April 14, 2023
When it comes to perfecting the art of pellet grilling and smoking meats, there's one essential element that can make or break your grilling experience: the quality of the grilling pellets you use in your pellet grill. Among the popular choices in the market, Manchester Barbecue Pellets and Lumberjack pellets stand out as the best pellets on the market. In this comprehensive comparison, we will delve into the differences between these two high-quality wood pellet brands, focusing on the presence or absence of bark in their manufacturing process, which is the key difference between the two brands. By the end, you will see why Manchester Barbecue Pellets emerge as the superior choice for a clean and flavorful grilling experience.
Operating a unique "round log" mill, Manchester Barbecue Pellets sets itself apart by exclusively using fresh, green, debarked hardwoods in its pellet production. This commitment to quality raw materials starkly contrasts with mass-market brands, which often resort to using dry sawmill waste such as sawdust and planar shavings from cheap filler woods. The result of Manchester's meticulous approach is a cleaner and more efficient combustion process, which in turn produces a smoke flavor that is authentically rich and unparalleled in the industry. While many low-cost competitors use additives and artificial flavoring chemicals, Manchester Barbecue Pellets remain pure and natural, offering a grilling experience that is genuinely superior.
The Bark Factor: A Key Difference
The primary distinction between Manchester BBQ pellets and Lumberjack BBQ pellets lies in the quality of their raw materials. While both are the only mills in the world that use fresh wood chips to create their pellets, Manchester Barbecue Pellets use debarked chips, whereas Lumberjack pellets use wood chips with bark. This seemingly minor difference has significant implications for the quality of your barbecue.
Bark: The Unwanted Ingredient
Bark in wood pellets presents several issues for pellet grill users. First, the ash content in pellets made from bark-on wood chips is considerably higher than those made from debarked wood chips. In a pellet grill, air convection is responsible for circulating heat and smoke around the food, which can also cause ash particles to blow around and eventually land on your meal.
While wood particles from debarked chips are harmless and can even impart a pleasant, smoky flavor to your food, bark is a different story. Bark often contains large amounts of dirt, grit, and other undesirable contaminants that can negatively affect the taste and quality of your barbecue. In essence, using bark-on wood pellets is like inviting dirt to dinner.
Manchester BBQ Pellets: A Cleaner, Tastier Choice
Now that we've identified the issues associated with using bark-on wood pellets let's examine why Manchester BBQ pellets, which are made from debarked wood chips, are the superior choice for grilling enthusiasts.
As mentioned earlier, debarked wood chips generate significantly less ash compared to bark-on wood chips. This translates to a cleaner grilling experience when using Manchester BBQ pellets, as there is a reduced chance of ash particles making their way onto your food.
The absence of bark in Manchester BBQ pellets ensures that your food is not tainted by the dirt and grit found in bark. Consequently, these debarked pellets provide a more authentic and enjoyable wood-smoked flavor that elevates your barbecue to new heights.
Pellet grills require regular maintenance and cleaning to keep them in top working condition. With lower ash content, Manchester BBQ pellets make the cleaning process more manageable, allowing you to spend more time enjoying your barbecue and less time dealing with the aftermath.
Debarked wood chips are often considered more sustainable than their bark-on counterparts, as they produce fewer pollutants and emissions when burned. This makes Manchester BBQ pellets a more environmentally friendly option for the eco-conscious griller.
The uniformity of debarked wood chips in Manchester BBQ pellets ensures a consistent burn rate and temperature control, which are crucial factors for achieving the perfect barbecue. On the other hand, the varying composition of bark-on wood chips in Lumberjack BBQ pellets may lead to less consistent performance, potentially affecting the quality of your meal.
In conclusion, both Manchester Barbecue Pellets and Lumberjack BBQ pellets offer a means to achieve that coveted wood-smoked flavor. While not all Lumberjack pellets necessarily contain bark-on wood, the majority do, making it difficult for consumers to know for certain the exact composition of their pellets. On the other hand, Manchester BBQ pellets provide 100% certainty that they are made from 100% debarked wood chips, ensuring a consistently clean and flavorful grilling experience.
Additionally, it's worth noting that Manchester and Lumberjack are the only two round log pellet mills in the United States. This sets them apart from other manufacturers that primarily use dry sawmill waste, such as sawdust and planer shavings, to produce their pellets. While pellets made from sawmill waste burn adequately, they generally lack the rich flavor imparted by round log-manufactured wood pellets. This is one of the reasons why wood pellets from big box stores may be cheaper; they are typically made using the same raw materials as heating pellets.
Ultimately, if you value consistency, quality, and a superior wood-smoked taste, Manchester BBQ pellets are the clear choice. By using 100% debarked wood chips, Manchester BBQ pellets guarantee a clean, flavorful, and enjoyable grilling experience every time.
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