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Oct 8, 2011 05:29 PM

Pit Beef near Timonium/Lutherville?

I'm planning to take some out of town guests to Jake's on Falls Road (this place: ) but on the very off chance that we get there and it's closed I want to have an alternative in the nearby vicinity so we don't just stand there going "duuuuhhhh"
There's gotta be other spots around there. Any favorites?

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  1. Andy Nelson's in Cockeysville has pit beef, although I've never managed to stray from his pulled pork and ribs long enough to try it. Closed on Sundays, if that makes a difference.

    10 Replies
    1. re: JonParker

      Unfortunately it knocks it out. Any other suggestions?

      1. re: kukubura

        Never mind, Jake's was open. Man, that place might just be the best kept secret in the area. I don't think I've ever seen it mentioned on CH.

        1. re: kukubura

          I strongly advise you to AVOID Andy Nelson. They get a lot of hype on here for some reason. And overall the quality of the food is not great. It is a BBQ-place. Not Pit Beef place. If you like a meat sandwich slathered with some Vinegar-y sauce then go for it. Otherwise avoid.

          Glad you enjoyed Jakes!

          1. re: JamesPapa

            Jake's never disappoints... unless he's closed. Have you been? Maybe it can be my Chow-worthy find for the folks who introduced me to Grace Garden. Seriously, Jake's the bomb.

            1. re: kukubura

              Is Jake's the same as Shorty's?

              1. re: gregb

                It's formerly Shorty's. I think Shorty is/was Jake's dad, maybe.

                1. re: kukubura

                  I haven't been in a couple years, but I don't remember them serving anything other than pit beef, which I would classiify as second best in the area only to Pioneer.

                  Can't wait for the excuse to go back to try the wings, those pictures look insane!

                  1. re: gregb

                    We've had the pit beef, the ribs (which seriously might be the best I've had anywhere - including Alabama, Tennessee, etc), sausage, smoked chicken, pulled pork, and wings and it's all be awesome. Plus the sauces are all closely guarded family recipes. And the mac and cheese and cole slaw are great sides too. I think we've gone like 6 times in the last couple months.

                    1. re: kukubura

                      Can't wait to stop at Jake's. Do you know when it's open? I have a mac and cheesaholic/ rib fan coming to stay

                      1. re: curioussheridan

                        Not sure, but the phone number is in here:

                        Also, I'd call and see what they're cooking when you're going. I've been there when they didn't have ribs or didn't have wings. It's such a small operation that they don't necessarily make the full menu every day. Although they did recently get a new sign and put a flamejob on the side of the buildin... errrr garage.

    2. Is this the place that used to be at Windy Valley years ago (not to be confused with the current mediocre pit beef there)? If so, it has a very good pedigree

      1. Strangely enough, there is a place on Falls Road called the intersection of Falls and Joppa. Outside is a little stand that sells Pit Beef and other things. The beef I've had there is great!

        2 Replies
        1. re: crosby_p

          Huh! I'm by there all the time (on the way to Jake's!) And will have to try it. Don't remember seeing it...

          1. re: crosby_p

            That's the Windy Valley place I mentioned. Glad to hear it's good

          2. hmm Pit Beef. The Charcoal Deli across from the Pizza Hut in Cockeysville is pretty decent. The fries are pretty tasty and they have lemonade =)

            11 Replies
            1. re: armybaker

              Staying in the Inner Harbor on Tuesday and Wednesday next week. Is Jakes Far. We have a car and would like to see some sites. Where else would you recommend? Thanks

              1. re: Foodandwine

                It's not close, but a pleasant drive if taken outside of rush hour: Up the JonesFalls Expressway till it turns into Falls Road, a pleasant road with gentle hills and curves, one of which Jake's is on

                1. re: Foodandwine

                  I've never been to Jake's. If you are staying by the harbor and want pit beef, Chaps isn't far. Chaps is a bit of a drive and is in a bit less of a desirable location, but there are plenty of places in Baltimore that are less desirable. lol. The pit beef at Chaps is pretty good. Food Network (for what that is worth) has showcased it a few times.

