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Muffaletta in Chicago?

Muffaletta in Chicago?
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  • Post #61 - January 21st, 2022, 8:50 pm
    Post #61 - January 21st, 2022, 8:50 pm Post #61 - January 21st, 2022, 8:50 pm
    Hi,

    I went for the very first time to Tony's Subs in Deerfield, located on west side of Waukegan Road just south from Deerfield High School.

    I was with a friend who likes their Ham and Provolone subs with Gardiniera. I opted for the olive salad on a similar sandwich.

    I learned their olive salad is delivered to them directly from Central Grocery in New Orleans. They do not make Muffaletta sandwiches, though they do cater Sub Sandwiches for $21 per foot. You may want to talk them to be sure.

    Tony's Subs
    1480 Waukegan Road
    Deerfield, IL 60015
    (847) 940-7352
    Business Hours
    Mon - Sat: 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
    Sun: 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
    https://www.tonyssubsil.com/
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #62 - January 21st, 2022, 9:15 pm
    Post #62 - January 21st, 2022, 9:15 pm Post #62 - January 21st, 2022, 9:15 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:Hi,

    I went for the very first time to Tony's Subs in Deerfield, located on west side of Waukegan Road just south from Deerfield High School.

    I was with a friend who likes their Ham and Provolone subs with Gardiniera. I opted for the olive salad on a similar sandwich.

    I learned their olive salad is delivered to them directly from Central Grocery in New Orleans. They do not make Muffaletta sandwiches, though they do cater Sub Sandwiches for $21 per foot. You may want to talk them to be sure.

    Tony's Subs
    1480 Waukegan Road
    Deerfield, IL 60015
    (847) 940-7352
    Business Hours
    Mon - Sat: 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
    Sun: 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
    https://www.tonyssubsil.com/

    Maybe they'll just sell some of the olive salad. The place is pretty much only as good as it needs to be to satisfy the nearby, captive-audience high schoolers. I think you'd find their sandwiches pretty disappointing, especially for a special occasion. But you can always try one out and see for yourself. Low barrier to entry for sure.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #63 - January 21st, 2022, 10:36 pm
    Post #63 - January 21st, 2022, 10:36 pm Post #63 - January 21st, 2022, 10:36 pm
    Hi,

    I was just waiting for the wilting comment on Tony's Subs.

    Yay! I like to be right ... sometimes I like to be surprised, too!

    Regards,
    CAthy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #64 - January 21st, 2022, 11:18 pm
    Post #64 - January 21st, 2022, 11:18 pm Post #64 - January 21st, 2022, 11:18 pm
    Went on a Muffaletta fact finding mission today with abe_froeman. The plan was to stop at several places, grab a half Muff to go at each, then bring them home for a side by side taste test.

    Got a late start, so missed our first stop at Tony's in Edison Park, which closes at 3pm. We zipped down to the next place on the list, L&M Fine Foods on Lincoln Avenue. After that we discovered we missed the lunch hours at J.P. Graziano's, so decided to wait until they reopen at 6p for dinner/late night orders.

    We needed to kill about 90 minutes, so stopped in at Crazy Bird Fried Chicken to grab a quick bite and a visit with Chef Larry Tucker. Opted to split the Buffalo Chicken Sandwich. Very tasty, but no replacement for Larry's outstanding bone-in chicken.

    Finally rolled around to 6pm, so we said our goodbyes and headed down to Graziano's. Turns out they only do a full Muff, but it's smaller, about 2/3 the size, of Central Grocery's iconic version.

    After that we retreated to the NW burbs for samplings. Both versions were tasty, but Graziano's was clearly the better sandwich. Flavors were brighter, more intense, and more satisfying. Specifically, the Olive Salad was the standout ingredient, followed by the Provolone which was much stronger and flavorful than L&M's iteration.

    I'd still be interested in trying Tony's Italian Deli & Subs in Chicago, and Tony's Subs in Deerfield.

