Originally an airfield from the 1920s to 1951 servicing aviators like Amelia Earhart, Charles Lindberg, Air Service trainees during World War I, commercial aircraft and the Army and Navy pilots during World War II, the Roosevelt Field was closed and developed as a mall by William Zeckendorf in 1955.
Today, the East Garden City Roosevelt Field Mall is the second largest shopping mall in New York, thanks to the addition of a new 100,000 square foot expansion with a creation of a Dining District, which features the newly opened Brother Jimmy’s BBQ.
With the introduction of the gastronomic heritage of the south to New York, Brother Jimmy’s recipes are inspirations rather than scripts. The company’s menus and kitchen operations are orchestrated by Corporate Executive Chef Eva Pesantez.
AT THE MALL
The family owned Brother Jimmy’s, a franchise of the Dining Entertainment Group, the parent company of Brother Jimmy’s, adopted the fast, casual concept at the Long Island Roosevelt Field Mall. It’s the only facility in the Mall’s Dining District that has a private dining section and a Wine and Beer license. Guests order at the counter and sit at the bar or seat themselves.
WE CAME, SAW AND ATE
Colleagues and I had the pleasure of more-than sampling the legendary Carolina “slow-smokin’” BBQ fare, some items of which have been passed down for generations.
The pork shoulder was rubbed with seasonings and cooked slowly in the visual smoker. The result was succulent, moist (not greasy) shreds, characteristic of true Carolina pulled pork. Similar to the pulled pork was the antibiotic-free pulled chicken — shreds of tender dark meat that was served with the Brother Jimmy’s original BBQ sauce. Both heaping platters are $12 each.
The antibiotic free slow-smoked turkey breast ($13) was sweet, tender and lean – perfect prescriptions for calorie counters and from cardiologists.
The spice-rub of the antibiotic free smoked half chicken imbued the breast and thigh with a slight piquant flavor, making the platter ($12) a delight for those who prefer chicken with (or without) the skin.
The piece de resistance for me were the incredibly lean spare ribs ($12). Smoked for four- to- five hours the sweet heat added just the right touch to the full-flavored juicy ribs.
Collard greens are not my favorite vegetable generally, but Brother Jimmy’s were cooked to perfection and served in their own juice as a side dish to platters. Other tasty side dishes on the menu included divine candied yams, corn bread and mac & cheese.
The 30-seat dining room, 10-seat bar is open 11 am to 8 pm on Monday to Saturday, 11 am to 7 pm on Sunday. The average prices are $4.00 to $8.00 for appetizers, $9.00 and up for entrees. Four beers are on tap and 12 beers are available by the bottle. Six wine options are available as well.
EXPANDING WITH PRODUCTS
Brother Jimmy’s has continued to grow with the opening at the Roosevelt Field Mall and expanding the brand through a large line of merchandise, available at each location and an online store. The merchandise includes over 20 styles of mens’ and womens’ t-shirts, hoodies and hats. The line offers its own condiments for purchase as well.
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