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Venue Review: Jim 'N Nick's Bar-B-Q

Jim 'N Nick's is worth busting your budget for
(no rating)
Jim 'N Nick's Bar-B-Q
By "Robin Hall Domeier"
The Charlotte Observer

13840 Steele Creek Road

More info about restaurant

I've spent a little time in restaurant bars. You never know what people want to talk about.

But not until I went to Jim 'N Nick's Bar-B-Q have I had people carry on conversations about their favorite things on the menu. After overhearing me tell the server I had never eaten at the Steele Creek-area restaurant, the guy on my left said, "Everything is good, but you gotta make sure you get the cheddar muffins."

Then the guy on my right said, "You have to order the collard greens and the macaroni and cheese. If you don't like them, I'll pay."

It turns out they were both spot-on with their recommendations. And my pick: the Double Decker brisket and pork sandwich as well.

Jim 'N Nick's is a chain out of Birmingham, Ala. The Charlotte location, owned by Troy and Jenne Taylor, celebrates its second anniversary in June. The dining room is sizable and cozy at the same time.

Jim 'N Nick's smokes its own meat, so the air inside the building is heavy with the smell of hickory. It's quite intoxicating, which is why I think I broke one of my cardinal dining out rules: Don't order a drink other than water.

When the server asked if I wanted to try the fresh-squeezed lemonade, I said yes without thinking. The lemonade was $3, but went perfectly with the food and was worth every penny.

To really enjoy the Double Decker sandwich, use every bit of the spicy barbecue sauce that comes alongside. Otherwise, the generous portion of pulled pork and chopped brisket can be a little dry.

Jim 'N Nick's chicken, with its peppery skin, was succulent, and needed no additional sauce.

Ribs come three ways (riblets, spare and baby back) and in three sizes (four bone, half and full rack). I opted for the four-bone spareribs, which had a lovely caramelized exterior and had been lightly brushed with a sticky-sweet barbecue sauce. The meat wasn't exactly fall-off-the-bone tender, but it didn't take much effort to pull it away either.

From the surprisingly sweet cheddar muffins, to the buttery collards with nuggets of ham to the cinnamon-laced apples, Jim 'N Nick does sides well. Do try the macaroni and cheese with its stretchy crust of cheddar on top of creamy noodles. The pork-studded baked beans also don't slack.

I busted my $25 for two budget by a mile - mainly because I couldn't control myself. But I'd do it all over again.

Reviews & Comments
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(no rating) April 14, 2010 - The Charlotte Observer - Robin Hall Domeier

I've spent a little time in restaurant bars. You never know what people want to talk about. But not until I went to Jim 'N Nick's Bar-B-Q have I had people carry on conversations about their favorite things on the menu.

(Full review)
Apr 15, 2010 - ahvorder
Great for Catering & Events

We use Jim & Nick's catering for 25 out-of-town guests about twice a month, and the catered spread is fantastic. The price for the value is great compared to other catering, and our guests rave about the Southern BBQ. We've also held large group events at the Steele Creek restaurant and the staff were warm and friendly for a group of 100 ppl!

(no rating) Apr 15, 2010 - DrHorrible

I went last year and found it overpriced and overly greasy. The bread seemed to have a coating of grease. Even the table, chairs, and floor seemed greasy. Yeah, it's barbecue, but still. I could have caught them on a bad day, though, I suppose.

Apr 15, 2010 - tomburger

It's Bar-B-Q. Jim 'N Nicks is overpriced. Mac's Speed Shop at Sandy Porter and S. Tryon is better Q at a better price.

Apr 14, 2010 - AllisonPalmer
Say no more:

"Jim 'N Nick's is a chain out of Birmingham, Alabama".

Accordingly it's chain food, accordingly it's trash. Probably no better than that garbage Bill Spoon's has been putting on plates to unsuspecting idiots for decades.

Apr 14, 2010 - e11studios
Best BBQ In Town

I had often visited a different BBQ restaurant in town and had no reason to try Jim N Nicks. Once I tasted Jim N Nicks...I was hooked. It's the best BBQ in town.

(no rating) Apr 14, 2010 - jumpinjackflash
Looks yummy!

My mouth is watering and I can't wait to try this place!

Apr 14, 2010 - jmb
Love the cheddar muffins, poor service

I do love the cheddar muffins at Jim 'N Nick's. They are to die for. Last time I was there, I even ordered a 1/2 dozen to go. The food is good, but I find it a little overpriced. I have been there 3 times, and the service has been seriously slow. The last time we were there, I think we waited 45 minutes for our food, and the restaurant was not even 1/2 full. I prefer Mac's Speed Shop just down the street. Their food is excellent, the beans are AMAZING. Everything there is amazing, and the service beats Jim 'N Nick's hands down every time.
It would be interesting to see a side by side comparison.

(no rating) Apr 14, 2010 - midwestern_roots

I went to Jim & Nick's in Charleston and the cheddar biscuts are UNREAL as were the catfish tacos! Now knowing there's one in Charlotte, I will definitely visit.

Apr 14, 2010 - dr_know
I just had to see if it was the Birmingham BBQ place.

OK, I have to go here.

Jim & Nicks has been one of my
favorite BBQ places in Birmingham
for years.

For me, it's the Baked Beans that
hit the spot.

Everything else I've had there is good (at least in Bham locations)


Update. I went there. Average.

Very disappointed in baked beans.

Went back to B'ham and tried the original which was better.

They aren't even following the same recipe for the beans.

Even though the layout of the restaurant is identical.

(no rating) Apr 14, 2010 - pleisenring
Try the Karl's cat fish

The Karl's catfish is the best fish sandwich I have found in the Charlotte area bar none!

Apr 14, 2010 - jake22
Great Fundraiser

We did one last year @ Olympic HS with Jim & Nicks. After they sampled the food, most in my office wanted directions to Jim & Nicks.

Apr 14, 2010 - clericm62
Jim and Nicks The best

Of course there would be a "professional" on here that would complain about over cooking... For the normal person, Jim and Nicks is the best barbeque I have eaten in the Charlotte Area. I would eat here every day if I could. I even brought relatives from Norway and they loved it! As someone who has eaten at bbq places all over the country and food in more countries then I care to count, I would come to Jim and Nick's anytime my wife says she wants to, which is a rare feat for me... KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!

(no rating) Apr 14, 2010 - danstat
I love Taco Tuesday at Jim 'N Nick's!

It's good food for a chain. You've got to go on Taco Tuesday. And try the chocolate pie!

(no rating) Apr 14, 2010 - ShooterVegas
Fall off bone tender is overcooked!

To the original reviewer, when the meat from ribs is falling off the bone they are overcooked. They should pull away from the bone but still leave a bite mark when you eat them. Those are perfectly cooked so if you said the meat pulled away easily they are cooked properly. Fall off the bone is ovecooked but most places serve ribs that way so the uninformed public assume that is the correct way to cook them and its not.

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