    BTW, during our travels, while chatting with a Milwaukee based NOLA-phile friend, we were told Central Grocery has a Muffaletta pack available for shipping. $170 gets you five full Muffs, enough for 16-20 people, shipping included.

    Buddy
    Last edited by BuddyRoadhouse on January 22nd, 2022, 4:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #65 - January 21st, 2022, 11:31 pm
    Post #65 - January 21st, 2022, 11:31 pm Post #65 - January 21st, 2022, 11:31 pm
    BuddyRoadhouse wrote:BTW, during our travels, while chatting with a Milwaukee based NOLA-phile friend, that Central Grocery has a Muffaletta pack available for shipping. $170 gets you five full Muffs, enough for 16-20 people, shipping included.

    Sold via goldbelly and I think that price is a current special, down from the regular price of $209. Not a bad price, considering that when I bought a single sandwich there in person back in 2017, it was $22. And they travel quite well. I left that sandwich unrefrigerated in my hotel room for a day before I dragged it home with me. After I got home, I let it sit on the counter for another day or two before consuming it. And then, it was luscious. The meat, cheese and olive salad had semi-synergized into a delicious mass. Most of the bread was nearly translucent from oil migration but the exterior of the bread was still a bit crusty. Way back in the day, I lived in NOLA for a couple of years and even still, that may have been the best muffaletta I ever had! :D

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #66 - January 22nd, 2022, 11:38 am
    Post #66 - January 22nd, 2022, 11:38 am Post #66 - January 22nd, 2022, 11:38 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:...I left that sandwich unrefrigerated in my hotel room for a day before I dragged it home with me. After I got home, I let it sit on the counter for another day or two before consuming it. And then, it was luscious. The meat, cheese and olive salad had semi-synergized into a delicious mass. Most of the bread was nearly translucent from oil migration but the exterior of the bread was still a bit crusty...=R=

    This is food writing at it's finest.
    Too long for a banner quote? :)
  • Post #67 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:32 am
    Post #67 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:32 am Post #67 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:32 am
    zoid wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:...I left that sandwich unrefrigerated in my hotel room for a day before I dragged it home with me. After I got home, I let it sit on the counter for another day or two before consuming it. And then, it was luscious. The meat, cheese and olive salad had semi-synergized into a delicious mass. Most of the bread was nearly translucent from oil migration but the exterior of the bread was still a bit crusty...=R=

    This is food writing at it's finest.
    Too long for a banner quote? :)

    Lol, I think so but thanks for the kind words! It was a genuine Homer Simpson moment for me. :D

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #68 - January 23rd, 2022, 12:03 pm
    Post #68 - January 23rd, 2022, 12:03 pm Post #68 - January 23rd, 2022, 12:03 pm
    Ronnie,

    I've never had a muffaletta.

    Is there so much acid in the dressings on the sandwich that you felt the meat was protected ?
  • Post #69 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:04 pm
    Post #69 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:04 pm Post #69 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:04 pm
    So, BuddyRoadhouse and I went out on Friday and tried two muffalettas- J.P. Graziano's and L & M Fine Foods, and my husband and I got one from Tony's yesterday.

    We liked the olive spread from L & M a lot. But it was a little light on the meat & cheese, in general and in proportion to the amount of bread. We only got a half-sandwich, but I think the roll they use is a lot taller in the middle, so that initial bite into the cut side requires you to unhinge your jaw a bit.

    Graziano's was more manageable. We felt like the meat & cheese : bread ratio was much better, and the overall flavor was more balanced. My husband felt like the olive spread wasn't olive-y enough, as though it was just giardiniera. I took pictures of the cross-section of each sandwich, but didn't remove the bread to actually see the composition of the olive spread.

    Tony's was a good sandwich, but they lose points for not using a bread with sesame seeds. I really missed the nuttiness that adds to the flavor. It was the moistest of all the sandwiches- I think their olive spread has more oil in it, maybe? I'll definitely be returning there to try their other food and shop in their store.

