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Sep 16, 2013 04:36 AM

More on BBQ

I was just made aware of the Philadelphia area locations of a national group of very successful BBQ restaurants; better said pits! Never been or even previously heard of them but here ya go! Any one tried them?

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  1. Wow. I had no idea they were in the area. I have eaten at a Dickey's once and it was pretty darned good. Much better than Famous Dave's... I'm not so sure it justifies a drive to Norriton though.

    5 Replies
    1. re: bluehensfan

      Remember, Dickey's is a franchise. A place will only be as good as its pit master. There is no formula to franchise in BBQ.

      1. re: bluehensfan

        My wife and I drove around the new Dickie's in Plymouth Meeting, and saw no evidence of wood let alone a smoker. We went to Zacharies a few miles into Norristown, and had our usual great 'cue. You could smell the smoke from the sidewalk.

        1. re: MainLiner

          First of all there are lots of different types of smokers (gas and electric) that allow you to impart a smokey taste without having to have piles of wood. That is to say you can use wood chips, for smoke flavor but not wood for the source of the actual heat. Looking online, Dickey's evidently recommends to its franchisees that they use southern pride smokers. So I do not think your search for piles of wood is necessarily a tell tale sign of whether they smoke on sight. Whether the quality of the bbq is the same, that certainly is debatable...

          1. re: cwdonald

            I am very familiar with the various means of commercial BBQ preparation including the Southern Pride products. I have seen their smokers gas-fired, but wood-burning. Personally, as long as I have a choice, a prefer to patronize establishment that burn wood on-premise, and where I can detect this readily. To each their own, but my personal preference is to eat a BBQ joints where I know a pitmaster is present, and for their meats to be cooked low-and-slow by traditional means. I am not denigrating a restaurant where I have not eaten, but again, even chains like Famous Dave's and Red Hot and Blue meet my personal criteria.

            1. re: MainLiner

              Can't wait til Jesse's in souderton opens tomorrow. /sniff. sundays and mondays there is no chance of getting his bbq because they are closed. They even have rockin' desserts!

      2. Normally, I would give any BBQ a try, but if they are not smoking on premises, it may as well be at an airport. BBQ does (in general) vacuum seal well. I do that with my own 'cue, but if I'm going out I expect it to be fresh made.

        1. I like Phamous Phil's out here in Evansburg (Germantown Pike between Collegeville and Fairview Village). He's won a few major awards.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Chefpaulo

            Are they open for lunch on weekends? I grew up in Fairview Village, and still get out there occasionally.

            1. re: MainLiner

              Yes, closed Monday
              Tue - Wed 11:00 AM - 8:00 PM
              Thu - Fri 11:00 AM - 9:00 PM
              Sat 8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
              Sun 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM

              Big smoker along side Germantown Pike. Been there once a good while ago. Having had only a couple of items and understanding the inconsistencies of BBQ; I will only say that on that day for those chosen items it was good enough.

              1. re: Bacchus101

                I've been to Phamous Phil's multiple times and have had most of their menu. BBQ preferences are a personal thing, but I can't say that I was very excited by what I tried and I haven't bothered to go back since despite working nearby. Certainly not worth driving out of one's way for. Jessie's is much better in the area (although I still find their over-priced micro-sides mystifying).

                1. re: PhillyBestBYOB

                  For me Philly it depends on which sides you order at Jesse's. My friend keeps ordering the collard greens and not eating them. We never finish our food at Jesse's and always get to go boxes so recently I got an inspiration and made some mashed potatoes to go with the collards and advised him to try the loaded fork technique and put half mashed and half collards on his fork. He loved them that way. I love me some collards and I like the slaw but those sides are big enough for me. Baked beans and red cabbage too.
                  Now the garlic mashed is another story. They only seem to have them on fridays but next time I go on friday I will get two orders of mashed and one of collards. And since the tiny squares of corn bread count as a side I'd have to order that too. If the corn bread doesn't just come with I think the squares should be larger. I always take pity on my friend (not John) and give him a bit of my corn bread after he polishes his off. I should probably encourage him to just get two slices when he orders. .
                  I guess I'm so grateful for Jesses that I jget what I want and smile and hand over my money happily. I still miss Barbecue USA and Smoke Daddy's so I'm gathering rosebuds while I may. Err Bbq.

          2. I've been to the Dickey's in Dover. I thought it was just fine. Way better than Famous Dave's or Sonny's. Good for a chain.

            1 Reply
            1. re: sal_acid

              To be better than Sonny's is not too high a bar to beat.

            2. On a less contentious note: all this chat about BBQ had me take a drive to Phamous Phil's in Evansburg on Germantown Pike west just before Collegeville for a second try on the comment by CP. "Closed for a food show!",Monday thru Thursday. The small parking lot had trucks, tents and cameras. Well seems we might have a local TV BBQ celeb among us. Not to be denied a BBQ I set my GPS for Dickeys in Royersford. I will only say this, the free cone of soft serve was refreshing!

              4 Replies
              1. re: Bacchus101

                LOL... So what DID you order? BTW, I don't think I mentioned this, but Zachary's always offers customers (especially new ones) the opportunity to taste anything (without a bone) before ordering. I always do this before, and if the brisket were dry (which I have not so far experienced) I would just order something else. I think this policy is more than reasonable.

                1. re: MainLiner

                  Ordered their top of the line Pork Ribs and beans. Tossed most of the ribs and half the beans. If you go just pick up the free pickle and soft serve. The price for them is right!

                2. re: Bacchus101

                  I drove by today and they were actively filming (still an applicable term in the digital age?) in the back. Lots going on.
                  Phil has won many awards and now makes and bottles his own sauces. Stay tuned to see wee Evansburg put on the map.

                  1. re: Bacchus101

                    can't wait to hear what that's all about!