You should enter with an appetite for grilled and deep-fried goodness and expect to leave satisfied. And smelling like deliciously grilled onions.
The tiny burger joint is serving up food that packs quite a flavor punch at excellent prices.
The outside of the restaurant is inviting and the signage does its job well. There is more than ample street parking in front of the establishment and on nearby First Street. You can already smell the fried goodness, especially the onions, from outside the door. Expect to leave at the end of the meal through that same door carrying the scent with you all the way to the street and beyond.
The very compact dining space seats about 20 people and is modestly decorated. The tables, chairs and floors are clean and patrons seemed to respect the space by taking care of their trash and cleaning up their own messes. The space can feel a little cramped when the tables are full and people are waiting in line to make food orders, but this is the type of place where you take your food to go, not leisurely dine.
The night my friends and I dined out with our little ones, Joe's was packed with a diverse crowd of diners—students, older couples and singletons. The noise level was good for such a small space and the music that played was at a reasonable level. There were numerous phone orders, including at least one to the nearby . With delivery anywhere in Wyandotte, it would be a shame not to take advantage.
The menu is relatively short, but concise and fulfilling. There isn't anything missing off the menu that you would have expected to find at Joe's. It seems this specialized focus on sliders, hot dogs and all things deep-fried helps to keep the prices quite affordable. There is nothing on the menu costing more than $5.
My three youngest dining companions (ages 3-4) all shared a large basket of fries and two grilled cheese sandwiches. The sandwiches were well-received, as were the french fries that were almost completely polished off at the end of the meal. Their food was just the right temperature and the portions sufficient.
The portions are satisfying for the adult orders, too, leaving you feeling full but not gluttonous. The sliders, both with and without cheese, are by far the star on the menu. The beef is juicy, the bread fresh and the onions nicely grilled. These are the type of burger that inspire a repeat customer base. They also are so reasonably priced, $1.25 plain and $1.35 with cheese, and nicely sized that having a couple in one sitting doesn't feel the least bit indulgent. The mushroom Swiss slider is also pretty tasty but not as delicious as its slimmed-down counterpart.
The menu offers a handful of hot dog choices including a plain dog, chili dog, the deep-fried "Ripper" and the "Rodeo Dog" that is wrapped with onion rings, cheese and barbecue sauce. The Dearborn dogs are tasty, but the chili was a bit too sweet for our dining palates. The casing had the expected snap and arrived warm in a fresh bun.
The perfect accompaniment to the sliders and dogs are the french fries, available plain, covered with chili and cheese, gravy and gravy and cheese. The french fries covered in brown gravy are delectable, with the slightly salty gravy adding a little needed seasoning. The same cannot be said for the chili cheese fries, as the chili was not a hit at our table. It is an unexpected touch to have real shredded cheese on the fries rather than the liquid cheese from a can.
After our fried and grilled feast, dessert was too much to consider. Such a shame as Joe's offers deep-fried Twinkies for $3 a pop. A group of patrons came in and ordered just Twinkies, so I am guessing they are scrumptious. Next time I am near Elm, the Twinkie shall be mine.
Joe's offers a breakfast menu in addition to the lunch and dinner, which includes omelets, English muffin sandwiches, breakfast burrito, biscuits and gravy and oatmeal. "The Polish Hangover" is on the to-try list and is comprised of an English muffin topped with fried bologna, grilled onions, egg, cheese and pierogi.
Drinks include bottled water, milk shakes, Coca-Cola brand fountain sodas and bottles of Faygo Rock & Rye, as well as the hot options of coffee, hot chocolate and tea.
Next time you are watching a game, enjoying a backyard bonfire or traversing the streets of Wyandotte, make sure to give Joe's a try. You will not be disappointed by the food, the speedy service or the prices.