Char-Broil American Gourmet 800 Series Charcoal Grill Review

  • Written by: Amanda Myers

Editor Rating: 5/5

Looking for a budget grill? We recommend the Char-Broil American Gourmet 800 Series Charcoal Grill. It is made of decent gauge of steel, performs adequately, and fully packed with features. For the price, this grill is definitely a great value.

This grill can be easily moved around in your backyard or on your deck with its wheels. Although it looks big in pictures, the grill is great even for smaller decks.

It has this barrel type of grill kind of look that is very popular these days. It looks rugged and solid and yet stylish and classic. It has a chimney and side dampers that not only adds to the overall look but they are very effective in controlling the temperature and smoke inside the grill. The built-in thermometer on the lid helps you monitor the temperature.

Furthermore, it has an adjustable fire grate that can be raised or lowered so you can get your food away or close to the charcoal. For easy cleaning, the barrel has a removable ash pan at the bottom half of the barrel. As you can see, you 3 shelves attached to this grill: front, side, and bottom. The bottom shelf is a great place for a sack of charcoal.

The grill is solid enough to last for several years depending on how you take care of it and how often you grill which is not bad considering its price.


Brand: Char-Broil
Type: Charcoal Grill
Model: 12301714
Dimensions: 49.5 x 42 x 29 inches
Weight: 89.1 lbs
Total cooking surface area: 840 sq in
Primary cooking area: 569 sq in, cast iron grates
Secondary cooking area: 272 sq in, chrome-plated swing away rack

Advantages and disadvantages

  • Affordable, Great Price!
  • Metal is fairly thick
  • Assembly is easy
  • Perfect for both smaller and bigger spaces
  • Wide cooking area with ample height and depth
  • Charcoal tray is easy to clean
  • Warming rack
  • Cooking grates are divided into 4 smaller sections
  • Adjustable fire grate
  • Adjustable dampers
  • Temperature gauge
  • Chimney with slide out cover
  • Comes with grate lifter
  • Tool hooks
  • Side, front, and bottom shelves
  • The coil on the handle slides freely.
  • Grease pan has to be larger.
  • Casters are plastic, most grills are though.
  • No instructions.


Temperature Control

This grill comes with different features including several ways to control the temperature inside the grill. The grill has a chimney with a slide out cover that allows you to control how much smoke or heat goes out of the chimney. You can also control the temperature from the sides using the side dampers. The adjustable fire grates allow you to control how close the charcoals are to your food by using the handles to raise or lower the fire grate (you can choose from 4 heights). These features are the reasons why this grill cooks excellently. While you're adjusting the chimney cover, side dampers, and fire grate; you can monitor the temperature using the built-in thermometer on the lid.


This grill has a wide cooking area with good clearance from the cooking grates to the lid so you can cook larger foods. The cooking grates are divided into 4 smaller sections allowing you to remove a couple of sections and cook skewer foods or replace them with griddle plate (does not come with the package) so you can heat a pan, cook sauces or corn. Because of its depth and high clearance from the grates to the lid, the grill can be transformed to set up for rotisserie.

Furthermore, the cooking grates are easier to clean because they are divided into 4 smaller sections so they'll fit easily in a sink. They are also a lot less heavy to lift when you need to add, spread or remove charcoal.


This affordable has several storage features. It has a bottom shelf which is ideal for storing a sack of charcoals, front and side shelves with tool hooks is very convenient to have so you can reach for ingredients and utensils immediately while you're grilling. Most importantly, the grill and the shelves are solid and stable so you can rest assured that any items you put on it are safe and secure.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use wood chips on this grill?

What is the length and width of the barrel?

What is the lid dimensions?

Is the fire grate height adjustable?

What is the body of the grill made of?

Is this supposed to be portable?

Do the tables fold down?