We told you guys about JJ’s Red Hots Opening on East Blvd a couple months ago… well now its July and they are almost ready to open their doors to the public. We got pre-grand opening access to Charlotte’s soon to be “Best place to get a hot dog” and were pretty impressed :)
With a menu featuring eight unique chargrilled smokehouse hot dogs from Sahlen’s Packing Company in Buffalo, New York it quickly became a daunting task trying to decide what we were going to try first.
I figured if the first thing on the menu is named after the restaurant itself.. I’d be doing the world a disservice by not checking it out. So we ordered a JJ’s “No.1″ Red Hot Hot Dog, the Chicken and Herb Sausage, and the Andouille Sausage Sliders.
The rest of the menu was being passed out by waiters in sample size portions like these cute shot glass size servings of the home-made lemonade and orangeade. Both of which were freaking delicious… but I’d have to say the lemonade was a little more “lemon” and a little less “ade”. I love my lemonade sour but even this stuff was enough to make my face pucker up like nothing else.
After a couple minutes our order showed up and we started digging right in.
The Chicken and Herb Sausage was very well received at our table and ended up being a favorite of the night. The sausage was cooked to perfection and the toppings were piled high.
As for the JJ’s “No.1″ Red Hot Hot Dog.. it was good. I guess I didn’t realize that the Webers Mustart they use is a horseradish type mustard and not anywhere like the typical French’s yellow mustard I’m use too.
The first bite sent my nose into hyper drive and my brain scrambling to figure out what had just happened. I cant fault the hot dog for the mustard.. theres plenty of people that love horseradish, I’m just not one of them.
Without the mustard the hot dog was amazing. The smokehouse hot dogs from Sahlen’s were chargrilled, juicy, plump, and full of flavor. I ended up taking a sample of the chili that was being passed out and made my hot dog into a chili dog… which made me forget all about the horseradish mustard incident.
The Andouille Sausage Sliders were also on our favorites list for the night.
It came out piled high with andouille sausage, creamy cole slaw, on toasted Martins bun and except for being a little on the messy side was perfect.
Throughout the night we got small samples of all sorts of menu items… this was one of the chili’s they offer. This one was kinda sweet, not spicy at all, and perfect for a hot dog topping.
The onion rings had a mixed reaction at our table. We couldn’t decide if the batter needed a new recipe… or if they just needed some ranch to dip them in. The texture was right on point but we couldn’t shake an awkward taste after every bite.
This was another chili sample that was a polar opposite to the last chili. This one was the perfect chili for eating out of a bowl with a pile of crackers on a freezing winter day. It was a little on the spicy side and was very hearty despite the tiny sample size.
JJ’s Red Hots also has hand spun milk shakes in four different flavors. We tried the mocha (which was delicious), the vanilla (which was a little on the boring side), and the strawberry (which needed just a little more strawberry).
But for the most part they were all delicious and well worth checking out.. .especially if the whether stays above 100 degree’s like it is right now.
No evening is complete without the dessert round and we got to sample a couple tasty treats before we left. The first was the “lunchbox” apple pie… which we didn’t like at all. We couldn’t pin point the problem but it was just a lack of sweetness and an abundance of something that left an awful aftertaste.
But.. then there was some sort of peanut butter and chocolate dessert made by angles. Well I guess not really, but it tasted as good as heaven sounds and we cant think of any other way to describe them.
JJ’s Red Hots will be open for 4th of July and if all goes well they will become a staple of the Dilworth restaurant scene. Charlotte is in desperate need of more restaurants serving up incredible food, at a great price, for the average person and JJ’s Red Hots hits that mark.
In a neighborhood over taken by platinum cards, vip parking, and fancy dining… JJ’s Red Hots is a much needed breath of fresh air and hopefully a huge success :)