HOME > Chowhound > Kosher >


Dougies glorified junk food?

  • j

I had their generous $24 super combo platter which consisted of;

2 "Ribs" hand length bones laced with gristle and fat.

18 "Fire Slammers" bite sized dried out chicken filet, fried in soggy batter soaked with barbeque sauce.

2 "Cajun Chicken" palm size thin sliced chicken breast, moist flaky texture perfectly brazed, delicately seasoned.

36 "French Fries (Garlic)" soggy and horribly over salted.

1 thimble of "cole slaw" thick cut cabbage/carrot nicely balanced slaw sauce.


I should note that I did not use ANY additional condiments for the attempted consumption of this meal. I wish they had been less generous with the meat&fries and more generous with their cole slaw.
If I ever return to Dougies, the only thing I'd reorder would be the Cajun Chicken and Cole Slaw because I though the rest of it was complete crap.
I'm just wondering if I simply have an inexperienced BBQ pallet, or is Dougies overrated by the Kosher consumer due to the lack of decent Kosher BBQ venues.

Link: http://www.dougiesbbq.com/

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Years ago - before I kept kosher - I had the opportunity to eat BBQ in the Mississippi Delta. There is no place in the north-east that can even closely compare. So, while I don't think anyone would dispagree that Dougies is, in fact, "overrated by the Kosher consumer due to the lack of decent Kosher BBQ," you are probably also true in saying that "have an inexperienced BBQ pallet." Dougies is the kosher world's junk food, and just as no one expects to get a good meal and McD's, I put Dougies in that same box except for the hashgacha.

    1. Just wanted to say that I think that Dougies is a franchise, and I'm not sure if it's fair to make a blanket statement about all of the Dougies establishments. I've been to several of them over the years. In recent years, I've been to the one in Teaneck, and we've been pretty satisfied with it, as it compares with other informal family type restaurants.

      9 Replies
      1. re: Barbara K.

        "I'm not sure if it's fair to make a blanket statement about all of the Dougies establishments."

        My post was about a single person trying to enjoy a single meal at a single Dougies, which in this case was on 72nd Street, the UWS. I did not say or even imply avoiding Dougies, simply that I found only a minority of their offerings to be of acceptable quality as to justify ordering in the future. I even publicly questioned my own palates ability as to whether I should expect more, given my limited experience with Fried/BBQ meals.

        in all fairness; mostly the fried food was of substandard quality (which was supposed to be Dougies strong point). considering that the art of deep frying involves special temperature and timing considerations, it is within the realm of possibility only my meal was screwed up. my guess is the oil was too cold or they put too many things in at once (making the oil cook colder, thus making everything a soggy mess).

        however, the dry sinewy chewy mass of the chicken used inside the fire slammers, the over salted fries, and meatless ribs cannot be attributed only to faulty frying techniques.

        the founders of this web site claim they; "launched this site to provide a non-hypey haven where their fellow hounds can opine, bicker, and rave to their hearts' content." I didn't realize the "Kosher" section was actually intended to lend some sort of moral support to restaurants that dare limit themselves to Kosher clientele, and genuine criticism is not tolerated.

        1. re: Joe Berger

          I'm the last one to give any kosher restaurant a free ride. But what you need to understand about Dougie's is that it's junk food and is enjoyable because it's horrible. Dougie's is the greasy, unhealthy, delicious indulgence that everyone loves to hate. People go there, get sick afterwards, and then crave it again a week later. I've complained about the food and service, but I'll be back too. In fact, I'll be back as often as I can.

          1. re: matzohrella

            Thanks for that "confession" matzohrella; thus supporting my original premise that Dougies is probably "overrated by the Kosher consumer due to the lack of decent Kosher BBQ venues".

            either that, or there is some sort of addictive drug in the barbeque sauce... just kidding ;^)


            I know people often have salt cravings; if you are concerned for your health, may I recommend dried seaweed.

            Link: http://www.alcasoft.com/seaweed/pages...

            Image: http://www.alcasoft.com/seaweed/image...

            1. re: Joe Berger

              Dougie's has been going downhill for years. My best meal there was also my first -- in 1994(?), when it first opened. The fries were never as good in subsequent visits. The steak isn't comparable to finer restaurants, yet the price is close. Service is generally slow, yet they try to rush you out when you finally get served.

              Take-out buffalo wings are the way to go. But those too are not as good as they once were. The recipe changed a few years back and they lost some flavor.

              There isn't much competition for kosher bbq so Dougie's lives on. It's got sort of a cult following, even though it's service and food aren't what they used to be.

              1. re: Nate

                "There isn't much competition for kosher bbq so Dougie's lives on. It's got sort of a cult following, even though it's service and food aren't what they used to be."

