The Bottom Line
This really is an impressive charcoal grill. It has a very large cooking area, heavy cast iron cooking grates, and an adjustable height fire pan. It even has a charcoal powered rear mounted rotisserie burner, though you have to spend extra to get the rotisserie kit. The charcoal pan is also cast iron and the fire box is 304 stainless steel, but at around $1,300USD, it isn't cheap. Ultimately though, this charcoal grill fails where all of this style do.
Built into a gas grill body, there is no way to shut this grill down. Airflow can only be controlled on a limited level so the fire has to burn itself out or be put out with water. This means no saving charcoal for the next cookout.
- Large cooking area
- Good construction with some 304 stainless steel parts
- Heavy cast iron cooking grates
- Looks like a professional appliance
- Charcoal powered rotisserie burner
- Not the most efficient design for a charcoal grill
- Can't be shutdown to conserve charcoal
- Comes with a rotisserie burner, but rotisserie kit is extra
- 605 square inches of primary grilling space for a total cooking area of 845 square inches
- Cast iron cooking grates
- Cast iron charcoal pan with six position adjustable height
- Front access door to charcoal pan
- Stainless steel, painted steel, and cast aluminum construction
- Fully enclosed cabinet
- Made in Canada by Napoleon Grills
Guide Review - Napoleon Charcoal Professional Grill Model# PRO605CSS
There is a lot to this grill so I am going to start with some of the more peripheral features. The rear mounted rotisserie burner on this grill is charcoal powered. What that means is that charcoal is placed into a box in the back of the grill either already burning or lit with lighter fluid. This sounds a little cooler than it really is since it can be a bit of an awkward proposition.
To use this rotisserie burner you are going to have to spend the extra money to get the rotisserie kit since it doesn't come standard with the grill.
The primary cooking system it pretty straightforward. A large cast iron charcoal pan holds the hot coals and can be accessed from a panel in front so more charcoal can be added without removing the cooking grates. If you think about that for a second you realize that to get this grill going requires removing the cooking grates, lighting a fire, getting it positioned as needed and then putting the cooking grates in place. An easy thing to do on most charcoal grills, but again, kind of awkward with this model due to the weight on the cooking grates and how they (three of them) fit into the grill body.
If you have experience with good quality charcoal grills that were originally designed to look and work like a charcoal grill you are probably going to find this model awkward. As I have said, there is limited temperature control via vents. Airflow can be modified but not completely controlled or stopped. The charcoal you put into this grill is what you are going to burn since the fire cannot be easily or effectively stopped by closing vents.
This means that this grill will go through a lot more charcoal than the typical grill. Considering the $1,300USD price tag, there are certainly many better charcoal grills on the market that are more versatile and convenient.