Friday, January 29, 2010

Lunch from Celtic Wolf Again

Just a quick blog update today to say that we had another lunch from Celtic Spirit BBQ. We had a Cuban sandwich made with smoke ham, pulled pork and home made cuban bread, all from Pete's Big Green Egg ceramic charcoal cookers. The sandwich size was generous and the sandwich was just plain superb. The sides were some very very tasty potato salad and some slaw. Dessert was some bread pudding to die for. All this for $7.95 and we were all stuffed and happy.

We're telling you, folks. If you live close enough to have Pete deliver lunch, you need to take advantage of this. It's time for our nap now....

- TNW

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Big Green Egg Announces New Firebox Design

Did we miss it, or has there really been nothing posted anywhere about a new firebox design? Our dealer just showed us an announcement from BGE about a new firebox design that is being phased in as old inventories are depleted. What we saw was a bad copy of the announcement, but from the picture on the announcement it looks like what they did was something like if you took an existing firebox and made a vertical saw cut down the back of the box. This would presumably allow expansion and contraction and prevent breakage.

There was no word of a similar change to the firering, but then we've always thought that firering breakage was pretty rare, based on the number of posts on the Big Green Egg forum.

So, it should be very interesting to see how the new firebox does in the field. We're sure we have all wondered about how bad the warantee expense must be to BGE to replace broken fireboxes. Here's to hoping that they have solved the problem.

- TNW

Update: Reports are that some dealers have already received shipments that include the new firebox.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Review of aFire Coconut Charcoal Posted

Well, we finally posted the review of aFire Coconut Charcoal. We felt that a word of explanation was in order. It took forever because we thought of a few new things to test, because we wanted to verify or disprove the claims on the box, and because we have been waiting for a response from the owner of aFire regarding a very serious issue with the charcoal

The box we purchased was almost 2 pounds underweight. We asked a dealer to weigh a couple of boxes and both boxes they weighed were also significantly underweight. We waited 2 weeks for the owner to respond, but we finally gave up. If the owner does respond, depending on the nature of the response, we may change our final rating. But as expensive as this charcoal is, getting 11% less charcoal than is advertised is just not acceptable.

So you can read the review (it's one of our most in-depth reviews ever) and view the results. You should obviously base your buying decision on the price and the performance. But for now, we can't give an acceptable rating as things stand.

- TNW

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Lunch in Central North Carolina Just Got A Whole Lot Better

We try to keep this blog related to BBQ, ceramic charcoal cookers and charcoal, but we don't think we're getting too far adrift by blogging today about a fledgling lunch business that is starting up in central North Carolina. Yep, you know him as Celtic Wolf and his business/website is Celtic Spirit BBQ. You'll find it at www.celticspiritbbq.com, funny enough!

Celtic Spirit is delivering quality lunches, all cooked/baked/smoked on their stable of Big Green Egg ceramic cookers. Last week we hosted a trial run before the official opening with a smoked turkey sandwich on ciabatta bread with potato salad and cranberry sauce. The smoked turkey was spot on, moist and with a nice amount of smoke flavor from the charcoal fire.

But that was a dry run. Today we hosted the real deal with Celtic Spirit BBQ delivering 8 lunches to our official place of business. On the menu was an Italian chicken sandwhich with aioli, potato salad, and fennel slaw. Comments from the 8 customers ran from "Excellent!" to "...best slaw I've ever had!" to "Great value for money." This particular lunch was delivered to our door for $6.95. All eight customers are looking forward to our next lunch from Celtic Spirit BBQ.

The food really is a cut above most anything you would expect to get if you went out to lunch. The portions were good, the flavor was great and the cook is really putting something special out in the way of his selection of items. If you are looking for something different and better than your usual lunch, especially if you would like to serve something above the rest at a meeting you are hosting, you should give Celtic Spirit BBQ a try. Check out his weekly menu to see what's in store. You won't be sorry you did.

- TNW

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Current Status of aFire Coconut Charcoal Review

We have finished all the tests, we've finished typing the review, we've finished proofing it. But we are still waiting on a response from the company regarding an issue we are having. We'll give them several more days but then we go to press without their feedback

- TNW

Monday, January 11, 2010

What's Up at the Naked Whiz Publishing Empire this week!

Well, it's been cold here in North Carolina, but that hasn't stopped us from resuming activities on the latest project: aFire Coconut Charcoal. We nearly froze to death (the temperature was actually BELOW the freezing point of water, where unbelievably, water actually turns into a solid!), but we did manage to conduct another test that allows us to compare this coconut charcoal to lump charcoal when grilling. We also did a simple hamburger taste test. (Someone has to do it.) Now all we have left to do one more taste test. Additionally, we are still waiting to hear back from the manufacturer about an issue we have with the charcoal. So, things are progressing and we hope to have the review on the web site soon.

We have other projects waiting in the wings, so keep your eye on the web site for all the latest!

- TNW

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Happy New Year from The Naked Whiz Publishing Empire!

Well, New Year's came in with a whimper here at The Naked Whiz Publishing Empire. We went down to Hilton Head for Christmas, and then spent a quiet week at the Empire for New Year's. It seems most of the children in our neighborhood have grown up and left since there were no fireworks going off at midnight on New Year's Eve. We thought about pulling out some of the original Kingsford lump, though...

So, what's up? Well, we suppose we need to address the continuing delay in publishing the review of aFire coconut charcoal. We decided we wanted to try a couple more things in order to try to completely address the claims made by aFire. We are finding out that things are little more complex than we had assumed. We also wanted to try cooking some chicken over it to see if there is any flavor contributed to the food by the charcoal. Needless to say, between the weather and the holidays, we have had trouble finding the time and conditions to complete our work. But, weather permitting, we may try to finish up the research this weekend or next.

We recently published a white paper on the safety of using a Rutland Grapho-Glas gasket on a ceramic charcoal cooker. We wanted to get the "facts" out there in light of the arguing that has gone on in the past on ceramic charcoal cooker discussion forums, particularly the BGE forum. We contacted Rutland to get their position on the matter, as well as to clear up this fiction that Rutland has told people that their product will harm unborn fetuses. We gathered data from various sources including Material Data Safety Sheets from the manufacturer and from other companies on fiberglass and graphite. We also included a report from The International Agency for Research on Cancer, an agency of the World Health Organization, on the cancer risks of crystalline silica, a minor ingredient in graphite. You can read to white paper to learn our conclusion on the matter, but you should read the information and make your decision about using this product.

We have several other projects in the works and we'll be letting you know more about them as they approach conclusion, so stay tuned!

We hope you all had a good holiday as we look forward to another year of exciting (?) projects here at The Naked Whiz Publishing Empire!

- TNW


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