Home smokers are becoming more popular every year. A smoker can be the perfect addition to your outdoor cooking appliance collection, and if you’re a grill and BBQ enthusiast then you will love the results that you can get from a gas powered model.
The Smoke Hollow Smoker 3615GW is a feature packed smoker that manages to stay relatively affordable. It offers plenty of space inside for cooking meat, fish, and vegetables, and it is highly efficient and easy to use. If you are having trouble finding the best smoker for your needs, particularly if you want a large smoker that doesn’t compromise, then this full review could introduce you to your next purchase.
Key Features of the Smoke Hollow Smoker Model 3615GW
Although competitively priced, the 3615GW Smoke Hollow Smoker comes with features that you won’t find on some of the competition.
- Large viewing window to check your food without opening the door.
- Front loading wood chip tray for easy access.
- Single gas burner control.
- Built in temperature gauge.
- 4 chrome plated cooking racks.
- Push button for quick and easy ignition.
- Propane gas powered.
First Impressions, Design, and Construction Quality
Looking at this smoker the large easy-clean tempered glass window stands out right away. This is an excellent feature to have at this price, and it could completely change the way that you cook. Much like the oven in your kitchen, having a large viewing window will allow you to check on your food as it cooks, without needing to open the door. It’s can save time and energy because you won’t need to open the door while smoking, which will ensure that all of the heat and smoke stays inside.
Another feature that will be appreciated is the simple bottom loading tray that allows you to quickly top up the wood chips or pellets in the Smoke Hollow Smoker. Again, this is a feature that makes the unit more efficient and convenient, because you won’t need to open the main door during long smoking sessions.
In terms of aesthetics, it’s a great looking unit. It is similar to other Smoke Hollow models, as well as the Dyna-Glo Smokers that are also some of the best on the market. The all black finish means that the smoker will look great on your patio or anywhere in your outdoor cooking area. The combination of a classic and modern aesthetic will be appreciated by anybody who loves to match cooking appliances with their overall outdoor design.
The glass and steel construction is of top quality, and there is no doubt that this smoker will last for years to come. One thing that may be disappointing is the lack of insulation on the smoker. There are some models that come with double walls to help retain heat, although they often are priced higher up in the range. Although this smoker lacks insulation, there are no noticeable negative effects on smoke or heat retention, or cooking times.
Most of the smoker is delivered pre-assembled, and you could get everything set up in as little as 30 minutes. There are some smokers on the market that don’t require assembly, although it’s safe to say that they are not quite on the same quality level as this one. Assembly won’t be a chore and the instructions are all included in the box.
Overall, you won’t be disappointed by the look, the quality of the materials, or the design of this smoker. It combines the best of past and present, and it’s a smart looking smoker that you will want to display when you have guests around for your next cookout.
Function and Cooking Results of the Smoke Hollow Smoker
Design wouldn’t matter if the smoker couldn’t perform its primary function, so now it’s time to take a look at how the smoker performs when you are actually cooking.
The first thing to note is that this smoker will require seasoning if you want to get the maximum lifetime out of it. Seasoning also removes any debris and residue left over from the manufacturing process. To do this, simply fire the smoker up and let it run for an hour or two with some dampened wood chips inside. The heat and the smoke will effectively ‘clean’ out the smoker so that it is ready for use.
With the seasoning out of the way, you’ll be ready to get onto the cooking. Cooking in the Smoke Hollow Smoker is easy, no matter how big the cuts of meat are. By rearranging and possibly removing a tray you will be able to cook a whole turkey, pork loin, game loin (deer etc.), or even a large cut of brisket. Whatever you love to cook, you will find that there is plenty of room inside of the Smoke Hollow Smoker.
The glass viewing door makes it easy to check on your food as its cooking, and that makes for an overall better cooking experience. Being able to open up the wood chip loader is also a great feature, and it means that you won’t lose temperature when you need to top up.
The overall cooking experience is very user friendly and the results are incredible. It has been mentioned that the smoker lacks insulation, but this doesn’t have any real bearing on the final cooking results. Temperatures can easily be kept consistent, and you’ll be able to refer to the temperature gauge throughout a smoking session.
Smoked food comes out rich and tasty, and there’s no problem getting even large birds or cuts of meat cooked thoroughly right to the middle. If you have ever used an overly cheap and ineffective smoker then using the Smoke Hollow Smoker will be a real treat.
Top Pros and Cons of the 3615GW Smoke Hollow Smoker
There’s a lot to love about this smoker. It feels like a premium product even though the price is within the budget of most consumers. Here are the top pros and cons that we’ve found.
- Large viewing window makes cooking more convenient and it improves the overall aesthetic.
- You can load wood chips or pellets without opening the main door, and the loading mechanism doesn’t require a large secondary door.
- The gas burner maintains a consistent flame (see the next section for notes on this).
- The smoker is not insulated so efficiency will not be quite as high as pricier models.
- There has been a problem with some delivered units where owners need to adjust an air flow mechanism. Although easily overcome, this is something that should be clearly communicated in the documentation. (see the next section for notes on this).
Keeping a Consistent Flame with a Small Modification
If you like what you see in this smoker and plan to buy it, then it will be important to take note of this section. There have been a small minority of customers who have had trouble keeping the flame lit for longer smoking sessions when there is wind or a light breeze. Some customers have assumed that this is due to a defective unit, but it is actually due to the designer of the smoker, and possibly an oversight by Smoke Hollow.
At the point on the burner where it meets the regulator, there is a metal sleeve that is used to control the air to fuel ratio. This has clearly been designed to adjust the flow ratio for different climates, elevations, and wind conditions. Unfortunately, Smoke Hollow has not made a point of communicating the purpose of this part to consumers, and it has left some owners disappointed when they can’t maintain a flame.
If you live anywhere where you have mild wind when you’re smoking, then you will need to close the shield. This will ensure that the flame can burn low and slow without going out. This is one of the most important things to check when you purchase this smoker, because missing it might make you think you have a defective product. It is not clear whether all models come with the latch opened or closed, and most customers have had no problems with maintaining a flame.
Note that in some environments, the flame may perform better with the sleeve completely opened. This is fully adjustable, so you’ll need to find the right balance for your conditions and this could take some trial and error. This is a very simple fix for flame issues so don’t let any negative comments put you off of what would be a great smoker investment.
Final Thoughts and Recommendation
This is a great smoker and besides the issue with the air/fuel mechanism, there’s nothing to complain about in the design. The Smoke Hollow Smoker uses high quality parts and it could last for many seasons when properly cleaned and stored after each smoking session. It offers plenty of space inside for the average person’s cooking needs, and the results are as good as what you would get at the best BBQ smokehouse restaurants.
Considering that you get a large viewing window and an easy loading tray, you might think that this smoker would come with a premium price. It is actually surprisingly affordable, and for that reason it is easy to recommend if you’re in the market for a large smoker.