SAW’S Juke Joint — Crestline

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Few things are paired well with great barbeque – a big family gathering, a street party, a milestone event. And among these has to be the coupling with great music! The opening of SAW’s third location pairs the down home tradition of authentic barbeque with live bluesy jazz, a feast for the soul, the ears and the palate! And if such an oxymoron exists as “upscale dive”, SAW’S Juke Joint fits the bill.

Since its debut in October of 2012, SAW’S Juke Joint has been packed practically every night! Yes, even middle of the week. Just driving past its location on Dunston Avenue, you’ll see the whole Crestline Park shopping center parked with cars, and spilling out down the street.

The atmosphere at SAW’S Juke Joint is all about casual and friendly. Reclaimed wood paneling, bare bulbs and metal tables and chairs suitably make for a slightly industrial feel. But after all, this place means business – food and music.

Since re-opening this establishment, in the space formerly occupied by Ore and Open Door Café, the new restaurant built on the patronage of the former restaurant, but brings in live music from regional bands on the weekend nights. Best of all, it features the well-known barbeque menu from both the SAW’s BBQ Restaurant and its sister, SAW’S Soul Kitchen.

SAW’S ownership has a pedigree that has made a barbeque/jazz setting a surefire hit. The founder of the “SAW” brand is “Sorry ASS Mike Wilson”. His partner in their SAW’S Soul Kitchen Brandon Cain is on board. And thirdly, in Saw’s Juke Joint, it’s Wilson, Doug Smith, and American Idol winner and local celebrity Taylor Hicks.

In Hicks words, “ I think the concept fits the area perfectly. We all know Saw’s has the best barbeque in town, and the juke joint concept is a home run!”

The three have combined their love and knowledge of Southern cuisine, live jazz music and laid-back hangouts … and have a winner!

Of the three SAW’s locations, Doug Smith says this was the easiest one to renovate and make their own. It had been a fine dining restaurant so the layout was ideal. Doug Smith is no stranger to this part of town; he owned Otey’s in nearby Crestline Village at one point, and he owned Smith’s Oysters & Steaks.

If reputation and return customers measure the success of the SAW’S brand, than all three will have long histories in Birmingham. The reviews keep coming in and the food scores high on all accounts. And in Smith’s words, “I think everyone feels comfortable here, no matter what the occasion”

They serve barbecue with Alabama’s signature white sauce—made with mayo—and a baked potato stuffed with pork, which the Alabama Tourism Department proclaimed as one of the top 100 dishes in the state to try before you die.

Mental Floss

FIND US

Location

Saw’s Juke Joint
1115 Dunston Ave
Birmingham, AL 35213

Our Hours
Open for dine in and  carry-out

MON-SAT 11am-9pm
SUN 11am-3pm

CATERING

PHOTOS

REVIEWS

Danny M.
Danny M.
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This was hands down the best fried chicken sandwich I've ever had. I got the Colonel which had sweet tea brined fried chicken, pimento cheese, pickles and white BBQ sauce. To be fair, you can probably brine in sweet tea and put pimento cheese on top and I'd be a tasty treat, but they do it right. It's not a place you can linger too long in the restaurant (outside is different). Eat. Eat again. Miss eating. Leave.
Thomas B.
Thomas B.
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Excellent BBQ. I would have even tried the fresh pork rinds if i had room in my belly.
Charles W.
Charles W.
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Best Barbecue in Birmingham! Went to Saw's with a friend over the holidays. These restaurants are the best places for barbecue in town, bar none. The sides are great too!
Matt M.
Matt M.
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My wife and I were driving home to Lexington, KY from the Gulf Shores. After a week of mostly seafood, some good, some not so much. I wanted to have some authentic Alabama bbq. We ended up finding this place. I had the pulled smoked chicken with a couple deviled eggs, both excellent. My wife had a fried chicken sandwich that was marinated in sweet tea and pickle juice topped with slaw, pickles, and Alabama style white sauce. It was sweet and spicy and to die for! Chick filet sprinkled with crack! I’ll stop any time I drive by.
Tunalic
Tunalic
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Their food makes me want to get fat... oh yeah, I'm already fat. This place is awesome. Saw's has four locations and every time I eat here I'm reminded that it's the best. Their burgers, bbq, wings (especially) and sides are magnificent. Keep in mind that it's tiny so seating can be a little hard and the line can get rather long at lunches. Put this food in your mouth and smile while munching!
Darrius A.
Darrius A.
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I never have a bad meal here. They have some of the best sandwiches here and they seem to be underrated by patrons. I always go for the sweet tea chicken and it always leave me satisfied. Now when you come here, expect a wait and if you manage to get a seat inside this little quaint restaurant, consider yourself lucky as there's limited seating inside. Otherwise, you'll be sitting outside. A lot of people don't know this but they have the coveted nugget ice. If you don't know what that is, it's the soft small pellet ice you see in most hospitals. I know you ice eaters will love that. They have your usual come products and teas, nothing fancy. They have napkins, signature BBQ sauce, and other basic condiments along with the extra absorbent blue paper towels to soak up sauce and drippings. The staff is friendly and hard-working and they make sure you're taken care of.
Mei Y.
Mei Y.
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THE WINGS. Just get them. You'll get to try both the red sauce and the white sauce in one dish. One delicious smokey mashup goodness. We also got the sweet tea fried chicken sandwich. My man was also raving about the white bbq sauce, which came on the sandwich. I loved that I got to try both sauces (and they compliment each other very well), but that white sauce is an Alabama special that you'll likely not find outside the state. Ambience wise, the joint is an adorable hole in the wall with friendly service. You order at the counter and pick a seat from one of the few tables.
Bobby J.
Bobby J.
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Food was very good. Unique style with their wings and smoked meats. Cozy dining area with additional seating outside. Staff was very polite and accommodating.
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