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Jan 22, 2009 01:24 PM

Jimmy's BBQ in Malvern/Frazer?

I see that Jimmy's BBQ is now open. That is in the shopping center with the japanese place, thai place, staples, happy days diner, hilti, etc.

They've been doing catering for several months but now the restaurant is open. Anyone check it out yet?

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  1. My wife and I tried it on Thursday 01/22 for dinner. She had the pulled pork sandwich and I had the spare rib platter. Now for the truth; I'll try them again in 6 months if they are still there but not until then because quite frankly it was not a good experience.

    The pulled pork was cold, dry and a bit too chunky; should have been warm, moist and shredded. The ribs, which I heard on the radio they were calling the best in Chester County, were quite frankly not very good. To me a BBQ rib; and I've eaten in BBQ joints across the country; should be warm, moist, tender and lean. These ribs were cold, dry, Tough and mostly fat. The dry rub was almost tasteless and the ribs tasted more like liquid smoke than BBQ. If they are the best ribs in Chester County then they are the only ribs in Chester County and I don't think that's the case.

    The "platter" came with 2 sides. I chose Mac and cheese and Cole slaw. The Mac and cheese was dry, cold and bland and they forgot the Cole slaw completely. The portion was a joke; I'd say a couple of tablespoons at best. We also got the corn bread and although it was ok, it would have been a lot better if they had butter or something to put on it so it wouldn't have been so dry.

    The BBQ sauce on the tables was sweet enough to put on pancakes. The ambiance was boring at best but then they just opened. The place reeked of smoke as did the food. When we left our cloths and hair were so permeated with the smoke smell we had to go home and shower and change. The only time I want to smell like I just spent the last few hours around the campfire is when I just spent the last few hours around the campfire. Maybe the owners are trying to attract the local fire fighters because the place really did smell like a fire scene.

    On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the best, I'd have to say this place was a 2 and that's only because the restroom was clean.

    There were plenty of paper towels on the tables and the 2 staff members we spoke to were personable. The sink in the dining room for washing your hands has inappropriate handles, too much pressure and the water was very hot. I see someone getting seriously burned if they are not real careful.

    These are trying economic times and a real dicey time to be opening a new eatery, especially one with such a limited menu. If they don't improve the quality of their food real quick I speculate they will be gone by this summer.

    8 Replies
    1. re: rmorrison1116

      Thanks for the honest, but disappointing review. I guess, unless I hear otherwise, I'll skip that place for now

      1. re: rmorrison1116

        Wow, I was waiting a long time for this one to open. I will probably give it a try despite the bad review (if its bad, BBQ heaven at Mabel's is only ten minutes away!) Was the smokey smell Hickory or campfire? I never mind a little hickory!

        1. re: xtownj

          BBQ Heaven at Mabel's 10 minutes away? What/where is this place you speak of? I would so love some good bbq without a long drive! TIA!

          1. re: Mawrter

            downtown West Chester. i think there's even a website...try googling it

            1. re: FriedClamFanatic

              Mabel's is not the real thing. Stick with Jimmy's, just give him a chance to get organized.

              1. re: capricemental

                I think Mabel uses a pressure cooker for her ribs. Not much smokey flavor but the ribs are consistently fresh and tender. Its obvious that she uses good quality meats. I contrast this to some of the 'real' bbqs around that have meat that is old, tough, has strange colors, and is often greasy. If I want good smoked ribs, I do it myself (or drive to Syracuse). If I don't have six hours and I am craving good ribs, I go to Mabel's. If Jimmy's can provide good smoked food that doesn't taste like it was made a few days ago, I'll be a regular.

                Mabel's is on Market St, between Dunkin Donuts and the Great Pumpkin. Give it a try, I think its great. I have also heard good things about her fried chicken although I haven't tried it yet. Its take-out only.


        2. re: rmorrison1116

          Six of us went last night, having read the very positive review in the Inquirer. We were not disappointed. We ordered the smoked bacon appetizer and the chorizo and cheese appetizer. I loved both. The bacon is small bites of very thick bacon and has a wonderful smokey flavor. We ordered ribs, pulled pork sandwiches, and pulled chicken. We would have tried the brisket, too, but they were sold out. The ribs were big and meaty, tender and flavorful. We all thought that the sauce on the table was sweet and needed more "bite", so we grabbed a couple of bottles of tabasco from the counter and that made the sauce perfect for our taste. The pulled chicken was absolutely heavenly and a universal favorite. It has a unique lemony, smokey flavor that knocked our socks off. The pulled pork was good and smokey, but the least favorite of our group. We were stuffed by the time we left. We did bring beer, which was great to wash down all the great food. The help was great and Jimmy himself personable and entertaining. Check out the picture of his catering rig near the cash register. All in all, it was a very worthwhile trip and we will return soon.

