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The Depot American Diner
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  • Post #121 - March 5th, 2007, 2:09 pm
    Post #121 - March 5th, 2007, 2:09 pm Post #121 - March 5th, 2007, 2:09 pm
    Mmmm. Good!

    Stopped by on Saturday morning for a promised breakfast for the wife.

    The place looks good! I kinda miss the poker machines in the back room (where they have the 'Private Dining Room (nook?)'). It was always interesting to see what characters would come and go.

    The atmosphere was relaxing. a steady flow of customers and employees.

    My order, open face hot beef sandwich with mashed (homemade with garlic) and a bowl of cream of tomato soup.

    The soup? Homemade and very good. Came with a nice roll and I prefer crackers and a few packages of oyster crackers were brought out.

    The hot beef? Very tasty but not a hot beef sandwich, more of a hot pot roast sandwich. Don't get me wrong, it was awesome, just not what I was expecting. The cole slaw and chunk of pickle were a nice addition too.

    My bride had two eggs over easy with bacon, potatoes and toast. The toast was made from a bread a notch above the standard restaurant fare and the potatoes... Great! Chunks instead of the usual hash browns with sautéed onions and light seasoning.

    She enjoyed her breakfast very much.

    No room for dessert and the coffee, while standard diner grind, was a bit stronger than most and hit the spot.

    It is great to see this spot reopen done as nicely as it is and with a great menu with reasonable prices.
  • Post #122 - March 5th, 2007, 6:24 pm
    Post #122 - March 5th, 2007, 6:24 pm Post #122 - March 5th, 2007, 6:24 pm
    Panther in the Den wrote:The hot beef? Very tasty but not a hot beef sandwich, more of a hot pot roast sandwich.


    Isn't is billed as such on the menu?
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #123 - March 5th, 2007, 6:29 pm
    Post #123 - March 5th, 2007, 6:29 pm Post #123 - March 5th, 2007, 6:29 pm
    stevez wrote:
    Panther in the Den wrote:The hot beef? Very tasty but not a hot beef sandwich, more of a hot pot roast sandwich.


    Isn't is billed as such on the menu?


    Looking at the menu, I see there's the Pot Roast Sandwich (which we all know and love) and the Open Face Beef, both priced at $6:59.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #124 - March 5th, 2007, 6:34 pm
    Post #124 - March 5th, 2007, 6:34 pm Post #124 - March 5th, 2007, 6:34 pm
    stevez wrote:
    Panther in the Den wrote:The hot beef? Very tasty but not a hot beef sandwich, more of a hot pot roast sandwich.


    Isn't is billed as such on the menu?


    There is a pot roast sandwich listed but there is a subtle difference in the way restaurants list the open face sandwiches (with gravy). For instance, there could be a turkey sandwich listed on the menu, turkey with trimmings between two slices of bread and then there could be a hot turkey sandwich listed which would be open face with gravy.

    At The Depot they have a Pot Roast sandwich listed which I assume is between 2 slices and a hot beef sandwich which I assumed to be sliced beef open face with gravy and not pot roast open face.

    Either way it was good! Just not what I expected.
  • Post #125 - March 13th, 2007, 11:37 am
    Post #125 - March 13th, 2007, 11:37 am Post #125 - March 13th, 2007, 11:37 am
    Thank you LTh for helping put the Depot on the map.
    I have been reading all your encouraging comments and biscuit advice.

    I am Roberts sister JoAnn Nava, a South Florida Artist/designer.
    When Robert told me of his plans for the restaurant, I wanted to come up with a design that would showcase the flavors of his food in the language of a forties Hopper diner. I flew up last fall to conceptualize and storyboard the project.
    The black board art is a style I personally incorporated into my paintings in a solo exhibition titled Cookies and Milk. However, the works at The depot are done by Dudley Filmore, AnnaMaries father.
    I have been a commercial designer and free lance artist for the past 20 yrs. I enjoyed thoroughly designing the diner. It was a labor of Love.
    Thank you again for finding The Depot.
    JoAnn Nava
    JoAnnNava@aol.com


    Designer of THE DEPOT, An American Diner
    JoAnn Nava
  • Post #126 - March 28th, 2007, 1:31 pm
    Post #126 - March 28th, 2007, 1:31 pm Post #126 - March 28th, 2007, 1:31 pm
    Panther in the Den wrote:
    stevez wrote:
    Panther in the Den wrote:The hot beef? Very tasty but not a hot beef sandwich, more of a hot pot roast sandwich.


