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Just Jerk, Jamaican Roadside Hut - At The Intersection of Lanham-Severn Road and Route 450 in Lanham


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Ventured to Just Jerk for lunch this month - this is a small roadside joint on Lanham Severn road at the horrible intersection with 450, in Lanham. In fact, google maps was confused about the location, placing it on the ramp section of 450 and gave completely incorrect directions - you need to be headed westbound on 564 (Lanham Severn), it will be on your left in the section where the road has split between Cipriano and Princess Garden. If you are coming from the west, you will need to loop around and turn into the westbound lanes to get there. The building is a small structure, green with yellow trim and plenty of parking.

We went around 11:30 on a very hot weekday - there was a sign on the door saying that they were going to close early because it was too hot inside. There was no line, and no one else buying lunch, but I have heard that sometimes they get very busy. There is not much in the way of seating, so we got takeout. It only took a minute or two for the food to arrive after placing the order.

I ordered the small jerk dark chicken platter, which came with plantains, cabbage, and rice. They also have beef patties, seafood, sandwiches, and additional sides, plus a freezer full of York Castle pints. I'm not that familiar with jerk, so I can't compare, but I thought the chicken was quite good - juicy with nice flavor - and also liked the cabbage and plantains. There was plenty left over from the "small" platter to eat for lunch the next day, although if it hadn't been broiling hot outside, I might have been hungry enough to polish off the whole thing. I will definitely visit again to try more of their menu, especially since they are only ~10 minutes from my office.

Just Jerk
9005 Lanham Severn Rd
Lanham, MD 20706

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Definitely a big fan too. I always get the jerk chicken, but my girlfriend is a big fan of their brown stew as well.

The freshly made festival (fried corn bread) is really good too. And complements the spicy jerk really well.

If you're going for dinner on the later side, I'd call ahead for the jerk chicken because they do occasionally run out.

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I seriously question whether the real thing can be found outside of Jamaica -- maybe in a few Jamaican neighborhoods where they can legally set up a pit and get the right wood -- if anyone knows of such a place, I for one would be pleased to hear about it.  Meanwhile, all other "jerk chicken" is, at best, a pale imitation of jerk chicken, no matter what spices are involved.  It could of course be tasty, but it isn't jerk.

I've never been to Just Jerk, but it might be worth you looking into - the pictures on Yelp look pretty good, and the business states that:

"We specialize in jerk.  We do it right...over open coals from start to finish.  Everything is cooked fresh throughout the day.  Even rice and peas are prepared several times a day.  We have incredibly delicous patties baked fresh.  Give us a try.  You won't regret it."

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I've never been to Just Jerk, but it might be worth you looking into - the pictures on Yelp look pretty good, and the business states that:

"We specialize in jerk.  We do it right...over open coals from start to finish.  Everything is cooked fresh throughout the day.  Even rice and peas are prepared several times a day.  We have incredibly delicous patties baked fresh.  Give us a try.  You won't regret it."

Thanks.  Might be worth a shot next time I'm in the area.  I did notice that the one yelp reviewer who claimed he is Jamaican, however, didn't think the jerk was so hot, (with multiple meanings of that word)....  Jerk aside, though, any place that has good patties is also worth seeking out.

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Having eaten at Just Jerk several more times - there can sometimes be a bit of a wait for the food to be ready, so we usually call ahead and pick up takeout. The jerk chicken is the best that I have had in this area - I usually order mine "spicy" which gives it a good kick, if you don't specify spicy when you order, you will get the milder version by default IIRC. Their plantains are also really good.

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Thank you for writing about this restaurant.  I had taken the Bullitt to Pat Goss for a physical and found that I was only a little more than a mile from Just Jerk, a place I wanted to try after having read the above comments.  So I walked down the Lanham-Severn Rd. (not one of the more scenic byways in the region).  The jerk chicken was delicious- moist with good flavor.  I wish I had known that one has to ask for "spicy" because I would have preferred more heat.  I also had the festival, which, as already reported, went very well with the chicken.  I had coco bread too.  It just seemed like a bland white bread.  Don't know if that's all there is to it.

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