Opening Day at Famous Dave’s Was Hit or Miss

I know I promised that I wouldn’t post about the newly opened Famous Dave’s BBQ ever again… but apparently Midtown lunchers are interested, because a bunch of you went on opening day.  A few reports came in, telling two very different stories:

Photo Courtesy of Tasty Eating

“I went to the grand opening of Famous Dave’s BBQ on 47th and 7th Avenue today at 1:30pm. First, it wasn’t very crowded at all. Not a good sign. Next, the waitress took forever. Even the water and soda took a good 10-15 minutes. The food took a little longer. I had the Regular Ribs (4 ribs St Louis style) and it comes with a corn bread muffin (just okay), corn on the cob (dry), and 2 sides: mac n cheese (nice spicy kick) and fries (mediocre). The ribs were meaty but the flavor wasn’t really there. I didn’t really detect any long smoking flavor. It all came from the sauce. I thought I could make the same at home. My dish was $13. In all cases, it was just mediocre. Even their famous cradle of 5 BBQ sauces were mediocre. I’d would actually rather walk a couple of avenues to reach Daisy May’s ribs. Oh and my companions got the brisket, beef tips, and chopped pork. All very mediocre. Oh well, what did I really expect? -Hungry”

Yeah, none of that is really a surprise. You knew they weren’t actually going to be able to smoke meat in that space on 47th and 7th. And it’s opening day, so complaints about service are kind of unfair.

A trio of Midtown Lunch’ing dudes seemed to enjoy it though, but the amount of money they spent on lunch is downright shocking.

“There seemed to be a reasonably good crowd for lunch today. The food was very good- even though they messed up our orders a bit (blame that on opening day jitters), they brought the correct items, free of charge. We got a free sample of their famous fries, which were good. 3 guys, $125 without tip, and we had enough food leftover (well, at least 2 of us did) to last 2 days. -Unfamous Dave”

$125!!!!!  For three people!  BEFORE TIP?  Are you freakin’ kidding me.  You could have been left with lunch for a week, and It wouldn’t be enough for me to spend that much money on a touristy BBQ place.  Please tell me you drank a ton of beer? Or got to sleep with your waitress (or waiter?)  Something!

Ok, now I’m serious.  This is the last time you will hear about Famous Dave’s BBQ on Midtown Lunch.  (If you are dying to read more, you can read a full report with photos on the first commenter’s blog “Tasty Eating”.


  • About the only thing that looks decent in that pic is the Mac and that’s only because it looks like generic KFC mac. Oh wait, that’s not a compliment, I take it back.

  • The Donkey Show, Zach. The $125 covered the Donkey Show. Only possible explanation.

  • something doesn’t add up w/r/t the $125 pre tip figure. xxl slabs are $22.99 — which includes 12 ribs. lunch size (4 ribs) is 12.99. both include corn, cornbread, 2 sides. . . . . assuming the 3 amigos got the xxl, that’s still only around $70 pre tip. Where’s the extra $55 come from?

  • Given that we were feeling particularly gluttonous, for the aforementioned $125, this is what we got:
    24 BBQ wings (very good)
    1 order onion rings (decent)
    free side order of fries (steak-cut, crispy, greaseless)
    1 order baby back ribs (w/ included side dishes of fries & green beans- incorrectly given wilbur beans as well)
    2 orders of the above, but with 1/2 rack of baby back & 1/2 rack of spareribs instead
    3 beers, 3 sodas

    Definitely more expensive than what we thought it’d be, but also a heck of a lot more food than we anticipated (we’re all big eaters, and 2 of us walked out of there like we’d just struck the Chinese per-pound buffet jackpot). No one is claiming it’s the best BBQ around, but we agreed it was better than Virgil’s.

  • @stan, I’ll tell you happened: They got robbed, that’s what happened.

  • One more thing- the posted calorie counts on the menus are very disturbing, so that lunch was our meal for the day, and probably the next few days as well.

  • really wayne, is that what donkey shows are going for these days? you figure with all those unemployeed wall street guys, the prices woulda came down a little bit. when there’s a glut of asses, shouldn’t the price drop?

  • I second the feeling about the calorie counts. That picture right there is over 1100 calories. It goes up according to what sides you pick.

  • Maybe they penalize you per calorie, ala the Paterson fat tax..

  • 1100 calories is nothing! NOthing I tell you! Based on a 2000 calorie diet, youcould eat that for lunch and dinner minus the corn and be ok! (I find corn on the cob useless so I’d toss it though fries are boring as well! Give me some baked beans dammnit!)

  • Wondering why they would voluntarily post calorie counts at a place like that where everything is highly caloric. Don’t you need 5 stores or more in NYC to require calorie posting?

    That can’t possibly be good for business. Stupid marketing.

  • The law is 15 stores nationally, you only need one in NY actually

  • Anything is better than Virgils…..i went there one time, and they didnt hvae any chicken or ribs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • @justin nevermind

  • I am really amused that ‘Famous Dave’s’ is suffering, big-time, down South (including here in Maryland) — where they send me weekly coupons and promotions BEGGING me to come in and spend my money on their digusting crap.

    When that doesn’t work here in the South, “Dave” (a corporation which has NOTHING to do with the original Indian who supposedly founded the place) moves into New Yawk City — a place where people will eat almost anything they can stick into their mouth.

    I love it.

    Bon Appetit!, New Yawk City

  • Chucky…he’s 300lbs….and YOU eat badly.


  • I would STILL rather see more articles on Famous Dave’s than ever see another mention of that abomination of a place fried kroket place on this site (which I will NOT even mention by name).

  • My dearest McBeagle:

    I am the picture of health, should that interest you. My wife (a physician) examines me regularly.

    I can afford to eat ANYTHING at all that I want. So I do. But I will NOT eat substandard BBQ like the kind served at NOT SO “Famous Daves.”

    Their BBQ sauce smacks of waste treatment effluent, by the way.

Leave a Reply

You must log in or register to post a comment.