                  1. re: armybaker

                    Thanks everyone for suggesting Jakes. I have hit him up twice in the last two months and was impressed with the ribs and the beef both times. He even invited me to his customer appreciation day on my second visit.

                      1. re: 2000man

                        I went with my son the other day. Go to the BBQ smoker and I let them know that I found them on the Internet and Im from Los Angeles ( wing and rib sample was given )
                        Two rare beefs, great sandwich!! I liked the Tiger Sauce and the Onions best. We were given a free soda or chips as its our first time there. They are so nice, that gal at the register said take a Snickers they are free?? Such a cool family, I was served by Jakes Brother ( forgot his name ) big dude :)

                        Now on to the beef. Its smoked top round and tasty. I see the love. I would only change the roll to a more crunchy type of bread ( I like hard rolls on most sandwiches )
                        Had a Snowball by the blue shack near the fwy entrance as well.

                        I wish I had a place like this at home...

                        1. re: Foodandwine

                          What a cool experience. I'm glad you made it up there. Definitely a special place! How'd you like getting such a non-typical "Baltimore" experience that is still super local and real? It's like, people come to Baltimore post-The Wire and think that if you're not afraid for your life you aren't getting an "authentic" experience. It's not true. So glad you had a good time.

                          Regarding the rolls, that's a problem in all of Baltimore. I don't know why they can have great rolls in Philly but in Baltimore as a whole it's just not a priority. Oh well.

                          1. re: kukubura

                            I went here on Saturday and got a rare beef sandwich with tiger sauce. It was really good and the prices are awesome. $6 for the sandwich and I think $15 for a whole rack of meaty, smoky ribs. Service was excellent, everyone there was really friendly and welcoming. My 20 month old loved the flowers we all got. :)

                            I've driven past this place for years when I used to live in the area, and never thought about it. I saw there was a smoker out front, but I guess I just drove by on days when they weren't open. I wish I didn't live down in Beltsville now, I miss pit beef, snowballs and peach cake. :( Thanks for the recommendation!

                      2. re: armybaker

                        I disagree, I find the beef at Chaps to be tasteless.

                        1. re: hon

                          Agree. Chaps is waaaay past its prime

                        2. re: armybaker

                          Timewise, Jake's probably isn't longer from downtown than Chap's, as I-83 could speed up much of the trip.

                    1. Just took advantage of this ridiculous weather and sat outside at Jake's with some rare beef, chicken and sausage and were thrilled to discover that they've switched to potato rolls. Don't know if it's a permanent switch but they're much better than the standard rolls. And of course the meat was as good as ever! Viva Jake's!

                      6 Replies
                      1. re: kukubura

                        Is he open year round? Any Rhyme or reason to what's on the grill any particular day?

                        1. re: gregb

                          Yep. Just had lunch there today. As he says, "7 days a week" . Had a fine turkey sandwich.

                        2. re: kukubura

                          Sounds like a roadtrip from the beach; can I get directions coming off 695? Thanks

                          1. re: ocpitmaster

                            I think he's open year round but it can't hurt to call and double check. And from what I've seen they always have beef, sliced smoked chicken, and sausages with peppers and onions. They usually have ribs and if you're lucky they have wings, but I don't always see those. I had pulled pork once but I'm not sure how often it's there (it was great, but I veer towards the beef and the ribs. And the sausage. And the wings.)

                            Sides are coleslaw and mac n cheese although the mac has a smokiness that I love but someone CH here wasn't big on.

                            Getting off 695 it's really easy. Get off at Falls Road where it connects with 83 South (not 83 North) and take Falls Road north just past Padonia Road. There's a little curve in the road just north of Padonia and Jake's is just past it on the left. You can't miss it (or the billowing smoke from the grills...)

                            1. re: kukubura

                              Thanks for the info; sounds like a Sat road trip soon

                              1. re: ocpitmaster

                                They are open year round and the above post is correct in terms of menu. I also LOVE the wings but they only have them sparingly it seems. I always see people getting a sandwich with both pit beef and smoked sausage w/ peppers on it ..... it is a beast of a sandwich and I am not too sure I could eat the whole thing...and I am a big eater!