Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Deep Run Roadhouse

12377 Gayton Road
Henrico, VA

                Recently opened by Alamo BBQ’s former owner, Deep Run Roadhouse offers up all of the same great bbq as Alamo and then some but it lacks the charm and atmosphere that really made me fall in love with Alamo BBQ.
                Located in the far west end of Richmond near Shortpump, Deep Run Roadhouse is housed in a dinky old nondescript shopping center hidden amongst large subdivisions and across the street from what is probably the most ghetto area in Shortpump. Inside, the restaurant could be any other “fancy” bbq restaurant.  One wall inside is a huge chalkboard with the menu written on it and on the other wall is a large cashiers counter where you place your order.  Just like Alamo, the menu is Tex-mex BBQ with a variety of smoked meats, which can be served as tacos, burritos, sandwiches and just by themselves. The only additional Items on the menu that I noticed were potato wedges, pork chops and burgers. The rest of the menu is identical to Alamo’s. 
                I ordered a fish taco and a fajita burrito with smoked rope sausage and both items were fantastic.  The fish was flaky and topped with their incredible southwest slaw. It very well may be the best fish taco in Richmond. The burrito was loaded with smoky rope sausage, rice, beans, cheese, grilled onions and peppers.  With a little bbq sauce the burrito blew.  The food was perfection.
                The décor and the atmosphere was nice and very subdued but it really lacked the personality that makes Alamo BBQ what it is. It seemed a little stuffy for a place that calls itself a “Roadhouse” but to be fair they are catering to the high end Shortpump crowd while Alamo generally feeds the grungy Church Hill Hipsters. ..
                In the end, the only thing that really matters is the food and the food at Deep Run Roadhouse is outstanding!

Jimmy’s Grille

16 Goodrich Ave.
Petersburg, VA 23805

In the Walnut Hill area of Petersburg off of South Crater Road hides Jimmy’s Grille, a “high end” diner that you would never see unless you know where it is or if you get lost. Jimmy’s Grille is actually a Petersburg tradition that has been around for tears but has stayed hidden in plain sight. 

Jimmy’s Grille is smartly decorated with well painted walls and stylish pictures and furnishing but do not let the looks deceive you because at its heart Jimmy’s is a dinner, it just has a little bit of lipstick on.  Jimmy’s menu is what gives it away, from hot dogs all the way to grilled cheese sandwiches and burgers, it serves classic dinner food in a classy way. The menu reads like Andrew’s Grill or Quick lunch but the décor is more like Longstreet’s and Croaker’s Spot. 

I ordered the dinner classic two hot dogs all the way with slaw. This included chili, onions and mustard topped with sweet and creamy cole slaw.  It is almost impossible to beat a well done slaw dog and Jimmy’s does it just about as good as anybody.  The hot dogs were plump, juicy and just a little bit burned, topped with meaty chili, fresh onions and classic yellow mustard, the flavors danced harmoniously across my palette with no one flavor taking the lead. 

I can’t say that Jimmy’s is any better or any worse than the other handful of little dinners in the tri-cities, it’s just different.  But I can say that if you are in the mood for classic dinner food but want to enjoy it in an actual restaurant atmosphere, with a waitress and without the heat and sound of a flat top then Jimmy’s Grille is the place the place to go.