LTH Home

Best Italian Beef

Best Italian Beef
  • Forum HomePost Reply BackTop
    Page 34 of 34 
  • Post #991 - March 17th, 2024, 2:37 pm
    Post #991 - March 17th, 2024, 2:37 pm Post #991 - March 17th, 2024, 2:37 pm
    I've never been to Mr. Beef and as a person who moved to Chicago as a vegetarian haven't ever had Italian beef at all, but I think much of the line at that Mr. Beef could be attributed to 1) the tv show The Bear (that is the inspiration for the restaurant in the show) and 2) being in River North on St. Patrick Day Saturday. Not commenting on the quality of the product one way or the other, just mentioning some other circumstances for its popularity.
  • Post #992 - March 17th, 2024, 5:05 pm
    Post #992 - March 17th, 2024, 5:05 pm Post #992 - March 17th, 2024, 5:05 pm
    Northcenter Joe wrote:I've never been to Mr. Beef and as a person who moved to Chicago as a vegetarian haven't ever had Italian beef at all.


    As an aside, Buona sells a vegan sandwich. My vegetarian wife really enjoys it. They use Upton's seitan product.

    https://buona.com/plantbased/
  • Post #993 - March 18th, 2024, 2:38 pm
    Post #993 - March 18th, 2024, 2:38 pm Post #993 - March 18th, 2024, 2:38 pm
    Everywhere downtown had insane lines on Saturday including some pretty mundane places. But thanks for the price board pic. What does "all sides $1" mean? Peppers? Giardiniara?
  • Post #994 - March 18th, 2024, 4:18 pm
    Post #994 - March 18th, 2024, 4:18 pm Post #994 - March 18th, 2024, 4:18 pm
    tjr wrote:Everywhere downtown had insane lines on Saturday including some pretty mundane places. But thanks for the price board pic. What does "all sides $1" mean? Peppers? Giardiniara?

    tjr,
    I think you nailed it. I predict that paper napkins will soon be considered $1 “sides” and that pay toilets will soon be back.
    If you aren't tasting, you aren't cooking.
  • Post #995 - March 19th, 2024, 12:34 pm
    Post #995 - March 19th, 2024, 12:34 pm Post #995 - March 19th, 2024, 12:34 pm
    I love Mr. Beef! I'm a beef sandwich fancier. Here's my review of theirs on Yelp. The only thing I don't love about Mr. Beef is that they do not have a washroom for customers.

    The differentiator at Mr. Beef is the giardiniera. Sure, the bread is perfect, and the au jus is really flavorful, but the thing you can't get anywhere else is their giardiniera. Let me explain.
    # # #
    The giardiniera at most beef places is one of two ways, either the pieces are too big and overwhelm your palate detracting from the beef sandwich experience, or they are a finely chopped variety that, while not overpowering you with the size of the pieces, are just not that fresh, because so many cut ends from their fine chopping causes too much marination and then it's all kind of amalgamated. Here's where Mr. Beef reigns supreme. Their giardiniera is made in house, so it's fresh. It's not too hot. It's not limp or amalgamated. It's finely chopped, but it stands up. It's spectacular. Order the Rebecca - that's a beef juicy with provolone, hot on the side.
  • Post #996 - March 19th, 2024, 4:24 pm
    Post #996 - March 19th, 2024, 4:24 pm Post #996 - March 19th, 2024, 4:24 pm
    I finally had a chance to try Mr. Beef for the first time two weeks ago when I happened to be in the neighborhood at around 10:15 a.m. Gotta love a beef place that is open that early to serve beef. Breakfast of champions!

    I ordered it dipped, hot and sweet. $9 even. Hey, that's a pretty good price these days. The beef, overall, was a 7/10. It was a little overcooked, getting slightly mealy, but not enough to distract. It was very thinly sliced, as I like it. The jus trended a bit salty, but flavorful. I didn't notice anything special about the giardiniera, but next time I go (and I will return to see if my first impression stands) I will make sure to pay closer attention.

    My top three remain the same: 1) Chickie's, 2) Johnnie's, 3) Al's. Al's really should have an asterisk as it's such an odd duck that when you crave Al's, no other beef will do.
  • Post #997 - March 20th, 2024, 6:22 pm
    Post #997 - March 20th, 2024, 6:22 pm Post #997 - March 20th, 2024, 6:22 pm
    It might not be the Best Italian Beef in the world, but Luke's on Jackson is a far superior beef than Mr. Beef on Franklin in terms of downtown Beefs.
  • Post #998 - June 12th, 2024, 2:01 am
    Post #998 - June 12th, 2024, 2:01 am Post #998 - June 12th, 2024, 2:01 am
    Buona’s has opened a location in Pleasant Prarie Wisconsin.

    https://buona.com/

    Had take out last night off the app for better prices and rewards.
    As good as Johnnies or Al’s!
    The giadiniera was the best I have had with olives, carrots, celery and cauliflower included!
    -Richard
  • Post #999 - June 12th, 2024, 10:43 am
    Post #999 - June 12th, 2024, 10:43 am Post #999 - June 12th, 2024, 10:43 am
    It has probably been close to twenty years since I had Buona. I wasn't that impressed at the time other than it was a good beef and nothing more. I used to get the $5 little buckets at Aldi 4-5 years ago before that deal ended (plus I started to tire of the product). That being said I plan on trying this location as I do go up to Kenosha now and then.