    I'm going to recommend Graziano's to my brother-in-law for the party. I'll make sure we get a jar of the olive spread so people can add more if they want. We'll probably be the ones picking them up, which will be a schlep from Arlington Heights and then back to the party in Mount Prospect, but I think it'll be worth it.

    J.P. Graziano's
    901 W Randolph St
    Chicago, IL 60607
    (312) 666-4587
    https://jpgraziano.com/

    Tony's Italian Deli & Subs
    6708 Northwest Hwy
    Chicago, IL 60631
    (773) 631-0055
    https://www.tonysdeliandsubs.com/

    L & M Fine Foods
    4363 North Lincoln Avenue
    Chicago, IL, 60618
    773-825-2370
    https://www.lmfinefoods.com/
  • Post #70 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:31 pm
    Post #70 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:31 pm Post #70 - January 23rd, 2022, 1:31 pm
    lougord99 wrote:Ronnie,

    I've never had a muffaletta.

    Is there so much acid in the dressings on the sandwich that you felt the meat was protected ?

    Cured meats, cheese, olive salad and bread. None of it seemed particularly perishable, so I took my chances. Kind of felt like it'd be easy to discern if something was off. And I was rewarded for my gamble. :D

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #71 - January 23rd, 2022, 11:30 pm
    Post #71 - January 23rd, 2022, 11:30 pm Post #71 - January 23rd, 2022, 11:30 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    lougord99 wrote:Ronnie,

    I've never had a muffaletta.

    Is there so much acid in the dressings on the sandwich that you felt the meat was protected ?

    Cured meats, cheese, olive salad and bread. None of it seemed particularly perishable, so I took my chances. Kind of felt like it'd be easy to discern if something was off. And I was rewarded for my gamble. :D

    =R=


    It was protected from spoiling by that NOLA juju.

    Buddy
  • Post #72 - January 24th, 2022, 12:00 am
    Post #72 - January 24th, 2022, 12:00 am Post #72 - January 24th, 2022, 12:00 am
    BuddyRoadhouse wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    lougord99 wrote:Ronnie,

    I've never had a muffaletta.

    Is there so much acid in the dressings on the sandwich that you felt the meat was protected ?

    Cured meats, cheese, olive salad and bread. None of it seemed particularly perishable, so I took my chances. Kind of felt like it'd be easy to discern if something was off. And I was rewarded for my gamble. :D

    =R=


    It was protected from spoiling by that NOLA juju.

    Buddy

    LOL- definitely that, too! :)

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #73 - January 24th, 2022, 7:26 pm
    Post #73 - January 24th, 2022, 7:26 pm Post #73 - January 24th, 2022, 7:26 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:I left that sandwich unrefrigerated in my hotel room for a day before I dragged it home with me.

    Ok, if we're confessing to muffaletta abuse, I can play. After a visit to New Orleans with my parents and a brother the second week of March 2020 (Whoo-boy!), the plan was to leave town for Houma for an airboat ride.

    We checked out early and I was tasked with running into Central Grocery to pick up sandwiches. As I jumped out of the double-parked car, dad said, "Get four!" I knew that was to many for four people but wound up getting three instead, still a lot for four people. We then drove to Jean Lafitte National Park and hiked for several hours. It was in the 80s and the sandwiches sat in the hot car. We were ravenous and the sandwiches were warm. So delicious. I think we ate a little over one right then and there. Back into the hot car and the remaining sandwiches made for some incredible lunches over the following days.

    I was so glad to have packed my Messermeister tomato knife. It's not as nice as a lot of knives we see around here but I don't have to worry that I'll forget it in my carryon, well, other than the increased scrutiny from TSA (not that this has happened yet). We shared a number of things and it offered an easy way to split things up while also being easy to clean in a La Quinta - Houma, LA motel bathroom.
  • Post #74 - January 24th, 2022, 11:21 pm
    Post #74 - January 24th, 2022, 11:21 pm Post #74 - January 24th, 2022, 11:21 pm
    BrendanR wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:I left that sandwich unrefrigerated in my hotel room for a day before I dragged it home with me.

