Maybe this is a dumb question, but I'll ask it anyway. Hounds on the board have sung praises of Jay-Bee's Barbecue, but I can't figure out what place they're talking about. Searching the Web, I find what seem like two different places:
Jay Bee's House of Fine Bar-B-Que
15915 S Avalon Blvd
Gardena, CA 90248-2504
near Alondra Blvd
Jay Bee's Bar-B-Cue
11513 Knott Ave
Cypress, CA 90630-5768
near Orangewood Ave
Are these different branches of the same place, or what? Is one of them better than the other? Am I missing yet other Jay-Bees altogether? Any clues much appreciated.
the one in gardena, on avalon blvd. is the really really famous one, the one that's up there with woody's and phillip's. i don't if the other jay bee's has any relation to the gardena/compton one.
Both places have the same owner, and there's a third, related Jay Bee's in the Memphis airport (no kidding). I've only been to the one in Cypress, so I can't vouch for how the two compare. The pork ribs are very good, but I think the Crenshaw district places have a slight edge, partially due to their highly volume. The brisket is the thing to get here. The hot sauce is good and very spicy, but it's a little too spicy and tends to dominate over the brisket's smoky flavor. Don't get the chicken - the few times I have it's been extremely dry, like it sat around for a few days. Besides, the chicken at Nory's Peruvian down the street is 10 times better. Most of the sides are better than average, too - especially the black-eyed peas.
Jay Bee's in Cypress is one of the better cue places in OC that I've tried in the last few years. Papa's Western Barbecue has decent, if expensive, Santa Maria-style BBQ - good tri-tip - but Memphis/Texas/soul-style cue is more my thing. Haven't tried Burrell's in Santa Ana yet, though I've heard it's good.
The one in Gardena is good. It has a few dumpy picnic tables, but it's definitely a take away place and does a pretty good business at least on the weekend. I really liked the ribs but man is it out of the way. I also really liked the pork shoulder BBQ sandwich.
Remember the chowhounds equation, so if distance is definitely a factor, I'd stick with Philips in LA or Dr. Hogly's in the Valley.