    Isn't is billed as such on the menu?


    There is a pot roast sandwich listed but there is a subtle difference in the way restaurants list the open face sandwiches (with gravy). For instance, there could be a turkey sandwich listed on the menu, turkey with trimmings between two slices of bread and then there could be a hot turkey sandwich listed which would be open face with gravy.

    At The Depot they have a Pot Roast sandwich listed which I assume is between 2 slices and a hot beef sandwich which I assumed to be sliced beef open face with gravy and not pot roast open face.

    Either way it was good! Just not what I expected.


    The pot roast sandwich is between does have both a heel and a crown but is intended to be eaten with silverware. This threw me off. I thought that if a sandwich was open face, you eat it with silverware. If it has a crown, you pick it up with your hands.

    Well, needless to say, with the gravy and all, eating it with my hands was a disgusting (but tasty) spectacle. It was only after I was done that I asked the waitress which method was intended.

    By the way, I agree with all the positive comments of the Depot posted before mine: great food at diner prices, extremely friendly service, spot-on decor and I love the mexican coke.
  • Post #127 - March 29th, 2007, 5:27 am
    Post #127 - March 29th, 2007, 5:27 am Post #127 - March 29th, 2007, 5:27 am
    FINALLY made it to the Diner last night. The chili was the only thing that was
    a little weak. Carrots in chili is plain out wrong to me. - Kind of like a nawlins or french chef takes a stab at chili, but everything else was damn good. Got to try the donuts, and the banana bread pudding too. BB pudding - REAL GOOD!! I suggested they offer a turkey rueben sammich.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #128 - March 29th, 2007, 7:33 am
    Post #128 - March 29th, 2007, 7:33 am Post #128 - March 29th, 2007, 7:33 am
    seebee wrote:FINALLY made it to the Diner last night. The chili was the only thing that was
    a little weak. Carrots in chili is plain out wrong to me. - Kind of like a nawlins or french chef takes a stab at chili, but everything else was damn good. Got to try the donuts, and the banana bread pudding too. BB pudding - REAL GOOD!! I suggested they offer a turkey rueben sammich.


    I understand that chili traditionalists might balk at carrots in chili, but wouldn't Reuban traditionalist balk at turkey in the sandwich. :D

    David "Why balk? If it tastes good, eat it" Hammond
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #129 - March 29th, 2007, 7:34 am
    Post #129 - March 29th, 2007, 7:34 am Post #129 - March 29th, 2007, 7:34 am
    David Hammond wrote:I understand that chili traditionalists might balk at carrots in chili, but wouldn't Reuban traditionalist balk at turkey in the sandwich. :D


    You bet I would. ;)

    Best,
    Michael
  • Post #130 - March 29th, 2007, 8:22 pm
    Post #130 - March 29th, 2007, 8:22 pm Post #130 - March 29th, 2007, 8:22 pm
    I suggested "turkey" because they have it on hand every day, and it makes a killer rueben if you ask me. Dressing can be made in house with what they've already got. Sauerkraut , and MAYBE a rye would be the only thing needed. Since the kraut will last for a good while, and I LOVE a good turkey rueben, it just made sense to me as a suggestion.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #131 - March 29th, 2007, 8:58 pm
    Post #131 - March 29th, 2007, 8:58 pm Post #131 - March 29th, 2007, 8:58 pm
    Site is up:

    http://www.thedepotamericandiner.com/index.html
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #132 - April 1st, 2007, 6:09 pm
    Post #132 - April 1st, 2007, 6:09 pm Post #132 - April 1st, 2007, 6:09 pm
    So, my new favorite at the Depot is the luscious Banana Bread Pudding with a buttery rich carmal sauce and whipped cream. If i had not eaten it in just a few seconds there would be a picture for you...
  • Post #133 - April 24th, 2007, 12:33 pm
    Post #133 - April 24th, 2007, 12:33 pm Post #133 - April 24th, 2007, 12:33 pm
    Stopped in at lunch today and was the only person at the counter while a total of 5 were at the booths.

