WASILLA — Triple J Roadhouse owner Jessica Briles is very excited about their recent move from Houston to downtown Wasilla and all the new opportunities it brings to their family-run business.
“I feel like with this location, we found our dream spot. This is just like our spot where we can make our vision happen,” Briles said.
The Triple J Roadhouse was first established in the summer of 2018, operating out of the historic Houston Lodge facility until December 2020 with the pivotal move to the heart of downtown Wasilla.
Triple J is now operating out of the former Mocha Moose cafe off Lucille Street, near the Iditapark and Wonderland Playground.
Briles said the pandemic ultimately pushed them to relocate. She said the bigger building was more expensive to operate and it was too reliant on summer tourism. She switched gears and found a more central location to keep her business and her passion for creating culinary comforts going.
“This is my dream… I’ve always wanted to own my own restaurant,” Briles said. “What you get at Triple J is home cooking.”
Briles said that she set out to make sure she wasn’t just another burger place. Triple J features a variety of burgers stuffed with various cheeses and seasonings. She said they cook everything from scratch, whether it’s smoking the brisket meat or hand-cutting fries onsite. She said it all about bringing to her catering experience across several states and the cooking skills she learned from her grandmother on the family farm together, “coming full circle.”
“We’re known for our stuffed burgers,” Briles said.
According to Briles, Triple J is currently at eight staff members, with family members such as her husband James Briles and their sons Jack and Jayden helping out throughout the week. For Briles, family means everything, and that’s what ultimately led her to plant her roots in Alaska, where she can enjoy spoiling her grandchildren.
“This Mi Mi wanted to get back up here,” Briles said with a laugh.
Briles said her favorite part of running Triple J has been the people who come through their doors. She said that dedicated regulars continued supporting them throughout their pandemic-afflicted struggles at the Houston location.
“I know that we couldn’t have done that without the people coming out to support us. We have had so many people that walked in our doors as customers that are now good friends. That’s amazing to me because our customers aren’t just customers; they’re friends,” Briles said.
Briles said that word quickly spread after they officially reopened in Wasilla. She said the changing of the seasons has really kicked up their overall foot traffic.
“The month of April has been really good to us,” Briles said.
Looking forward, Briles aims to keep growing Triple J with outdoor and indoor dining options. She said that she’s looking to apply for a beer and wine license for this location. She also hopes to rekindle the summer music festival tradition they started in Houston, looking at places like the nearby park as possible venues.
Briles pointed out that keeping Triple J going and primed for the future with so much community support is a victory all the sweeter since she beat cancer right before the pandemic hit.
“I literally just had the last chemo treatment and two months later, COVID happened,” Briles said. “We’re still here and we’re still doing well. So, not only am I alive, but my health is doing well and our business is doing well in spite of everything.”
For more information about Triple J Roadhouse, call 907-373-3663 or visit their official Facebook page.
Contact Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman reporter Jacob Mann at email@example.com