Jakes BBQ

Another meal, another review, another BBQ joint. Yes, I will admit I am a barbeque fiend. My last BBQ experience wasn't the greatest. So I decided to start hunting down a new place. A few months back, my friend and I were checking out the menu for Jake's BBQ in Carroll Gardens but for some reason we thought it was only take out. After speaking to a few people, we found out it is a sit down place but most of their business comes from take out orders.

I spent the week glazing over the Jake’s menu. I noticed Jake’s serves corn bread and biscuits. Any place that serves both is a place I would like to visit. I asked my friends if they would like to go and check this place out. So on a boring Friday night we rolled out to hipster land better know as Carroll Gardens. It is located on Columbia street a hop away from the Brooklyn / Queens Expressway. Jake’s was easy to access with tons of street parking. After parking my car and walking down to Jake’s, I couldn't believe how much this neighborhood has changed. It went from a desolate shit hole area, to restaurants, bars and shops. I am always in the market to check out a new restaurant. I quickly grabbed my blackberry and jotted a few places down. There were so many restaurants, that I would never be able to remember them all.

I walked into Jake's to get a table and the place was packed. The smell of smoked BBQ hit my nose and alerted my brain that my mouth should start salivating. As I wiped my mouth, I asked the waitress if there was a table available. There was a 10-minute wait. After 10 minutes, we sat down and were given menus. I didn't need the menu. I already had the menu memorized. My biggest dilemma was should I order the corn bread or biscuits. I asked my friend for his opinion and he made a good point. He said if I was eating fried chicken, which Jake's also serves, I should go with biscuits but since we're eating BBQ then cornbread is the way to go.

We started off with the BBQ sampler, 6 buffalo wings, 3 chicken tenders, 3 mozzarella sticks and 3 fried shrimp. For my dinner, I went with the assortment of BBQ meats. Pulled pork, smoked brisket and half a slab of baby back ribs, which came with two sides. I got the mac-n-cheese, coleslaw and cornbread. My friend ordered the same dish but he got coleslaw instead of onion rings. My other friend got a pulled pork sandwich with steak fries.

As I waited for our appetizer to arrive, I noticed Jake’s kitchen was bigger then the dining area. I also noticed this place took a lot of take out orders. In the 15 minutes we were sitting about 7 different people came in and out with insulated delivery bags and a few people picking up their take-out. I was surprised this place was so busy being we were in the land of the hipsters and a lot of hipsters are vegetarians. Our appetizers arrived and I started off with the shrimp. The jumbo shrimp was lightly breaded and fried. Very tender and a bit dry but still good. I reached over for a chicken tender, which looked like an ordinary chicken tender but it was juicy, tender and flavorful. The mozzarella sticks were where like the type that you would get at White Castle and the buffalo wings were fried and just tossed in a hot sauce.

Our main courses arrived and holy shit the plate huge. A 12" inch plate full of meaty goodness that would have any BBQ fan feel as if they were in heaven. As I took a sniff of my food to get my pallet fired up, the utter smell of smokiness came off the meat and a smile from ear to ear appeared on my face. Before I could dig in, my side dishes arrived. I was shocked to see the portion size of the side dishes. I couldn't believe the portion of onion rings my friend got. Kansas style BBQ is served with the sauce on the side. I took a few bites of each of the meats and I came to this conclusion for all three. The brisket, pulled pork and ribs were terrific. A nice Smokey taste which didn't over power the taste of the meat. Jake's makes their own BBQ sauce which was a perfect balance of flavors of sweet and savory. The mac-n-cheese was creamy and the coleslaw was out of this world. The cornbread was piping hot and delicious. I asked my friends what they thought about their dishes and they all agreed the food was terrific. My friend who ordered the same dish as me agreed this place blew out Wildwood BBQ. Wildwood is a different type of BBQ. It seemed corporate and like the food was cooked on an assembly line. Jake’s tastes like they chop up the cow and pigs in the back. I was stuffed. I started to do a Google search for a flat bed truck, because that was the only way I was getting out of my seat. We skipped dessert.


Lately I've been having less then great food. My friend and I went to the San Genaro Feast and I got a sausage and peppers sandwich from a street booth. It was the worst sandwich I ever ate at a feast. Even Nathan’s in Coney Island has altered their taste to satisfy tourists. This blog isn't my only gig. I wake up everyday at 5:30 a.m. I'm in charge of million dollar construction projects. I deal with deadlines and conflicting personalities between my co-workers. I like to treat myself to a nice meal after a stressful week. Lately, I have been having poor quality food. Culinary horror shows From Wildwood BBQ to Nove Italiano to Bella Luna. Finally a good meal! Jake’s was really fucking good! Our bill came out to $105 with the tip which broken down between 3 people is $35 a person. So not only is Jake's good but it's also cheap. I highly recommended Jake's and I give them a 4 out of 4.

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