    One of the staff said business was slow. So, drop in to keep them going!
  • Post #134 - May 6th, 2007, 11:13 am
    Post #134 - May 6th, 2007, 11:13 am Post #134 - May 6th, 2007, 11:13 am
    LTH,

    Bride and I went to The Depot for breakfast, very good B & G for me, Apple Pancakes for her, to which she paid her highest compliment, "tastes like my mom's." I agree, the apple pancakes were terrific!

    The Depot Apple Pancakes (5.6.07)
    Image

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Last edited by G Wiv on May 6th, 2007, 8:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #135 - May 6th, 2007, 5:46 pm
    Post #135 - May 6th, 2007, 5:46 pm Post #135 - May 6th, 2007, 5:46 pm
    G Wiv wrote:very good B & G for me


    Did you get a picture of the B & G? Inquiring minds want to know.
    JiLS
  • Post #136 - May 6th, 2007, 7:58 pm
    Post #136 - May 6th, 2007, 7:58 pm Post #136 - May 6th, 2007, 7:58 pm
    JimInLoganSquare wrote:Did you get a picture of the B & G? Inquiring minds want to know.

    Jim,

    Yes, of course, but it looks pretty much like the one I posed upthread though today's has crushed red pepper strewn about. I'll post it anyway, just for you. :)

    Depot Diner Biscuits and Gravy (5.6.07)
    Image

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #137 - May 6th, 2007, 8:08 pm
    Post #137 - May 6th, 2007, 8:08 pm Post #137 - May 6th, 2007, 8:08 pm
    Thank you. That is so different from and obviously superior to the B&G I found on my notorious visit to Depot Diner, that now I know it had to have been an aberration. I will have to get down there sooner rather than later for some of what you picture here.
    JiLS
  • Post #138 - May 6th, 2007, 9:03 pm
    Post #138 - May 6th, 2007, 9:03 pm Post #138 - May 6th, 2007, 9:03 pm
    JimInLoganSquare wrote:Thank you. That is so different from and obviously superior to the B&G I found on my notorious visit to Depot Diner, that now I know it had to have been an aberration. I will have to get down there sooner rather than later for some of what you picture here.


    Either that or I need to hire the Wiv to take some photos of me for online dating:)
  • Post #139 - May 11th, 2007, 4:47 pm
    Post #139 - May 11th, 2007, 4:47 pm Post #139 - May 11th, 2007, 4:47 pm
    Shaggy Diner Story, with a plug for the Photo Contest:

    So the other day G Wiv tells me he had been at the Map Room, talking to the bouncer, and somehow the subject of LTHForum comes up, and the bouncer says, yeah, my picture's on there:

    Image

    Turns out he, and the artist who did his tattoos, were the subjects of this shot intended to convey the atmosphere at Schwa. Luckily, he was amused rather than ready to come practice his skills on me, and requested the file from G Wiv who passed the request along to me.

    So today, I go to Depot Diner, to finally have the thing I've been dreaming of having for weeks, the pot roast sandwich:

    Image

    Which is a thing of beauty, my candidate for Best Thing You've Eaten Lately, it even made me like frozen Cajun-salted french fries covered with gravy, which to me have three strikes against them but I was ready to order an extra side. Followed by:

    Image

    A little dense for my taste, but fine nonetheless, I ate all I could and the kids will finish it happily. Great lunch, well worth the drive.

