Friday, June 28, 2013

FAMOUS DAVE'S BBQ IN GILROY...WHY NOT EAT AT A CHAIN WHEN YOUR AT AN OUTLET MALL?

The SO said, "hey let's go to Gilroy to hit some outlets." "Uhh...okay," I say dubiously, since shopping is not something he usually wants to do. There are worse ways to kill a lazy Saturday. Once we get there we are both hungry. Normally when I've been here I've hit up the Black Bear Diner  but thought we should try something different so I Google Gilroy restaurants up on the phone and it's chain, chain and more chain. Since we were in the burbs we decided to just pick one and go native, as it were. One name I'm not familiar about pops up, Famous Dave's BBQ. That sounds promising as I'm always up to find some halfway decent barbecue here in California.

Walking in, the place is packed for 2:30 in the afternoon on a Saturday. There are several large families waiting for tables and based on personal experience I can tell by the look in the hostesses eyes they are way understaffed today. I ask if it's just okay if we sit at the bar and she smiles a bit of a relief and says it's fine. Bellying up the bar we dive into the BIG menu and are soon greeted by the bartender who also looks harried and is at least 7 months pregnant. Ahh...makes me feel like I'm back in the South...home. Gazing at the appetizers we decide to get something deep fried and the onion strings looks perfect.




What can you say about deep fried onions? They were hot, fresh and crispy out of the deep fryer...and not too greasy either. They came with a side of remoulade sauce, which is basically a spicy thousand island kind of thing. I think we scarfed this up in record time and yes we could have eaten several baskets, funny how these places can push one into gluttony. Oh well, let's strap on the feed bag and get our entrees. Just to try some variety I got the two meat platter...


...pulled pork, fried catfish, corn on the cob, spicy mac and cheese and a corn muffin. The pork was okay, it was a little room temperature and the sauce (which should have been on the side) was too sweet. The meat at least was tender, moderately juicy and had a nice hint of smoke flavor. Though the portion was a bit on the small side, considering the kind of place we were at. The catfish was done in strips with a panko breading and deep fried. It had a weird fishy taste though, yes catfish is an odd fish anyway but this was a little off. I used the remoulade sauce to mask the taste which helped but it was still odd. The corn was cooked perfectly and I slathered it in butter just like a summer picnic. The mac and cheese had corn and jalapeƱos and was a bit too spicy and not much else. The corn muffin was decent and warm, allowing my copious amounts of butter to melt into it, so I'll give them props for that. Eh, all in all for chain food it was about what you'd expect, Dave may be famous, but that might be because he has so many locations. 

Some things to note, I could tell they really were shorthanded as it took some time to get our food, our drinks, refills, butter and the check. The 9 months pregnant bartender was doing her best as the bar did fill up, my criticism would be with the guy who looked like an assistant manager who just seemed to be wandering around looking at everything but not really helping much. I really wanted to yell at him--"dude can you at least refill my iced tea?!" But I didn't. If nothing else I would come back for some onion strings and possibly the corn on the cob, the rest, eh, I could take or leave it. I did tip our bartender well though, I mean c'mon, she was like 12 months pregnant and still slinging drinks and food!


Famous Dave's on Urbanspoon

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