    Ok, if we're confessing to muffaletta abuse, I can play. After a visit to New Orleans with my parents and a brother the second week of March 2020 (Whoo-boy!), the plan was to leave town for Houma for an airboat ride.

    We checked out early and I was tasked with running into Central Grocery to pick up sandwiches. As I jumped out of the double-parked car, dad said, "Get four!" I knew that was to many for four people but wound up getting three instead, still a lot for four people. We then drove to Jean Lafitte National Park and hiked for several hours. It was in the 80s and the sandwiches sat in the hot car. We were ravenous and the sandwiches were warm. So delicious. I think we ate a little over one right then and there. Back into the hot car and the remaining sandwiches made for some incredible lunches over the following days.

    I was so glad to have packed my Messermeister tomato knife. It's not as nice as a lot of knives we see around here but I don't have to worry that I'll forget it in my carryon, well, other than the increased scrutiny from TSA (not that this has happened yet). We shared a number of things and it offered an easy way to split things up while also being easy to clean in a La Quinta - Houma, LA motel bathroom.

    Haha - classic muffaletta lore! Helluva story! :lol:

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #75 - January 25th, 2022, 8:09 am
    Post #75 - January 25th, 2022, 8:09 am Post #75 - January 25th, 2022, 8:09 am
    BrendanR wrote:As I jumped out of the double-parked car, dad said, "Get four!" I knew that was to many for four people but wound up getting three instead

    That is the difference between you and me. I'd of gotten 5 :)

    I have a 6-inch lightly serrated Messermeister utility knife that is hell on tomatoes and such, a useful knife for the money.

    Anyone else craving a Muffaletta after reading this thread?
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #76 - January 25th, 2022, 8:31 am
    Post #76 - January 25th, 2022, 8:31 am Post #76 - January 25th, 2022, 8:31 am
    I can definitely vouch for muffalettas traveling well back to Chicago. Picked some up day of my return flight and they were delicious the next day. Now I know to leave it out of the fridge! :)
  • Post #77 - January 25th, 2022, 9:42 am
    Post #77 - January 25th, 2022, 9:42 am Post #77 - January 25th, 2022, 9:42 am
    Realizing this may not be in the traditional Muffaletta style, its still one hell of a tasty sandwich...016 Serbian restaurant in Lincoln Square, available on the lunch menu.

    Lincoln Square Muffaletta
    Soft Ciabatta bun, Mortadella
    Capicola, Smoked Lonza, Kajmak, LTO, Giardiniera
    Ajvar Aioli
    $12

    016 Restaurant
    5077 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago, IL 60625
    Email: info@016restaurant.com
    Phone: +1 (773) 271 7006
  • Post #78 - January 25th, 2022, 9:31 pm
    Post #78 - January 25th, 2022, 9:31 pm Post #78 - January 25th, 2022, 9:31 pm
    G Wiv wrote:That is the difference between you and me. I'd of gotten 5 :)


    Yes but each muffaletta (is this a proper noun?) session is a meal lost in this amazing food region. In fact, our first morning in town, I foolishly had some food at the hotel lobby breakfast nook. That meant I wasn't hungry come lunch time and lost a fine local bite for some corporate rubber eggs and some bogus sausage patty.
  • Post #79 - January 26th, 2022, 3:23 pm
    Post #79 - January 26th, 2022, 3:23 pm Post #79 - January 26th, 2022, 3:23 pm
    smokinjoe wrote:Realizing this may not be in the traditional Muffaletta style, its still one hell of a tasty sandwich...016 Serbian restaurant in Lincoln Square, available on the lunch menu.

