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FOGO Disappointment

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    FOGO Disappointment

    I’ve used the FOGO Premium (black bag) for awhile now and it pretty well always had nice sized pieces and very little “shake” (powder and tiny bits). I bought a couple bags back in November and noticed how small the pieces were and it had way more powder than normal. I chalked it up to get some of the bags off the bottom of the pallet. So in July I bought 3 bags from my local Ace Hardware. I’m using the last of it today and it’s been nothing short of a big disappointment again. The largest pieces are maybe 2”x1” and the majority are twigs and pieces so small they fall through the charcoal grate on my Weber. I would say over 1/3 of each bag has been powder, twigs and tiny pieces.
    Is anyone else having issues with the recent FOGO? I can go buy the cheap stuff from the big box stores and have a better product right now. I wish I could find some B&B or Weber!

    #2
    Just bought a bag of Fogo Premium to try out. So far, seems okay. I’m about to fire it up for the first time to cook a lamb rib roast on the Hasty-Bake.

    Comment


    • Dadof3Illinois
      Dadof3Illinois commented
      Editing a comment
      I had to watch it like a hawk because of all the popping hot coals. Let me know how yours goes

    #3
    Our Ace Hardware has B&B Lump.

    Comment


    • Dadof3Illinois
      Dadof3Illinois commented
      Editing a comment
      I’ve been trying to order some through our Ace but they can’t seem to get it.

    #4
    I just used it today, the pieces were so big I had to pull them out of the container by hand, when I tried to dump them they got stuck. Then I had to break them apart with a screwdriver to use them.

    I buy the bigger bags, the tan ones. I don’t know if that makes a difference.

    Comment


    • Dadof3Illinois
      Dadof3Illinois commented
      Editing a comment
      I think the tan bags are the super premium?

    • Mosca
      Mosca commented
      Editing a comment
      I thought they were the same as the black, but just a bigger size. I’ll look.

      Edit: you’re right. Two things. First, FOGO’s website says the only difference between them is lump size. Second, at least on Amazon the bigger tan bag is cheaper per pound than the smaller black bag.
      Last edited by Mosca; September 7, 2020, 07:28 PM.

    #5
    So far, so good. It definitely lights quickly and gets hot. Just fired up half a chimney and built a fire in the Hasty-Bake. Not too much issue with popping and such.

    Comment


      #6
      Used fogo for a couple of years, had same problems. Using Jealous Devil for a couple years now and it’s got a great mix of sizes in the bag, but no scraps and very little shake at the end . Probably my favorite all time. ZERO sparking/spitting. Their briquette product is nice too if you want less heat, more predictability.

      Also like the kamado joe XL product when you want the huge chunks for long cooks (I don’t use a kamado/egg cooker).

      Comment


        #7
        I order Kamado Joe big block at my Ace store. I've been very happy with it, both in size and the way it burns.

        Comment


          #8
          Never had any issues with either their premium “black bag” or super premium “tan bag”.
          Yes there is some small pieces and dust but it’s minimal and to be expected.
          I’m thinking that the Ace that you got it from miss handled it. They don’t realize how delicate lump charcoal is. Probably just tossed it on the shelf and moved on.
          I order mine directly from FoGo. Less handling. So less waste.

          Comment


            #9
            Ditto for me. I order right from FOGO and their the least expensive with a point thing. I’m due for a free bag with my next order. I think some of my pieces were small on my last order but not
            like you describe.

            Also the shipping box was totally demolished and gave up the ghost by the time it arrived at my house.

            The small shake pieces I use in my kettle so I think my terminology is different.

            I love FOGO and it tastes great on chicken. I don’t seem to consistently get the major chunkage like everyone else though. I also have less time using it comparatively.

            Comment


              #10
              I recently bought my first two bags and am near the bottom of the first one. The first 75% of the bag was packed with large and medium size pieces...very impressive. I’m finding that the bottom of the bag is delivering smaller pieces which is to be expected as we pour and set it down multiple times. It’s pricey so I was skeptical going in but I have to say I’ve been very pleased with the size and flavor. Wonder if you’re just on an unlucky streak?

              Comment


                #11
                There are some young boys working at my local ACE that are careless when stocking the charcoal bags. I've seen them throwing them around and slamming them on the ground. That's the likely cause if your FOGO is broken up. I don't believe they ship it that way.

