Hasty-Bake Continental 83 Dual Finish Charcoal Grill

Hasty-Bake Continental 83 Dual Finish Charcoal Grill
Hasty-Bake Continental 83 Dual Finish Charcoal Grill. Hasty-Bake

The Bottom Line

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Some people manage to get it right the first time. Grant Hastings got it right when he built the first Hasty-Bake Grill in 1948. This charcoal grill has changed little in function since then. Basically, it is a closed box with a charcoal pan mounted so it can be adjusted close to the cooking grate for high, direct heat, or raised as much as 14 inches to lower temperature cooking.

Add the removable heat diffuser and it grills, smokes, or bakes. This makes the Hasty-Bake design one of the most versatile on the market. There are many models and this version, one of the smallest and least expensive; starts are around $1,000USD, so this isn't an inexpensive product. However, the quality construction (made in the US) means it can last a very long time.

Pros

  • Highly versatile charcoal grill
  • Excellent construction
  • 14 inches of adjustment in the charcoal pan

Cons

  • High price
  • paint can peel away from inside with high temperatures

Description

  • 289 square inches of primary grilling space for a total cooking area of 508 square inches
  • Crank adjustment moves firebox up and down as much as 14 inches
  • Stainless steel and glass hood and painted steel body
  • Ventless hood holds in smoke
  • Grease management system channels grease away from the fire reducing flare-ups
  • Side door allows access to pullout charcoal drawer (fully removable)
  • Removable heat deflector for indirect cooking
  • Fully removable ash tray
  • Made in the United States 

Guide Review - Hasty-Bake Continental 83 Dual Finish Charcoal Grill

Before George Stephen threw charcoal in the bottom of a buoy or Hilton Meigs cast the first Portable Kitchen grill, Grant Hastings made the first Hasty-Bake Charcoal Grill.

Grant's grill was obviously a genius because after more than 60 years the design hasn't changed much. This iconic grill has a very loyal following of users who have the advantage of seldom, if ever, having to replace their grill. Unlike so many grills built these days, the Hasty-Bake, is built to last a very long time.

There have been many imitators over the years, so most of the features of the Hasty-Bake Grill may not seem innovative today, but it truly is an amazing piece of engineering. Basically, a metal box from the outside inside is more than the typical firebox and cooking grate. At the bottom is a removable ash catcher, below the deep charcoal pan (stainless steel grate at the bottom to let the ash fall through). This charcoal firebox can be adjusted by a crank built in the side that raises or lowers it be as much as 14 inches. This allows for high, intense direct grilling or low and slow cooking. Add the removable heat diffuser above the charcoal pan, below the cooking grates, and this is an idea grill for indirect cooking or smoking. The cooking grates are angled into a v-shape that drains drippings away from the firebox, reducing the flare-ups dramatically.

Any Hasty-Bake grill is a long term investment.

This model, the Continental 83 is one of the smallest full sized grills. It starts at around $1,000USD so it isn't an impulse buy. The company estimates that one of their grills will last 15 to 25 years. Why should anyone take their word for it? There are people who have models of these grills going back to the 1950's and collectors are always searching for the original 1948 version. Often these early models can be found in working order and Hasty Bake offers reconditioning services promising to restore any model to perfect condition. I know of no other company in the industry who does this. (Of course, reconditioning isn't a free benefit, but general warranties are long and provide excellent coverage).

The Continental offers a total of 508 square inches of cooking space split between two levels.

The stainless steel hood has a glass plate so you can watch what is cooking on the top. This upper chamber is much more for slow roasting, giving this model a little more versatility.