We started the week off with Kamado Joe officially releasing the Konnected Joe. As we wrote about last month when we found out about the kamado style grill, it’s a phone connected grill, that is temperature controlled like a pellet grill. A cool feature that we didn’t previously know about is the controller has a temperature graph on it to review your cooks.
Recteq also released new products this week with two smaller pellet grills. One is a portable and the other is for people that don’t have a lot of space. They are similar to recteq’s other pellet grills in specs, just smaller.
Another new grill on the market is the Ñuke Malevo Cowboy grill. This grill is a wood or charcoal grill that can also cook asado style. The grill grate can be angled up for low and slow cooking.
In our final article analyzing Weber’s process documents from going private, we looked at why they pretty much had to go private. They have a cash trough at the end of the month where they needed $350 million to avoid violating their debt covenants. That’s on top of the really high levels of leverage that they already had.
If Weber’s going to dig their way out of their cash problems and back to profitability, they’ll need new products to do it. Last week we reported on a series of automated gas grill patents. Another one was released this week that uses opening the lid of a grill to advance a programmed recipe. It’s a neat idea on any grill, but would be a game changer for gas grills.
I was on The BBQ Central Show this week talking with Greg Rempe about the technology that Weber is developing, amongst other things. It’s a great podcast, so be sure to check it out.
Over at Traeger, they’re closing a pellet plant in Redmond, Oregon at the end of the month. They noted on their last earnings call that one of their largest retailers was private labeling pellets, which will hurt sales. That, with the overall market, likely contributed to too much pellet production. It was a facility with an expiring lease, so it makes sense to close from a cost perspective.
Finally, we reviewed a Nexgrill Oakford pellet grill this week. It’s one of the best values in pellet grills out there, and we really liked cooking with it. We have quite a few outdoor cooking products that we’ve been testing, so expect more review content as we get closer to grilling season.