    So I'm talking to Robert and his wife, ask him how business is, publicity mill is still chugging along, they were in some local Berwyn/Cicero publication which brought a lot of business, they're going to be in Chicago mag next month (in addition to their little mention this month in the Best New Restaurants piece), along the way I mention LTHForum and that I took the black and white pictures in this thread-- and his wife says "Oh my God, I was going to register just to email you, I want to get that picture of the front of the diner--

    Image

    --and have it framed for the back room, because we have all these black and white pictures and you can't see the Diner from the back room, so you might as well have a picture of our Diner to look at!"

    So how's that for self-referentiality: soon you can go to the Depot Diner because you read about it on LTHForum, and sit under the photo you saw on LTHForum of the actual restaurant 8 feet away from where you're sitting. Anyway, just goes to show the unexpected rewards you can enjoy by taking food photos, posting them on LTHForum, and being eligible for the LTHForum Photo Contest. Go eat somewhere cool, take pictures and enter today!

    And go have a pot roast sandwich at Depot Diner. Seriously, do not delay. It's calling you.
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  • Post #140 - May 11th, 2007, 5:40 pm
    Post #140 - May 11th, 2007, 5:40 pm Post #140 - May 11th, 2007, 5:40 pm
    Mike G wrote:So the other day G Wiv tells me he had been at the Map Room, talking to the bouncer, and somehow the subject of LTHForum comes up, and the bouncer says, yeah, my picture's on there:

    Mike,

    Actually, I was at the Matchbox talking to Lincoln, who is the bouncer at the Map Room, but close enough. ;) The picture seems to evoke just the right tone for Schwa. Nice to get photo love from left field, well deserved I might add.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #141 - May 11th, 2007, 8:33 pm
    Post #141 - May 11th, 2007, 8:33 pm Post #141 - May 11th, 2007, 8:33 pm
    Waitaminute, is that Kim Saigh in the photo? I think it is. I am suddenly reminded of a phone call I need to make.
  • Post #142 - May 14th, 2007, 8:04 pm
    Post #142 - May 14th, 2007, 8:04 pm Post #142 - May 14th, 2007, 8:04 pm
    JimInLoganSquare wrote:Thank you. That is so different from and obviously superior to the B&G I found on my notorious visit to Depot Diner, that now I know it had to have been an aberration. I will have to get down there sooner rather than later for some of what you picture here.

    I don't know if it helps or hurts their cause, but the b&g at the Depot are now affectionately known as "JILS biscuits and gravy." It was on the blackboard and official when I was there Sunday, with me mum, for Mother's Day. Fantastic meal, as always, and mum was plenty pleased.

    Kristen
  • Post #143 - May 14th, 2007, 8:32 pm
    Post #143 - May 14th, 2007, 8:32 pm Post #143 - May 14th, 2007, 8:32 pm
    kl5 wrote:I don't know if it helps or hurts their cause, but the b&g at the Depot are now affectionately known as "JILS biscuits and gravy." It was on the blackboard and official when I was there Sunday, with me mum, for Mother's Day. Fantastic meal, as always, and mum was plenty pleased.


    I hope this doesn't go to my head. I've never had to deal with celebrity before. In any event, I'm glad the nomination is affectionate; I just assumed they had my photo affixed in the urinals by now.

    So, did mum or you sample the JiLS B&G?
    JiLS
  • Post #144 - May 14th, 2007, 8:50 pm
    Post #144 - May 14th, 2007, 8:50 pm Post #144 - May 14th, 2007, 8:50 pm
    but the b&g at the Depot are now affectionately known as "JILS biscuits and gravy."


    Hah - I saw that today and didn't even think to put the 2 and 2 together. I figured it was an oops on "Jill's."

    I don't know if anyone has sampled the club sammich, but - no surprise - pretty damned good.
    Writing about craft beer at GuysDrinkingBeer.com
    "You don't realize it, but we're at dinner right now." ~Ebert
  • Post #145 - May 15th, 2007, 1:35 am
    Post #145 - May 15th, 2007, 1:35 am Post #145 - May 15th, 2007, 1:35 am
    whiskeybent wrote:I don't know if anyone has sampled the club sammich, but - no surprise - pretty damned good.