                There used to be another BBQ place on 72nd called Gotham Grill. Great burgers, nice layout, area for th kids to play, fries that actually tasted like they'd been potatoes once...

                People wanted to go to Dougies instead.

                1. re: Morts

                  Well, back then, the wings were good and they were a hit.

                  1. re: DeisCane

                    I went to Dougie's once with a Jewish friend who craved it. First, it was unfathomably expensive. That, of course, is the curse of the observant Jew, who faces kosher restaurants, butchers, et al charging 50% or more above what the rest of us have to pay.

                    But the food was just awful. My wife ordered ribs and got this awuful, grisly mess, like something you might toss to a labrador to gnaw on. No spicing or smoking was in evidence and, of course the BBQ sauce was catsupy and spice-free as well. I had a chicken sandwich that was flat and dry.

                    But my friend loved it, oddly. Anything for grilled kosher meat.

            2. re: matzohrella


              That's true, but its quality has gotten lower in recent years.

              1. re: matzohrella

                I totally agree with you on that one, I sometimes get this craving for their hot wings, and when I get an upset stomach I promise myself never to go there again but inevitably I get that "wings" craving and I can't stop myself from going again. it's a vicious cycle.

          2. Dougie's gives junk food a bad name. Junk food is edible; Dougie's often isn't. And the fare is the same at all the locations--that's why it's called a "chain."

            1 Reply
            1. re: Lindy

              "And the fare is the same at all the locations--that's why it's called a "chain.""

              Actually, it's a franchise, not a chain. Big difference.

              And the fair isn't the same. If you think most Dougies is unedible, try the one in Teaneck. Suddenly, the other Dougies are like ambrosia.

              And Dougies should be sued for false advertising with that "Cajun CHicken". I've had spicier glasses of water.

            2. Has Dougie's in teaneck also closed? I know the one on the West Side is gone, but I phoned Teaneck while driving through and was immediately greeted by voice mail. It sends you to an extension and that is not answered I tried a few times when driving through the area and planning to pick up tempura vegetables

              1. when did the dougies on the west side close? and why?

                1. Went to Dougie's up in Woodbourne in the Catskills on Camp Visiting Day recently, and I must say the food was awesome. Burgers and dogs were great, healthy portions of quality fries, and of course the fire poppers were amazing. I rarely go to the ones closer by in the NYC area, but just wanted to share a positive Dougie's experience to combat all the harsh critiques listed so far!

                  1. Here in the 5 towns a dairy restaurant (Dairy Review) closed and a Dougies opened in its place. I haven't gone there since my daughters refused to accompany me. They had experience with the one in Queens and hence their refusal to go. I sure hated when Dairy Review closed since there are plenty of meat places to eat here in the five towns while not that many dairy places (excluding pizza places - and I do not care for pizza). A few steps away from Dougies is Yossi's Grill - so Dougies opening did not provide me with a new eatery instead it removed one.

                    1. Dougie's on the west side closed around 6mos. ago, iirc. The food wasn't edible; maybe that's why.

                      1. MartyB, you are right on the money. The Five Towns did not really need a Dougie's. Most of the Dougie's menu is available at the various meat establishments (restaurants and take out)in the Five Towns area. The "ambiance" of Dougie's does not warrant the prices that it charges. The most successful food establishments in the history of the Five Towns are the ones that are the most affordable for continual family dining. Dougie's is not exorbitant by any means, but it can still be expensive for an evening of family dining for the average family.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: jeterfan

                          I wouldn't mind a Kosher Delight here in the 5 towns. I used to go to them almost every Sunday when I lived in Brooklyn. Nice selection, quick service, reasonable, no tipping.

                        2. Love it or hate it, Dougie's is missed on the West Side. After six months it's still strange not to have it there. Dougie, if you still read this board, why not post and explain to us what went wrong. It's time to reopen the West Side Dougie's.

                          1. Good post, matzohrella. I think that Dougie's went downhill with the move across 72nd street.

                            1. I would also prefer Kosher Delight over Dougie's. However, it would be really interesting if someone decided to open a Kosher Subway franchise in the Five Towns. If this did occur, the food, service, and pricing would have to be good. Novelty establishments only last so long if customer satisfaction is not there.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: jeterfan

                                Jeterfan, they have a takeout station in an Atlanta 'regular' grocery that serves kosher subway style subs. It serves them on pas yisroel bread with all the toppings. It is a great thing, as a person can make an order, shop, then pick up the subs for dinner after being too tired to cook from all the grocery shopping. Also great for taking on outings or for impromptu get togethers. Because there is less meat on a subway style sub, it is cheaper to make than a deli-style sandwich so the proprieter profits. I think you are on to something!

