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JM Curley Fixed Their Fries (oh no!)

The first few times I went to JM Curley I had fantastic cocktails, delicious burgers (my favorite in Boston), and very sad limp french fries. I don't mind a few softer fries, but there was not a single crispy one in the bunch. Also way too salty. However, this was not the worst thing for me, since I have a disappointingly small stomach capacity. Bad fries meant that I was not torn between finishing the burger and having some fries.

No longer. On my last trip there, the fries were completely different and seriously good. Nice and crispy but not too crispy... still maybe a little salty for my taste, but whatever. So now I'm in trouble, but overall it's definitely a good thing.

Has anyone had the fried chicken or other non-burger options here?

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  1. The fried chicken is outstanding. I've had it twice and I highly recommend it. It comes with several unique sauces which are all pretty good except the sweet and sour. The pastrami sandwhich on the lunch menu is also very good.

    2 Replies
    1. re: mats77

      Thanks, I will definitely check out the chicken. Downtown during lunch is trickier, but I'll keep that sandwich in mind...

      1. re: mats77

        I liked the chicken, and agree about the sweet and sour (it is really disgusting). I also don't understand the service of the dish - trying to be playful, but just seemed pointless, especially the sweet tea.

      2. Funny you say this. I was there on Tuesday for lunch, and I commented how much more I enjoyed the old thicker cut fries. These felt under salted to me, and didn't have that nice crisp you need on a thin fry like that.

        The pastrami sandwich they were serving at lunch was fantastic, but it wasn't on the menu when I went earlier this week.

        2 Replies
        1. re: mkfisher

          Undersalted! I can't imagine. I've always gotten super-salty fries there. I'm sad to hear that they weren't crispy for you just this week. So maybe they didn't fix the fries and instead just forgot mine in the fryer until they were accidentally properly cooked? Probably I need to just go back a million times and get to the bottom of this...

          1. re: maillard

            sorry to say but the only time I went there, not only were the fries super salty, the hamburger itself was so salty as to be inedible. I left half of it on the plate and was guzzling down water when the waitress came to take it away. No comment on it, just removed the plate and gave us the check. I haven't bothered to go back since.

        2. I like the fried chicken, although it is a huge amount of food and could certainly do without the sweet tea that comes with it. The sauces really highlight the chef's innovative use of "trashy" ingredients. However, usually when I end up there it is not a situation where I want to be saddled with a doggy bag for the rest of the evening. I typically end up with the burger (it is really tough to turn down), and personally have never found the fries to be particularly soggy. Don't know if it is still on the board, but last week's special "derrty south" burger, with pimento cheese sauce and collard greens, might have been even tastier than their standard burger option.

          On my last visit I managed to pass on the burger and went with the pork chop, which had a nice herbaceous marinade and was cooked perfectly, which is a difficult thing to achieve with a porterhouse chop. Some people might find it overly salty, but I tend to have a very salty palette. I also enjoy the steak frites, but maybe not enough to pay a premium over the burger. Have I mentioned how much I love that burger?

          The other thing I would note is that they consistently have one of the best and most creative specials boards in the city, and I have always had good luck going with whatever happens to be up there in chalk. I really wish some previous specials, such as the goat taquitos and the chili-spiced pork rinds, had found a place on their permanent menu.

          1. I can think of worse problems to have at a bar than food that's too salty. It's a problem easily solved at the tap or bottle.

            1. Fried Chicken is very good, but be prepared to leave thinking that you should have got the burger, which, as mentioned many times, is spectacular.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ScotchandSirloin

                I really like their fried chicken. The fries are too seasoned for my taste.

              2. When y'all refer to "the burger," are you talking about the lunch one or the dinner one?

                2 Replies
                1. re: FinnFPM

                  The dinner one. The lunch one is smaller and griddled, so doesn't have that medium rare goodness.

                  1. re: ScotchandSirloin

                    i found the dinner burger to be packed really tightly, too dense and hard for my tastes, compared to the lunch burger. The fries I've had there were not crispy at all, and really bland...maybe different cook those days

                2. i noticed this tuesday evening as well. super crunchy.

                  1. I stopped by for lunch today, in the name of science. I agree that the fries are crispier. The fries are more heavily-seasoned than you will find at your average place, but I'm confident that this is by design: they make you want a beer. If beer's not your thing, they go very well with some ketchup. They're great, as is everything else that is served there.