        3. We got takeout last night. I was glad we did after my husband noted how smoky it was in there. We'll try them again in a bit, but mostly have to agree with rmorrison1116, although I'd rate it more like a 5 or 6. All the meats we tried had good flavor, but were dry and cool to cold.

          Service was REALLY bad. When we opened the bag at home, 2 of 4 meats were missing. We called to say we were coming back to pick up the other 2, and named them...expecting they would have it wrapped and ready to go when he got there. Not only were they NOT, he had to wait while they heated one selection. A number of things were sold out, but the sides we did get were OK.

          Hopefully things will improve after a few weeks, we really NEED a BBQ place!

          1 Reply
          1. re: Liz K

            I went to Jimmy's last Monday 1/ 26 and it was great. I got the 2 meat meal and choose pulled pork & brisket. I loved them both but the Brisket was fantastic. The baked beans and collard greens we also good. I agree that the BBQ sauce was extremely sweet but I don’t think any is needed.
            As for the smell/ smoke it smelled like hickory, there was no smoke in the restaurant and my clothes did not smell after I left.
            I will be back again & again.

          2. The original comment has been removed
            1. Just returned from my second trip to Jimmy's, last Saturday being the first. Both experiences were good and I would recommend Jimmy's to anyone. Last week I would agree that the mac & cheese was a bit bland, but that has been remedied. The pulled pork was moist and flavorfull as was the brisket, ribs, and chicken. I can't speak to the BBQ sauce because the meat stands on it's own and didn't need it. Give Jimmy's a try - it's the real deal.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Ellymae

                Glad to hear it! We'll get over there soon

                1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                  What happened to the reply from Jimmy himself??

                  Is that against the rules?

                  1. re: Major504

                    Please see our Posting Etiquette:

                    In particular the section under "FOR RESTAURANT OWNERS, FRIENDS AND OTHER INSIDERS"

                    Since the goal of this board is for sharing chow tips in PA, if there are further queries about site policy/rules, please post them on the Site Talk board (where discussions about the site are posted) or email us at, so that we can keep this board focused on the chow. Many thanks!

              2. Well, I had a chance to go there this past Saturday (2/7) and couldn't have been more pleased.

                Like Mr. Morrison, I've had the chance (and desire) to visit rib spots across the country, from the "Dreamland" establishment in Birmingham Ala to the "Dinosaur BBQ" reasonably near me in Syracuse. Those places have been up and running for years and are "well oiled" operations but the pork ribs at "Jimmy's" tasted as good as anything at those restaurants.

                My ribs were moist and meaty and nearly fell away from the bone. I can't advise anybody about the sauce in the squeezebottle on the table because in my view the ribs didn't need any help. They are "Memphis style" and so differ from sauce encrusted racks you get at places like Damons. If you like Memphis style, you'll like these.

                I got mine with beans (tangy) and cornbread... I probably would have had the coleslaw instead of the bread, but they were making a fresh batch at the time I ordered.

                The proprietor was walking throughout the seating area greeting me and other diners, and getting feedback about the food so I'd be surprised if any opening day issues still apply.

                The decor is simple but the place is about the food. I'm glad I tried it and reccomend it highly.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Upstate Riblover

                  Went to Jimmy's last week for lunch. Took home the Ribs, Pulled Pork and the Brisket. As the Riblover said...these are Memphis style, and they're pretty good. Good smoke, good seasoning. The sauce is on the sweet side, but then everyone likes it and makes it their own way. The pork was also fairly good.....I agree that the portion seemed a bit small. They say it's 8oz. ...but it looked a little light. The Brisket was great...and Brisket is BBQ to me. Again, good smoke, good crust, tender meat.

                  We had every side on the menu except the whipped sweets.The beans, greens, slaw and dirty corn were very good. The cornbread, and mac were ok..but again, this was takeout, and that killed the cornbread. They use smoked bacon in the collards...I'm partial to ham hocks, but this was pretty good.

                  As far as complaints about the smokey room, lack of decor, or unpolished've come to the wrong place for the wrong reasons. That's not what this place is for....this is where you come to get BBQ and feed your soul. I'd be disappointed if the place didn't smell of smoke. I'm actually happy to see a small, limited menu.....This guy knows BBQ, and that's what he's here to sell. Selling out of products doesn't bother me much either....usually means your food is fresh, and that it's selling. I don't wanna be the first lunch customer of the day and get last nights leftovers.

                  Mabels is ok.....the fried chicken is great. All their sides are seriously oversalted....and I love salt. Their ribs aren't even close to Jimmy's.

                  I've heard about another BBQ place in WChester...."Pig'n out" or something like that....any word on this??