    Lincoln Square Muffaletta
    Soft Ciabatta bun, Mortadella
    Capicola, Smoked Lonza, Kajmak, LTO, Giardiniera
    Ajvar Aioli
    $12

    016 Restaurant
    5077 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago, IL 60625
    Email: info@016restaurant.com
    Phone: +1 (773) 271 7006


    Was just coming here to post this!! One of my favorite sandwiches at my all-around favorite restaurant. To note, I believe all the meats are house-cured/smoked except for mortadella which is from Tempesta Market. Also the $12 includes either fries or chips.

    Count me a huge fan!!
  • Post #80 - January 26th, 2022, 3:27 pm
    Post #80 - January 26th, 2022, 3:27 pm Post #80 - January 26th, 2022, 3:27 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    Anyone else craving a Muffaletta after reading this thread?


    Yes!!
  • Post #81 - January 27th, 2022, 12:12 pm
    Post #81 - January 27th, 2022, 12:12 pm Post #81 - January 27th, 2022, 12:12 pm
    alessio20 wrote:
    G Wiv wrote:
    Anyone else craving a Muffaletta after reading this thread?


    Yes!!


    So much so that I have ordered Central Grocery Olive Salad on Amazon, and have checked the ingredient list for the original sandwich.

    Still looking for anything close to a Muffaletta loaf...
  • Post #82 - February 25th, 2022, 11:56 am
    Post #82 - February 25th, 2022, 11:56 am Post #82 - February 25th, 2022, 11:56 am
    I believe it's a temporary menu add but Jts genuine has a muffaletta on special and it's fantastic. It's on an individual roll vs cut from a giant loaf. The bread is great, the giardinera is spicy and I'm very happy.
  • Post #83 - February 25th, 2022, 12:26 pm
    Post #83 - February 25th, 2022, 12:26 pm Post #83 - February 25th, 2022, 12:26 pm
    WhyBeeSea wrote:I believe it's a temporary menu add but Jts genuine has a muffaletta on special and it's fantastic. It's on an individual roll vs cut from a giant loaf. The bread is great, the giardinera is spicy and I'm very happy.

    Not olive salad?

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #84 - February 25th, 2022, 12:30 pm
    Post #84 - February 25th, 2022, 12:30 pm Post #84 - February 25th, 2022, 12:30 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    WhyBeeSea wrote:I believe it's a temporary menu add but Jts genuine has a muffaletta on special and it's fantastic. It's on an individual roll vs cut from a giant loaf. The bread is great, the giardinera is spicy and I'm very happy.

    Not olive salad?

    =R=


    Looks like both. Not a huge fan of olives so I was just excited about the giardinera being that primary spread I tasted. :)
  • Post #85 - February 25th, 2022, 12:44 pm
    Post #85 - February 25th, 2022, 12:44 pm Post #85 - February 25th, 2022, 12:44 pm
    WhyBeeSea wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    WhyBeeSea wrote:I believe it's a temporary menu add but Jts genuine has a muffaletta on special and it's fantastic. It's on an individual roll vs cut from a giant loaf. The bread is great, the giardinera is spicy and I'm very happy.

    Not olive salad?

    =R=


    Looks like both. Not a huge fan of olives so I was just excited about the giardinera being that primary spread I tasted. :)

    Sounds tasty and I really like GT's but let me be a pedantic little fussypants for just one moment and say that without olive salad -- and only olive salad -- it's not really a muffaletta.

    I'm sorry but having lived in NOLA at one point in my life, I feel somewhat protective about this. :(

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #86 - February 25th, 2022, 2:48 pm
    Post #86 - February 25th, 2022, 2:48 pm Post #86 - February 25th, 2022, 2:48 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    WhyBeeSea wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    WhyBeeSea wrote:I believe it's a temporary menu add but Jts genuine has a muffaletta on special and it's fantastic. It's on an individual roll vs cut from a giant loaf. The bread is great, the giardinera is spicy and I'm very happy.

    Not olive salad?