    As to Mr. Beef on Orleans I was a fan decades ago, but the few times I had it in the last 15 years it has dropped off my radar completely.

    Here is more or less my top 20 off the top of my head but in no order. My top five are the top and they are not in order either. I have drastically cut down on getting Italian Beefs in the last five years. I probably forgot a few more.

    Mr. Beef and Pizza on Harlem (Dunning)
    Mr. D's (Montclare)
    Al's (Little Italy)
    Chickie's (Hillside)
    Johnnie's (Elmwood Park)
    Scatchell's (Cicero)
    Novi's (Berwyn)
    Serrelli's (Austin)
    Pete's Red Hots (Oak Park)
    Paradise Pup (Des Plaines)
    Marco's Beef (Belmont Central)
    Luke's on Jackson (Loop)
    The Original Mr. Beef in Homer Glen
    Frannie's (Schiller Park)
    Mama D's (Lemont)
    Roma's (Portage Park)
    Frangella (Palos Park)
    Freddy's Pizza (Cicero)
    Bari Foods (West Loop)
    Bob O's Hot Dogs (Irving Woods)
    Honorable mention for Portillo's because I still like it when they do it well and I was always a fan of their to-go packs for parties and tailgating.
  • Post #1000 - June 12th, 2024, 12:08 pm
    Post #1000 - June 12th, 2024, 12:08 pm Post #1000 - June 12th, 2024, 12:08 pm
    I stopped at Buona beef about 5-6 months ago for drive-thru take-home. Mainly because I noticed Rainbow Cone was available. This was Lawrence just west of Harlem.

    The ice cream was terrific, the beef not so much. I bought two beef’s and an order of fries, which struck me as slightly expensive

    The beef was crumbly and very salty. To the point where the bride and I could finish very little. Giardinaire was good, jus salty .

    Buona is a big name beef stand. Either this was an anomaly or, like Harold’s chicken, you have to pick your location.
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #1001 - June 12th, 2024, 1:59 pm
    Post #1001 - June 12th, 2024, 1:59 pm Post #1001 - June 12th, 2024, 1:59 pm
    As sacrilegious as this may sound, I really dig the beefless vegan beef at Buona. I've always had a soft spot for seitan and their stuff is really well seasoned, as is the jus. And I agree that they offer one of the best giard's in the game (olives!)

    I can't speak to the actual beef, I'm sure I've had it in my lifetime, but am now curious to try it again one of these days.
  • Post #1002 - June 12th, 2024, 2:54 pm
    Post #1002 - June 12th, 2024, 2:54 pm Post #1002 - June 12th, 2024, 2:54 pm
    G Wiv wrote:Buona is a big name beef stand. Either this was an anomaly or, like Harold’s chicken, you have to pick your location.

    I've always assumed that, like Portillo's, Buona makes their stuff in a central facility, bags it, and ships it out to its stores. I haven't had it in years but unless I'm wrong or the Pleasant Prairie location has gone rogue, I'm going to generously attribute a 2:01 AM claim that it's as good as Johnnie's or Al's to be coming from a place where bad decisions are frequently made.
  • Post #1003 - June 12th, 2024, 8:32 pm
    Post #1003 - June 12th, 2024, 8:32 pm Post #1003 - June 12th, 2024, 8:32 pm
    Jefe wrote:As sacrilegious as this may sound, I really dig the beefless vegan beef at Buona. I've always had a soft spot for seitan and their stuff is really well seasoned, as is the jus. And I agree that they offer one of the best giard's in the game (olives!)

    I can't speak to the actual beef, I'm sure I've had it in my lifetime, but am now curious to try it again one of these days.


    I too enjoy the seitan beef at Buona, and also the fact that some friends have one every Friday in Lent, which is the sort of dodging affront akin to eating a fondant rack of ribs.

    At least in the Near Western 'burbs, we have the situation where the Buona in Berwyn is very strong (corporate adjacent, training location), and the Mr. Beef & Pizza in Forest Park abysmal, consistently overdone and stale-tasting. While Johnnie's and Freddy's are best in my book, I would and do take Berwyn Buona over the local Mr. Beef. The Forest Park Portillo's oddly can't be trusted for anything other than the beef (and incorruptible tamales), but they do seem to have that one process down, and it's the usual solid middle-of-pack sandwich.
  • Post #1004 - June 13th, 2024, 7:17 am
    Post #1004 - June 13th, 2024, 7:17 am Post #1004 - June 13th, 2024, 7:17 am
    Jefe wrote:As sacrilegious as this may sound, I really dig the beefless vegan beef at Buona. I've always had a soft spot for seitan and their stuff is really well seasoned, as is the jus. And I agree that they offer one of the best giard's in the game (olives!)

    I can't speak to the actual beef, I'm sure I've had it in my lifetime, but am now curious to try it again one of these days.


    It scratches the itch for my vegetarian wife. Also now available in the freezer section at Jewel.

Contact

About

Team

Advertize

Close

Chat

Articles

Guide

Events

more