Saturday, November 21, 2009

AJ's BBQ Pit-Closed

AJ's BBQ Pit
3691 E. 3rd. St
Los Angeles

A BBQ restaurant in East LA? Yes, in the land of great Mexican food, you have a BBQ restaurant!!! AJ's is about a block east of the Indiana Station of the new Gold Line Eastside extension. AJ's is easy to recognize because of the flames painted on the outside of the restaurant.

I went to AJ's earlier this week but they were out of ribs!!! Then last night I called and asked if they had ribs, they again were out of ribs. I asked are you going to have ribs tomorrow during lunch. She said yes. Then asked me my name, so they can give me a discount when I came. Well I called and asked if they had ribs. They said Yes. I asked if I got there in about an hour, will they still have ribs, they said yes. So I went.

I ordered the third rack of St. Louis pork spare ribs, $7.80 and 5 piece order of chicken wings, $3.90. Those prices are the regular menu price. I got the 15% discount because the nice lady offered it to me for my trouble. I did not at one time mention I was doing a review.

AJ's is Santa Maria style bbq, where the meats are cooked over oak wood. This isn't "true" BBQ but it is damn good if done right. Take a look at this picture, this is how they do Santa Maria BBQ.

The ribs were pretty good. Nice smoke flavor, tender, little to no fat. But the ribs were so small!!!! The pit master came out and even said sorry for the ribs being so small.

The wings were bigger than the pork ribs!! The chicken wings were about a medium spice level. There wasn't much of a crispy skin but the meat was tender and moist. Overall I did like the wings but I would prefer them to be a bit more crispy.

Service was very good. The lady's who gave me the discount on the phone was super nice. She didn't have to offer any discount but she went over and above. Her daughter was nice, friendly and helpful taking the order. The pitmaster was nice to come out and say sorry for the size of the ribs. He also mentioned they bought some more ribs and put them on the grill, as you can see from the above picture.

AJ's has been open for about six months. They need to work some kinks in their operation. I understand not wanting food to go to waste but ribs are a staple of any BBQ restaurant. They need to have ribs all the time. I wouldn't have any issues going back to AJ's but I would call first to make sure they have ribs.