Jimmy’s Bar & Grill
J has been really good about not going crazy and buying baby clothes, but those days are quickly coming to an end. For a couple weeks now, she’s been wanting to go to Lighthouse Place in Michigan City to see what we can find….not only for the baby she’s carrying, but also for ourselves.
The Michigan City/New Buffalo area has always been a good halfway point to meet my family. Every few months, we’ll meet for lunch then either go shopping or go our separate ways. My parents will go to one of the two casino’s and J and I will head back to Kalamazoo.
Since J and I were going to Michigan City anyway, I called my mom and see if she wanted to meet us. My mom and my aunt decided to come, but my dad already had plans. As an added bonus, my brother made a last minute decision to tag along with his family, so we also got to hang with my two nieces for the day.
I told my mom to meet us in New Buffalo for lunch then we’d head back to Michigan City to shop. We always pass Jimmy’s Bar & Grill on the way to The Stray Dog which is where we usually meet at. I finally looked Jimmy’s up and it looked good to me so that’s where we met.
Jimmy’s Bar & Grill is on LaPorte Road just south of the New Buffalo city limits. It’s in a small strip mall, but as the menu says, “It’s not what you’d expect in a strip mall.”
From the outside, it is what you’d expect. There’s a small covered patio just to the north of the entrance and the parking lot is a large, street facing surface lot.
Once you walk inside though, you get a much different feeling. Right inside the door is a large waterfall wall that both of my nieces (ages 3 and 15 months) were immediately drawn to. The ceiling had small lights to simulate stars…another feature that distracted the two small girls.
We were the only ones in the restaurant when we walked in just before noon on a Saturday. Being a bar, you’d expect it to be a sports bar, but there were no TV’s anywhere in sight. Jimmy’s leans more towards the upscale side of bars with solid wood, dark furniture, leather bound menus, and the thick, cloth-like napkins.
The hostess set us up at a large table in a corner near the kitchen. My youngest niece had a high chair waiting for her while the older is a big girl and sat in a chair next to me. Our waitress worked on drinks first. They have Pepsi products which made me happy. Older niece asked for a glass of water with lemon because the lemon “makes it fresh.” After our drinks were brought out, younger niece got jealous of her older sister because she had a plastic cup with a straw in. Our waitress realized this and went back to get the younger niece a cup with water as well.
The menu has everything from burgers to steak to pizza. There was easily something for everyone. I was very, very tempted by a burger called The Heart Attack. In fact, everyone just assumed I was going to order it. I decided not to shorten my life anymore than necessary and just ordered the The Bleu Cheese Burger. The burgers are 8 oz. Angus beef burgers char-broiled and served on a brioche bun. The burger I chose had a large pile of crumbled bleu cheese on top and for an extra buck, I added on bacon. The burger was deliciously juicy and the bun had a pretty good char on it as well. The bacon was very crispy and the mound of bleu cheese was pretty good size mound.
J ordered the Turkey Bacon Club. This was a huge sandwich with roasted turkey, crisp bacon, American cheese, mayo, lettuce, and tomato on white bread. The massive sandwich was way too much for her, but she brought the rest home for lunch…and this time, we actually remembered the to-go box before we walked out of the restaurant.
Both my aunt and sister-in-law ordered The BBQ Burger. Like mine, it was an 8 oz. char broiled Angus beef patty on a brioche bun. The burger came topped with the house BBQ sauce, ham, cheddar cheese, and onion peels. My aunt loaded hers up with the lettuce and tomato that came on the plate and she ended up with a sandwich about six inches tall. She really had to smash down the onion peels in order to get it in her mouth. Both of them seemed to really like it.
My mom ordered the Buffalo Chicken Wrap. As you would expect, it is a LaWash flatbread wrapped around boneless chicken bites that are covered in a buffalo sauce, lettuce, tomato, cheddar jack cheese, and ranch dressing.
My brother was leaning towards the Bleu Cheese Burger, but he must have thought the kitchen could only make one per table or something. Instead, he got the Italian Grinder. This large sandwich starts with a French roll that is then stuffed with salami, capicola, pepperoni, lettuce, tomato, onion, pepperoncini’s, mozzarella cheese, balsamic vinegar, and oil. It’s served either hot or cold and he opted for hot. The sandwich looked delicious to me and I think he was happy with not going with the burger.
The surprising part of the meal was what my oldest niece ordered. They do have a pretty good kids menu and this stuff isn’t just cheap, GFS fare. When we ordered, she said she wanted chicken, so she got the Chicken Bites. It comes with either fries or applesauce. SIL asked for both becaues older niece would eat the apple sauce and younger niece would eat the fries. Just like with the water, younger niece wanted what her older sister was eating. After a few minutes of trying to distract her, we just asked for more applesauce so each girl could have one. Older niece went to town on the apple sauce, but when I asked her why she wasn’t eating the chicken, she said she wanted Mac and Cheese. That was fine with me because I wanted the chicken. This stuff was really good. It was chunks of white meat chicken and deep fried to a dark golden brown. With kids, they could get away with cheap chicken strips, but they choose to put a good product out there…even for the youngest diners. We did end up getting her to eat some of the chicken, but I think I actually ate more. Just don’t tell her parents.
All of our sandwiches came with bottleneck fries. These are a little hard to explain, but they were so very good. They are sort of wedge cut beer battered fries that are very crispy. Everyone was fan including youngest niece who ate them in addition to her applesauce.
The bill for six adults and two kids was right around $75 and everyone left happy. I was happy the place was kid friendly because they’re the type of restaurant that doesn’t have to be. I was already looking forward to eating there before I knew my brother’s family was coming. I could have easily picked another place to eat, but I’m glad I didn’t have to. Everyone was very happy with their meals and we were very happy with the patience and understanding shown to us by our server. The girls were good during lunch, but they’re still kids. Our waitress did everything she could to make them happy and let us enjoy lunch and that’s very appreciated.
As much as we meet my parents in New Buffalo, I know we’ll be back.