Re: Tastes like coal, what the hell?
Personally, I have never had much success with QL coals. One batch I bought was totally useless, they stank like gasoline, even after being thoroughly ashed. If you use QLs, you must let them burn OUTSIDE completely, until all of the igniter is totally burned up. Then blow on the coal, until you see some red.
No matter what type of coal you use, if the heat is too high, the smoke will taste awful. When in doubt, just remove or reduce the coals.