    I had a Depot Diner club sandwich 4-5 weeks ago, was delicious and picturesque enough I was sorry I did not have my camera with me.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #146 - May 15th, 2007, 6:28 am
    Post #146 - May 15th, 2007, 6:28 am Post #146 - May 15th, 2007, 6:28 am
    JimInLoganSquare wrote:I just assumed they had my photo affixed in the urinals by now.

    So, did mum or you sample the JiLS B&G?

    No urinals, so you're safe on that front.

    No, no one in our group (of 5) ordered the b&g. I've tried them and liked them very well, but I was in a lunch sort of mood. I ordered the BLT and DAMN, even with May tomatoes, that was a fine sandwich. My brother had the club. He would have had to unhinge his jaw to get teeth on either side of that thing, but it nevertheless disappeared and quickly. Eggs, sausage, bacon, potatoes, apple pancakes, etc., all were perfectly executed and well received.
    (And my mother has declared the Depot's coffee her new favorite--good thing he sells the beans or I'd surely start seeing a lot more of her. :wink: )

    Kristen
  • Post #147 - May 20th, 2007, 5:12 pm
    Post #147 - May 20th, 2007, 5:12 pm Post #147 - May 20th, 2007, 5:12 pm
    kl5 wrote:I don't know if it helps or hurts their cause, but the b&g at the Depot are now affectionately known as "JILS biscuits and gravy." It was on the blackboard and official when I was there Sunday, with me mum, for Mother's Day.


    And it was still there this Saturday when Mrs. JiLS and I showed up around 930 a.m. Mike G and his kids were finishing up their own plates of B&G as we entered; after a pleasant exchange with the intrepid trio, we got down to business. The Verdict: Very, very good B&G. The gravy is the best I've had in the Chicago area. Folks, if you are wondering what country gravy is supposed to taste like, this is it. The biscuits were also top-notch. I liked that they were both fresh and dense, without a hint of mealiness, and with a lively flavor. My only complaint -- if you can call it that -- was that these biscuits are of the style that doesn't have a browned and crisp exterior. That's a matter of style and preference, not in any way a mark against these biscuits, which are an excellent example of their type. The owner enjoyed giving me some gentle ribbing about my "history" with Depot American Diner, and provided a bit of trivia that it was his wife who decided to dub the B&G "JiLS," for good or ill. On the way out, I added my mark of approval to the chalkboard message. This breakfast was one of several highlights of a wonderful spring day, that also included an ice at Mario's and dinner at Little Three Happiness (now, Mrs. JilS's go-to place for clams).
    JiLS
  • Post #148 - May 20th, 2007, 5:45 pm
    Post #148 - May 20th, 2007, 5:45 pm Post #148 - May 20th, 2007, 5:45 pm
    I wondered if your silence until now was damning... glad to hear otherwise.
    Watch Sky Full of Bacon, the Chicago food HD podcast!
    New episode: Soil, Corn, Cows and Cheese
    Watch the Reader's James Beard Award-winning Key Ingredient here.
  • Post #149 - May 20th, 2007, 5:49 pm
    Post #149 - May 20th, 2007, 5:49 pm Post #149 - May 20th, 2007, 5:49 pm
    Mike G wrote:I wondered if your silence until now was damning... glad to hear otherwise.


    The only thing damned by my silence is my work schedule, which made it impossible to take breakfast out on a Saturday before this week. And now that's been damned aloud.
    JiLS
  • Post #150 - May 22nd, 2007, 6:06 am
    Post #150 - May 22nd, 2007, 6:06 am Post #150 - May 22nd, 2007, 6:06 am
    JimInLoganSquare wrote:This breakfast was one of several highlights of a wonderful spring day, that also included an ice at Mario's and dinner at Little Three Happiness (now, Mrs. JilS's go-to place for clams).

    Jim,

    Hell of a day, nice to see you are taking time to stop and smell the biscuits, so to speak.

    Good thing you liked Depot's B &G or they might have renamed them to......well, use your imagination. :) Not that they would have, they seem very nice people.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow

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