Restaurant review Claim Jumper, 9/30/07
Sunday evening I asked my son and daughter if they wanted to go out to eat. My daughter was not hungry but my son wanted to go to the Brea Claim Jumper. He loves the nachos, a dish of French fries with a couple of cheeses melted into them with bacon bits I believe. I had fallen in love with their baby back ribs. I called the restaurant before leaving the house and was told they had a 20-minute wait. When we arrived we were seated right away. A large number of people were leaving when we arrived. We got a booth and my son and I broke out our lap top computers to do some web site learning. I did order the baby back ribs with a sweet potato. When the dish arrived I got asparagus and had the dish returned. In a few minutes I got what I ordered but the ribs were dry, tough and way off flavor. My son was happy with his usual dish. The waitress came over to find out if I liked the meal and I confessed that I was disappointed. She said she would call the manager over but I declined her offer. She did not listen to me and the manager did come over in a while to talk about the ribs. He immediately spotted that the ribs I had looked dry. I showed him how tough they were by trying to cut into them with a knife and I had a struggle. He offered to give me another rack and he would personally pick it out himself. He came back to tell me how they cook the rib. They slow cook them with seasoning only applied in an oven at 225 degrees for 6 hours. During this slow cooking process the fat drips off the ribs. They then put the ribs into cold storage until they are needed. The ribs are pulled out and cooked again but now with barbecue sauce and brought up to serving temperature. I am not sure I got this process accurate but I was very interested in the temperature they used and how long they cooked the ribs. The manager told me that some places raise the temperature up above 300 degrees and do not cook the ribs as long but they found that the lower temperature and longer cooking time worked out very well. I have the Big Green Egg at home and I think I will slow cook some ribs for 6 hours to see if I can duplicate Claim Jumper’s results of the meat practically falling off the bone. The Big Green Egg can easily be lowered to this temperature.
There are about 8 managers at this Claim Jumper.