    =R=


    Looks like both. Not a huge fan of olives so I was just excited about the giardinera being that primary spread I tasted. :)

    Sounds tasty and I really like GT's but let me be a pedantic little fussypants for just one moment and say that without olive salad -- and only olive salad -- it's not really a muffaletta.

    I'm sorry but having lived in NOLA at one point in my life, I feel somewhat protective about this. :(

    =R=


    Totally get it. Im very particular about Korean food in the same way. And any deviation is a deal breaker. But I'm sure you can get this version w only olive salad.
  • Post #87 - February 25th, 2022, 3:49 pm
    Post #87 - February 25th, 2022, 3:49 pm Post #87 - February 25th, 2022, 3:49 pm
    This really isn't a knock on either of you.

    Why does it matter what the food is called, if it is properly described in the menu and it is good. Should they have called it a 'muffalettaish' sandwich ?
  • Post #88 - February 25th, 2022, 4:15 pm
    Post #88 - February 25th, 2022, 4:15 pm Post #88 - February 25th, 2022, 4:15 pm
    WhyBeeSea wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    WhyBeeSea wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    WhyBeeSea wrote:I believe it's a temporary menu add but Jts genuine has a muffaletta on special and it's fantastic. It's on an individual roll vs cut from a giant loaf. The bread is great, the giardinera is spicy and I'm very happy.

    Not olive salad?

    =R=


    Looks like both. Not a huge fan of olives so I was just excited about the giardinera being that primary spread I tasted. :)

    Sounds tasty and I really like GT's but let me be a pedantic little fussypants for just one moment and say that without olive salad -- and only olive salad -- it's not really a muffaletta.

    I'm sorry but having lived in NOLA at one point in my life, I feel somewhat protective about this. :(

    =R=


    Totally get it. Im very particular about Korean food in the same way. And any deviation is a deal breaker. But I'm sure you can get this version w only olive salad.

    Got it and understood. One can't even say that giardiniera wouldn't make it even better. But once alterations are made, it's not ideal to make them without some sort of notation.

    lougord99 wrote:This really isn't a knock on either of you.

    Why does it matter what the food is called, if it is properly described in the menu and it is good. Should they have called it a 'muffalettaish' sandwich ?

    I think it's really important when borrowing someone else's tradition, that close attention is paid to getting it right and/or explaining that the original was merely the inspiration for the new iteration. Not only does it help to properly the preserve the meaning of the term (in this case, "muffaletta," which should mean something very specific) but it also acknowledges the dish's origin and the culture from where it was borrowed. I don't think it's ever a good thing when specific terminology, culinary or other, gets watered down out of convenience and/or carelessness, especially in a commercial setting (I'm not saying this is the case with GT's). I think we all understand that it's the nature of culinary affairs that cuisines and dishes borrow from each other and overlap. IMO, being open, honest and clear about it is all that's needed to keep names meaningful and make such 'adjustments' acceptable.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #89 - February 26th, 2022, 10:59 am
    Post #89 - February 26th, 2022, 10:59 am Post #89 - February 26th, 2022, 10:59 am
    Tenuta's Deli in Kenosha
    That Pickle Guy

    CSD
    Mark A Reitman, PhD
    Professor of Hot Dogs
    Hot Dog University/Vienna Beef
  • Post #90 - February 26th, 2022, 1:33 pm
    Post #90 - February 26th, 2022, 1:33 pm Post #90 - February 26th, 2022, 1:33 pm
    lougord99 wrote:This really isn't a knock on either of you.

    Why does it matter what the food is called, if it is properly described in the menu and it is good. Should they have called it a 'muffalettaish' sandwich ?


    For me it's about personal attachment. If someone made a Chicago dog and used carmalized onions or dijon, I'd immediately dismiss it. Same goes for Stephanie izard's weak ass attempt at bibimbap. Would these things still taste good? Possibly but you wouldn't see me trying it.

    But with things I don't have a personal association with, I'm totally fine with variations. Like the muffaletta. :)

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