Famous Dave's opens in Yakima on Labor Day, September 2nd. Many times, before a restaurant officially opens to the public, they'll do what's called a 'soft open' where they allow family of the staff and select other people to come in and order to give the staff practice before the grand opening. It gives them the real-time experience they need. I was invited to check out Famous Dave's a couple of days before they opened. Here's what I saw.

It was a little busy, but not too busy. Probably what you can expect on any given Friday for lunch. Plenty of seating made it so we didn't have to wait. Two different doors to walk through. One is for to-go orders and the other is the main entrance. I was greeted by someone who opened the door for us (classy!) and some very cheerful staff who quickly found us a table.

The first thing you notice is a blast of an awesome barbequing meat aroma which already makes you being to salivate. You'll also notice a lot of trophies. Those aren't just for decoration! Those are actual trophies they've won for their food from their pork to the bread pudding!

Wilbur, their giant pig mascot, was also walking around shaking hands and dancing around give it a very fun atmosphere. The kids that were there were loving him.

I continued to look around. I loved the lay out. They had places to eat outside and the bar had over 50 beers on tap. Upon closer inspection, many of those beers are regional from Bale Breaker to Yakima Craft to Ice Harbor and many other area beers. They even had hard cider on tap.

I've been to Famous Dave's before, but now that we have on in Yakima, I'll make many more stops in the future. What should you order? Everything is good, but my personal favorites are the brisket and those corn bread muffins. They pride themselves on their sauce, which is some of the best I've ever had. The Texas Pit is my personal favorite. You should give it a try when you're there or, if you love it, you can buy a bottle to take home.

You can find Famous Dave's in front of JC Penny across from Toys R Us in Union Gap. It's worth checking out!

Photo: John Riggs
Photo: John Riggs
Photo: John Riggs

And here's a look at what I ordered. I highly recommend getting exactly this.