                              2. Southern,

                                I am sure that jeterfan is referring to the new kosher Subway in Cleveland.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: DeisCane

                                  I am referring to the new Kosher Subway in Cleveland. It is wishful thinking on my part, that someone could open a Kosher Subway franchise in the Five Towns area. It has the right demographics to support a well run restaurant. The Five Towns has been able to support a different national franchise, a kosher Dunkin Donuts for over 20 years. With the proper management, even a kosher meat franchise could do well.

                                  1. re: jeterfan

                                    Dunkin donuts in the 5 towns gets a lot of the non-Jewish business too due to it's location. I'm not so sure a Subway would make it in the 5 Towns btw the rent costs and the franchise costs

                                2. I am posting this on a few recent experiences at the one in Teaneck. It's bad. The food was nothing special, and on the last visit, EVERYONE who was with me, including myself have had stomach problems. One of my friends went to a doctor to get an e-coli test. Sure it is "kosher fast food" but it is still a business and a business needs to be run responsibly. The past few times I went, I thought it would improve. Well, I will admit I am wrong, the food didn't improve, it got worse and now I am even suffering from stomach problems. I think that says enough.

                                  7 Replies
                                  1. re: omegax80

                                    why would anyone living in Teaneck go to Dougies instead of Smokey Joe's?
                                    besides, many people develop an aversion to high fat high salt low fiber food.

                                    1. re: Joe Berger

                                      Just fun to read the post and read all the Subway in the five towns mentions before its time.

                                      I keep hearing rumors that dougies in the 5 towns is slowly going out...anyone else hear this?

                                    2. re: omegax80

                                      Just had Dougie's delivered to my office in midtown. What a mistake. French fries were ice cold. Burger was completely raw on the inside. Disgusting.

                                      1. re: omegax80

                                        We live in Teaneck, and my kids love Dougie's. But what do they know? They're just kids. I CRINGE when we have to order from there. The ribs used to be good, years ago, but now they just taste like old cow parts that have been left in the freezer too long. The chicken nuggets/poppers give my jaw a great workout just trying to chew them. The buffalo wings taste like they've been soaking in vinegar for a week and a half. There's no sense of pride in the food. Whatever comes out of the kitchen, in whatever form, goes out on the plate. Raw, overcooked, underspiced, overspiced. Whatever. And that's just the food. You can't even discuss service and presentation. There's just nothing there to discuss. They herd the people in, slop something down on the table, and herd them out. Dougie's is suffering from the malady that many restaurants (and other institutions) in Teaneck are suffering from - There are so many people eating out, that they are successful despite being terrible. If the people keep coming, you're never forced to clean up your act. Smokey Joes was not enough of a wake-up call. Still plenty of customers left. Maybe the next restaurant will start to eat into their marketshare, and they'll be forced to take a good look at what they've become.

                                        1. re: bfarkas

                                          while I really love BBQ food, when my friends drag me to Dougies,
                                          I always order the sandwich wraps. I know, it seems a bit wimpy,
                                          but they're fair to good, and it's the only way to get out of there alive.

                                          1. re: Joe Berger

                                            I tried wimping out with a hot open turkey sandwich at Dougies in KGH. Hard to believe they even messed that up with some awful excuse of a turkey "gravy"

                                            1. re: Joe Berger

                                              I agree that the wraps are not bad taste-wise. But it hurts me to pay $14.00 (or is it more?) plus tax and tip, for a plain wrap, with no side dishes, served on a plain white plate without even a bit of salad to garnish it. It's just so cheap of them. I can go to other Israeli style restaurants and get the same wrap for under $10.00.

                                        2. Ribs laced with gristle and fat, dried out chicken filet and soggy fries. It’s a wonder they are still in business. When they opened here in the 5 towns, I wanted to go since I only went to them once (in Queens) and was not impressed. My daughter said "are you nuts? - Their food is awful!" Maybe the place should be called Doggies.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: MartyB

                                            " Maybe the place should be called Doggies." I had a similar name in mind, but I don't think the chowhound censors would allow it

                                            1. re: berel

                                              Let me see, there's a chain out here called Johnnie Rockets, maybe Dougies should be called "Doggie Rockets". Well, that really was unkind, and I'm sorry. I was once at the Teaneck Dougies, had the hot wings, and they were perfect. I went to a Dougies in Manhattan, and it wasn't nearly as good. I never tried their ribs, 'cause ribs shouldn't oughta be made like that- As far as I'm concerned, it's smoked or nuttin. But wings are best boiled in a pot of Frank's, or something similar, and the ones I got in Teaneck must have been made that way, but then they must have used the boiling sauce and thickened it to make a dipping sauce, and it was wonderful. They were the first wings I ever liked made by someone else.