                    1. Has anyone ever gotten the dinner burger for lunch? Will they do that?

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: typhoonfish

                        I don't think they will do that. I had the lunch burger recently and it was excellent.

                        1. re: Gordough

                          Going for a business lunch on Thursday and I want the real deal.

                          1. re: typhoonfish

                            The lunch burger is the real deal. Arguably better than the dinner burger depending on your preferences.

                      2. Ate here last week, they took the pastrami off the menu before I could get in to try it (BOOOOO!!!!), so I had the burger instead. It's a great lunch burger, good size (I don't want a 1/2 of meat at lunch and go back to work....come to think of it, I NEVER want a giant burger, but that's my preference) and the fries were as sold above, thin, shoestring style, nice and salty and a good foil to the super juicy burger. I love it when meat juice and burger sauce soaks into the fries like a good steak frites, so so good.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: devilham

                          Just got back...yummmmm

                          I got the burger and added the second patty. (fat guy on a diet, don't try it)
                          The burger has some sort of rub on it that's delicious.

                          My only complaint on the fries was I got a plate of pieces of fries. The best part about the fries is you get the peppercorns at the bottom you can sop up with the fries.

                          A new top 5 burger for me.

                          Based on the fact there was 10 people in there for lunch, I hope they do a big dinner service or they won't be around forever.

                          1. re: typhoonfish

                            Awesome. I don't know why it is but I love burgers, even really big ones, but for some reason I never seem to like burgers with two separate patties.

                        2. Went for the first time last night. Off to an auspicious start, three couples entered virtually at the same time (we were 3rd). Two tables of two were open and Manager (older, white-haired gentleman) asked who was next. When the first two couples seated, Manager took our name and said that it would be 40 minutes because he had a waiting list. I asked him how that could be as the two other couples seemed to walk in right off the street with us? He said that they had not but had been out walking around....not sure why he would then ask all of us when we walked in, "who was next?" It was just a bit of an "odd" start. We were then showed into the back room and had a drink while we waited. Ended up being seated in about 20 minutes. After the initial contact, the service (bartender in back room and waitress) were excellent. Anyway, about the burgers and fries. The burger was superb, perfect size, nice meaty flavor, cooked a perfect medium and the crispy pickle slices and sautéed onions really made it a great burger! The fries, homemade, shoestring and crisp, also excellent. I wish the restaurant was more convenient but I was very impressed with the burger and fries. On another note, the bartender in the back room marked "Adults Only", informed us that in January, this room would turn into a second restaurant with its own menu. It will have approximately 17-18 seats and be an upscale steak restaurant. It's not really a separate restaurant but a separate room with its own menu and concept. Interesting.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: bakerboyz

                            I went last night for the first time as well. We got there at 7:30 and were told it would be an hour long wait. We stood at the bar and attempted to get the attention of a bartender - we were able to 16 minutes later, and then at minute 17, the manager offered us one of the two high tops near the bubble hockey table. Score!

                            My DC had the pork chop - it was succulent and delicious, but my fried chicken was a disappointment. It was burnt, salty and I wasn't a fan of the breading. The biscuit was not cooked though and the slaw looked like the pulp that you need after juicing a carrot. I should have gotten the burger. Oh well.


                          2. Ms 9 and I stopped in yesterday at lunch for burgers..which were great. Fries were terrific, good crisp.

                            BTW, I don't care for ketchup..just find it too sweet. They have a nice BBQ sace that went well with the burger and fries.

                            These guys just celebrated their 1 year birthday and are still cranking out great food and providing a great atmosphere and friendly servers.

                            Happy BDay!

                            1. Had the burger and fries today. Excellent flavor to the burger and balance of flavors with 80/20 Chuck, medium rare as ordered, pickle, cheddar and Russian dressing and a buttered toasted bun. Fries nicely crisp. Everything is a little salty but not excessively so. Good value for a downtown burger and not so humongous that I need to split it for decency's sake.

                              1. The fries and burger I had there the other day were (way) too heavily seasoned, even more so than normal. I woke up in the middle of the night and thought I was getting sick from a sore throat and being dried out. Turns out it was just the salt (and I have been told I have a heavy hand in my own kitchen). They really need to get more consistent with the seasoning which ranges from heavy to nearly inedible in my experiences. This is why I was curious if Bogey's comes out of the same kitchen.

                                The other thing I have found there it that you need to sit at the bar to get good service. While the entire staff is friendly, table servers can disappear for awhile.