BY TRONE DOWD
Jamaica’s Dallas BBQ is officially open for business, marking yet another drastic change for the emerging downtown Southeast Queens area.
The new restaurant is located on Parson’s Boulevard and 89th Avenue in the building that previously housed both CityRib Bar and Grill and the Moda Grill restaurant and bar, which closed in late 2016.
The restaurant is said to have employed 100 people from the community. Dallas BBQ is a family-run chain based out of New York City. Founded in 1936 by Carl and Grace Wetanson under the name “Grace’s Luncheonette” on 42nd Street, the family business is now 11 locations strong. Today, Dallas BBQ’s is run by three generations of Wetansons—Herb, Greg and Stuart.
“We’re excited to bring the employee owned and operated Dallas BBQ restaurant to Jamaica Queens,” Greg Wetanson told the Queens Tribune.
Wetanson said that the owners chose to bring business to Southeast Queens due to suggestions from customers at other locations.
“Many of our customers recommended that we look in the area because they were traveling a little far to get to another BBQ,” Dallas BBQ Director of Operations Eric Levine said. “We had an opportunity open up at this location. The community really welcomed us.”
The owners made it their mission to revitalize the long-troubled location.
The Parsons Boulevard location will mark the chain’s second Queens locale—the first opened at the Rego Center Mall in 2013. Last week, Community Board 12 district manager Yvonne Reddick said that the board was excited to see the new restaurant come to the neighborhood as it gives residents a new dining option. The Jamaica location will feature a sidewalk cafe for patrons to dine outside at some point in the near future.