Royal Oak Steakhouse Lump Charcoal       Home       Lump Review Index      

Quick Stats
Date Of Review: July, 2008
Purchased From: Donated by reader, purchased at Menard's Hardware
Date Purchased: June, 2008
Price: 4.64
Weight: 8.8 pounds
Burn Time:
Ash Production:
Type of Wood: Unknown
Strange Material?: None
Scrap Lumber Pieces?: None
Smell: Moderate American hardwood smoke
Country of Origin: USA

Quick Links
Other Information: Click Here
Unusual Or Unique Statements: Click Here
Statements From The Bag: Click Here
Lighting Instructions: Click Here
Photos of Contents: Click Here
Other Photos: Click Here
Photo of UPC Code: Click Here
Contact Information: Click Here

Rate And Comment On This Charcoal: Click Here


Well, this was a new one on us. A reader sent us a photo of the bag of this Royal Oak "Steakhouse" lump charcoal and asked if we knew anything. We didn't, so they were kind enough to send us a sample for a review. Not to spoil the surprise ahead of time (actually there really isn't one), but we are not sure what makes this "steakhouse" charcoal since we don't, haven't, and never will run a steakhouse. But here goes anyway.

When we dumped the charcoal out for sorting, it looked good overall, but once we sorted it we saw that there is a decided lack of large pieces and a lot of small pieces. The chips and dust were low compared to other charcoals. However, there was a significant amount of uncarbonized bark in the bag, as you can see from the following table:

Large 0.5 pounds 5.7%
Medium 2.7 pounds 28.4%
Small 5.2 pounds 55.8%
Chips/Dust 0.7 pounds 7.2%
Uncarbonized 0.3 pounds 2.8%

Total 9.4 pounds

If you add the weight of the bark to the chips and dust, however, you still have an amount of unusable charcoal which is low compared to other brands. We found no scrap and no funny stuff in the bag.

The charcoal took 3.5 sheets of newspaper to light in our chimney starter test, which ranks low (easy to light) compared to other brands. While the charcoal was burning in the chimney starter, there was moderate sparking, but no popping. In the maximum temperature test, the charcoal burned at 890 degrees which is high compared to other brands. There was almost no sparking while the charcoal burned full bore during the test. Lighting with a MAPP torch did produce some popping so be careful when using any type of torch to light lump charcoal.

The burn time was high and the ash production was low compared to other charcoals we have tested. The price paid for this charcoal was very low compared to other charcoals (excluding shipping). This variation on the Royal Oak theme is a good lump charcoal. The only real grip we have with it is the relatively uninspiring distribution of sizes of the pieces in the bag. We give it our Recommended rating.

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Other Information


Unusual or Unique Statements


Statements From The Bag

"An American Barbecue Tradition", "100% Natural Wood Lump Charcoal", "No Chemicals Added", "Quick Starting", "Hotter Fire", "Made In The U.S.A."

"All Natural Charcoal

Steakhouse 100% Natural Wood Charcoal is changing the flavor of the backyard barbecue. 100% Natural Wood Charcoal is real charcoal. This naturally shaped charcoal lights quicker and burns faster and hotter than regular charcoal briquettes. There are no fillers added. In fact, this is the charcoal our ancestors used."

"What is 100% Natural Wood Charcoal?

100% Natural Wood CharcoalCharcoal Briquettes

Appearance Looks like wood burned after a campfire. No two are alike. Pressed pillows of charcoal. Uniform in shape.
Content Only 100% wood is used. Made from oak, hickory, maple and other hardwoods. A blend of woods and fillers. Only 100% wood if stated on bag.
Heat Value Cooks hotter than regular briquettes. Great for searing in food flavor. Lasts longer for extended cooking.
Time Takes 15 minutes to get to cooking temperature. Takes about 30 minutes.

Lighting Instructions

"For best results, start your fire 15 mintues before cooking."

"1. Ligher Fluid Method. Arrange Steakhouse Natural Wood Charcoal in a pile. Sprinkle with Royal Oak Lighter Fluid.
2. Wait one minute for the fluid to soak in. Light the pile in several places.
3. Wait 10-15 minutes or until nautral wood is ashed over. Spread charcoal before barbecuing."

"1. Optional Light Method. Open air vents on grill. Tightly crumble or twist 3-4 newspaper sheets and place on bottom of grill below bottom grate.
2. Place natural wood charcoal on top of grate. Leave at least 1 to 2 inches of air space between paper and charcoal.
3. Ignite paper. When coals are ashed over, begin cooking (10 to 15 minutes)l Add more Royal Oak 100% Natural Wood Charcoal as needed."

"Do not pour lighter fluid on burning wood charcoal. Never use gasoline to light fire. For best results, store this bag in a dry place."

Photos Of Contents

This is the contents of the bag. Those are 1 inch squares on the measuring bar.

Here is a closer view.

Here are the larger pieces we found in the bag.

Here are the uncarbonized pieces we found in the bag.

Here are the contents of the bag sorted into medium, small, and too small/chips/dust.

Other Photos

This is how the bags arrived.

Photo of UPC Code

Here is a photo of the UPC code on the bag:

Contact Information

Royal Oak Enterprises
1 Royal Oak Avenue
Roswell, GA 30076

About This Review

If you are unfamiliar with our testing procedures, you may wish to read How We Review Lump Charcoal before reading this review. Also, you can read How We Score Lump Charcoal to learn about our scoring system.

Prices listed in our reviews are current as of the date of the review. We do not attempt to keep these prices current.

The conclusions and final rating given any charcoal are based upon the opinion of the author. We recommend that you use our rating only as a guide. You should read the entire review and decide what is important to you in making any buying decision.

Performance ratings are designated with stars, 1 star being the worst and 5 stars being the best:

= Performance is Far Below Average
= Performance is Below Average
= Performance is Average
= Performance is Above Average
= Performance is Far Above Average

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