It may surprise you to find only two brands here. There is a reason for that. We have used a lot of pellet smokers/grills. The issue is that very few of them have any temperature range to speak of — about 180 to 400 degrees is usually the norm.
They are immediately at a disadvantage as a smoker because they are made of metal and they don’t usually have a very powerful firebox. They aren’t able to get into higher temperature ranges because of the same reasons. Our experience so far is that there are 2 types of pellet smokers out there non-insulated and insulated.
Louisiana Grill is a non-insulated oven box but has the same control unit as the Memphis resulting is quick lighting and very consistent temp control. In our testing it is holding temps from 170 to 600 degrees with zero problem. Among the non-insulated oven boxes on the market it has the heaviest gauge metal and is the only one that is upgradeable. You can enclose the storage area, add an additional hopper bin and even add a warming box and cold smoke box to the smoker. The best part is that all these accessories work on all sizes of
Louisiana Grill. So purchase the model 700 for only $799.00 and then upgrade it to a full fledged competition pellet smoker if you want to. If you go with the other brands you’ll be purchasing a new smoker to get these upgrades. Available is 3 sizes the Louisiana Grill is the economical way to join the fastest group of backyard and professional grillers, the pellet heads.
The big separator is the oven box. It’s nice that it is Stainless Steel and it is pretty that they spend the time to round the edges but that really has nothing to do with the prior statement. The oven box is unique in that it is a true double lined insulated oven. No one on the market has done this beyond Memphis. The oven box enables the Memphis Pro and Elite to cook consistently at ranges from 180 to 650 or even 700 degrees and at great efficiency! The auger to drop the pellets is functionally the same, the electronic ignition is the same, the automated temperature control is the same..at least in a checklist comparison. The part you just have to experience is that every detail on the Memphis that is “the same” is done better. The auger is heavier duty and stronger, the electronic ignition is a better
design and the automated temperature control is unparalleled. Most pellets have an electronic ignition that is timed, it stays on for 4 minutes then hopefully the grill is lit because it turns off. The Memphis is monitoring the temperature and essentially it gives the grill 15 minutes to start, when the oven temp exceeds 180 degrees the controller turns the electronic ignition off because there is no way the oven could have gotten that hot without the firebox being thoroughly lit. Why is it limited to 15 minutes? Research has proven that if that oven box isn’t up to temp in 15 minutes something is wrong and you don’t want the electronic ignitor to get so hot it harms itself. The automatic temperature control contains a very smart algorithm that monitors oven temperature by the second and can change the drop rate of the pellets or the fan speed instantly so that regardless of outside conditions, rain, wind, snow, bright sunny day the internal oven temperature is always exactly what you selected. The Memphis even includes an internal meat probe and can be programmed to drop the oven temperature to 180 degrees when the internal temperature of the meat hits the target you selected. If you have read our site thoroughly you know that we are serious about US Made product, especially when it comes to grills. This grill is made is the USA and the quality of the Stainless and the technical support behind the grill is outstanding.
Local success stories are pretty strong too. Of our cooking teams 3 of the our 4 teams use Memphis in competition and Chris & Kathy Fulmer (team Ultimate Tailgaters) even used the grill/smoker at the World Championships in Las Vegas last year. Jim Burg of Team Killer B’s has won the SBN BBQ team of the year 3 years in a row on the Memphis and is the top 5 in the world as I write this in the KCBS standings (there are over 5,800 KCBS teams total). The Memphis is more expensive than the others, it is well worth the difference and is just as good at 200 degrees as it is at 700.