and turns into your direct cooking zone, and the opposite aspect is your oblique cooking zone.
With the Spark One, it is a bit extra sophisticated. It’s important to take away the warmth diffuser from the middle. Then straight above the Briq is the direct warmth, whereas throughout it’s the oblique cooking areas. It really works, but it surely’s awkward to maneuver issues round when grilling since you are not going from one aspect to the opposite, however round in a circle. It is not a deal-breaker, however it should take some follow.
The one actual drawback with the Spark grill is the proprietary charcoal. It is not low cost, about $5 a Briq, and one Briq is one cook dinner. Nicely, ideally. In case you’re cooking for 2 folks, say grilling up some burgers fast, you may use considerably lower than a full Briq. There is not any option to cease the remaining from burning up although, so you find yourself utilizing an entire factor.
If, however, you are cooking an entire rooster and also you want just some extra minutes … nicely, you higher begin your oven, as a result of there isn’t any option to throw a pair extra Briqs on such as you would in a typical charcoal grill.
Briq choices are restricted as nicely. The one ones accessible now are for high-heat cooking. The Spark actually excels from about 450 levels to 850 levels, with 500 being the candy spot in my testing. If you wish to do a sluggish cook dinner, say ribs or brisket, you may want Spark’s low-and-slow Briq, which I wasn’t in a position to check.
That will get to the center of the issue with proprietary charcoal—availability. You may order Briqs on-line from Spark, but when the corporate goes out of enterprise, you’ve got acquired a $900, outsized paperweight. That is technically not true, as you’ll be able to cook dinner with common charcoal, however all the pieces nice in regards to the Spark would cease being nice. The precision temperature management is gone, it is a ache to mild, and in the long run, it’s going to cook dinner no higher than a $20 grill from a giant field retailer. You want the Briqs.
Therein lies the rub: costly Briqs with restricted cooking choices. In case you can dwell with that, the remainder of the Spark One is nice, and it actually does ship on its promise of charcoal grilling made easy.