                Comment


                • JGo37
                  JGo37 commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I agree with you - we're discussing different supply chains here from all around the country. The pizza is only as good as the guy who's making it feels that day...

                #12
                A small preamble to hopefully set context for my comments. I prefer lump, it's my thing and trying to convert me to briqs has a low level of success. As an adult I realize that lump is an imperfect thing, and expecting consistency is unrealistic. That said, if I'm paying for a product that both claims and is cheered by many as a Premium product, that raises my expectations and lowers my tolerance for poor product. And I may be half a bubble off as I dump each bag onto a drip pan and do a rough sort of lump sizing. My objectives are to better control my fire by using lump sizing to respond to the planned cook, heat desire, and time of cook. I break it down in three categories; large lumps (bigger than approx. 2"x2"), the smaller stuff goes in a separate tub for starter and filler, and then dust and chips that get tossed on the yard waste burn pile. I even go as far as to take pics to remind me what I saw, mostly for personal reference but sometimes useful for discussions like this. I haven't tried every brand under the sun, but have tried quite a few. At some point nearly every brand favored and cheered by someone on boards like this have disappointed. Whether it's rough handling in shipment or just cheap crap is not always easy to discern but the amount of dust/chip is my guideline for that, then lump size in general. I don't pretend to do thorough analysis along the lines of The Naked Whiz, strictly my experience/view.

                I recently ordered four bags of Premium in the black bags directly from Fogo (I've also gotten Super Premium and Quebracho before). A week after that I noticed that my local Ace had it in stock for the same price of $20 a bag. I bought the two bags they had left but haven't opened them yet to see if they've been beat up. Of the four bags that came directly from FOGO one was a disappointment. To me the norm is a bag that roughly 3/4 full by volume, however one of the bags was barely 1/2 full. When I put it on a scale it came in roughly 17.5 lbs. so it met weight which is probably how Fogo determines fill level at the packaging station. I sent an email to Fogo questioning this outcome before opening it as I wanted to see their response and follow up. Someone named Michelle responded in reasonable time with a comment that some lump is heavier than others which might explain it, or that if when I opened it I found that it had been pulverized (presumably rough handling in shipping) that they would send a replacement. The pics that follow are of two different bags, one a "normal" one, the other (with the red ring) the short bag. The short bag had very few, less than normal, larger size pieces, a whole bunch of smaller stuff, and little dust. I sent these pics with commentary and haven't heard from Fogo since. As you can see, as a volume measure the bag of "normal" stuff overflows the pan by a bit, while the shorty doesn't cover entirely. Given the marketplace image that Fogo seems to be striving for, this bag should not go out to a customer as it is not consistent with what they preach. While, technically, I wasn't cheated they probably should route bags like this to the guys who do their demo videos and not let a paying customer ever see it. But that's just the marketer in me talking. While somewhat disappointed I will probably continue to buy Fogo when on sale as it is usually consistently good. It does pop at ignition on occasion which some consider a negative, but I'm not sure I've ever found a brand of lump that didn't have that happen at one time or other. Measuring what's an excessive amount of that behavior is likely a personal thing. I've had Jealous Devil as well and my only complaint is there's been a consistent outcome of a lot of dust at the bottom, 2-3 times as much as I get from Fogo over time, though the usable chunks are nice and plentiful. JD is too expensive to tolerate that from my POV. In my experience, Royal Oak is consistently a loser, B&B is a dependable product with little waste and not an excessive amount of tiny sized stuff. And surprisingly, the Master Select stuff available at Sam's Club is right there with the B&B. Click image for larger version

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                  #13
                  I’m just hoping that their production took a hit during this pandemic and they will eventually get back to normal. Until then I’ll use what I have left in the PBC and try and find more B&B.

                  Comment


                    #14
                    Last 2 bags of Fogo in beige bag were disappointing. Very large and very tiny pieces. Larger ones need to be broken up and smaller pieces are like scrap that can't be used. Back to Jealous Devil that is much more consistent.

                    Comment


                      #15
                      I once got a bag of Rockwood that was all rubble and gravel sized. That was after reading on the BGE Egghead forum about how fantastic it was. I wrote to them, they explained that the lump size doesn’t actually matter because the burn is controlled by air flow. I thanked them for responding, and never bought Rockwood again.

                      Yeah, it’s controlled by air flow. But rubble sized pieces can clog the bottom air holes, and can lead to a fire cratering.

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