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Primo Ceramic Grills

The Only USA Made Ceramic Kamado Style Cooker

George Samaras started building ceramic grills in answer to demand he saw for making a good quality USA made ceramic grill available internationally. Soon, as Primo expanded, he developed a patented oval shaped grill that offers even more versatility than previous round models. He wanted his grills to actually be versatile enough to cook an entire meal, and since the round design didn't satisfy his desire, his solution was the distinctive oval shape Primo grills have today.

Today, Primo is the only ceramic kamado-style cooker made right here in the USA. Watch the video to see how they are built and how they stand up against the competition.

Visit GrillBillies BBQ to talk to one of our experts in barbecue. We stock Primo Grills and an abundance of accessories.

What Makes Primo Exceptional


The combination of our premium-grade ceramics and natural lump charcoal creates amazingly juicy food with true charcoal flavor. The ceramic shell helps food retain its natural moisture.


Cook as low as 150°F to smoke a salmon or crank the temperature well over 850°F for sizzling steaks. Cook "low and slow" for multiple hours to enjoy a succulent leg of lamb or tender pulled pork.


You can be ready to cook in as little as 15 minutes; the same time it takes to preheat a gas grill.


Primo ceramic grills practically take care of themselves. Periodic inspections ensure that your grill will perform and look great for years. Our grills also work like a self-cleaning oven.


Primo ceramic grills are made to live outdoors. Our premium-grade ceramics, glazes and hardware are made to withstand extreme climates. You can depend on Primo Ceramic Grills wherever you live.


Primo ceramic grills are composed of a proprietary blend of natural materials to make the highest grade of ceramics available for superior heat and moisture retention. Use less fuel and reduce your cooking time.

The Primo Story

George Samaras completed his tour of duty as a pharmacist in the Greek military in 1986. Soon after, he found his love for the sea and began racing sailboats and captaining a yacht for tourist excursions throughout the Greek Islands. In 1988, he met his future wife Kelley, an American who was vacationing with her family and had chartered Samaras' boat. George was taken with Kelley and they stayed in touch after she returned home. She eventually moved to Greece and later the two were married. After seven years together in Greece, the couple decided to take on their next adventure in the United States.

On one Thanksgiving Day, George's father-in-law introduced him to a kamado cooker. This is where George realized the amazing flavor and juiciness a ceramic cooker could give any food. He purchased his own and regularly cooked meals for his friends and family.

George loved these cookers so much that he would ship them to Greece for friends and family. Eventually, George had over 80 people in his homeland that wanted a kamado. He reached out to the manufacturer to see if he could start a distributorship in Greece, but they declined.

Not to be deterred, George saw a niche in the market and decided that he would make his own kamado cookers. Many people, including ceramic engineers, told him that it couldn't be done, but he pressed on and spent the next several years developing and testing his own formula for the refractory material to get the right blend.

That brings us to 1996, where George founded and established Primo Ceramic Grills. Samaras chose the name, "Primo" because it means "the best" in Italian. His first manufacturing facility was a 700 sq. ft. space he rented. Due to the limited space he could only make two grills at a time and he had to drive across town to a kiln to have them fired.

As his business began to pick up, George continued to strive towards the best possible ceramic grill on the market, while maintaining manufacturing in the United States. George's love for improvement and innovation led him to discover that an oval-shaped grill offered greater cooking versatility and efficiency than a round-shaped grill. The introduction of the patented oval-shaped grill in 2002 established Primo as a major manufacturer in the ceramic grill market.

Primo Ceramic Grills Today

Primo Ceramic Grills and Empire Comfort Systems share many of the same distributors and partners. Nick Bauer, Empire Comfort System's President, and George had built a relationship over many years at industry tradeshows. The two became fast friends and had many discussions on how Primo could be incorporated into the Empire family someday. In the fall of 2019, this became a reality as Primo Ceramic Grills was acquired by Empire Comfort Systems.

Empire Comfort Systems is a 4th generation family owned business that was established in 1932 and is a leading manufacturer of gas and wood heating appliances, as well as gas grills, with Broilmaster Premium Gas Grills previously being acquired by Empire Comfort Systems. Empire is dedicated to building on Primo's quality name that George established, by continuing to invest in product improvements and expand the offered accessories.

Today, Primo Ceramic Grills are manufactured in Poplar Bluff, Missouri, and headquarter in Belleville, Illinois. You can find Primo Ceramic Grills in more than 24 countries around the world including, all of North America.

Watch Primo Ceramic Grills in Action

Primo Ceramic Grill Overview

Chef Ben Hester Grilling Chicken Tie-ups on a Primo Ceramic Grill

Chef Joshua Vilain Grills Black Angus Beef Iron Steaks on a Primo Ceramic Grill

A Walk Through of Prima Ceramic Grills by Lance of Grillbillies

Ready to Make an Informed Decision?

Our team of barbecue experts is ready to listen to your needs, answer your questions, and help you choose the right equipment to make your barbecue dreams come true. Contact us or visit us using the form and map below.

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136 N Pine St, Wendell, NC 27591

Store Hours:
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Saturday: 10 am – 4 pm
Sunday and Monday: Closed

Store Number: 919-366-5252

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