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Best Italian Beef

Best Italian Beef
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  • Post #871 - January 7th, 2020, 2:41 pm
    Post #871 - January 7th, 2020, 2:41 pm Post #871 - January 7th, 2020, 2:41 pm
    eating while walking wrote:At those places a sausage sandwich dipped hot can rival the IB for tastiness.

    Binko wrote:Wait ... dipping Italian sausage sandwiches is a thing?!?! I've never thought that was an option, but it sounds brilliant.

    I'd go so far as to say genius! Quick lunch today at Wolfy's, remembered eating while walking's pro move and ordered Italian sausage dipped with giardiniera. No pics but it did happen and was stellar! Counter man gave me a nod and "nice move" in the middle of busy lunch rush.

    Hat tip to eating while walking, great idea.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #872 - January 13th, 2020, 9:48 pm
    Post #872 - January 13th, 2020, 9:48 pm Post #872 - January 13th, 2020, 9:48 pm
    Last Thursday, since Thurst Firsday {moved to second because the day of the 2nd was deemed too close to New Year's Day} was going to feature a vertical tasting of Goose Island's Bourbon County Stout mostly from other members of C. B. S., I needed to eat something substantial before this.
    There are a number of italian beef shops along west North Ave. This time around, I went to Image Michael's at North & Oak Park Aves. {so I could have stuck this in the Oak Park thread :wink: }
    The shop renovated sometime in the recent past. Also, it now accepts credit cards [$10 minimum].
    I had the italian beef, hot, wet, and with fries. Image Image Judging by their color, the fries look to have been left in the fryer slightly longer than the last time. They were still fine though. I do not insist on crunchy french fries. :|
    The beef was still a solid effort, one which I will have again. The pepper mix was balanced. At this specific time of day, the shop was getting a bunch of take away orders.
    Valuable links for survival, without a monitization attempt: http://74.115.231.53/~pudgym29/bookmark4.html
  • Post #873 - January 14th, 2020, 11:36 am
    Post #873 - January 14th, 2020, 11:36 am Post #873 - January 14th, 2020, 11:36 am
    pudgym29 wrote: Last Thursday, since Thurst Firsday {moved to second because the day of the 2nd was deemed too close to New Year's Day} was going to feature a vertical tasting of Goose Island's Bourbon County Stout mostly from other members of C. B. S., I needed to eat something substantial before this.
    There are a number of italian beef shops along west North Ave. This time around, I went to Image Michael's at North & Oak Park Aves. {so I could have stuck this in the Oak Park thread :wink: }
    The shop renovated sometime in the recent past. Also, it now accepts credit cards [$10 minimum].
    I had the italian beef, hot, wet, and with fries. Image Image Judging by their color, the fries look to have been left in the fryer slightly longer than the last time. They were still fine though. I do not insist on crunchy french fries. :|
    The beef was still a solid effort, one which I will have again. The pepper mix was balanced. At this specific time of day, the shop was getting a bunch of take away orders.
    I heard the main cashier is a total jerk - the kind of guy that makes you feel you are bothering him by being there. Did you get that kind of impression? By the way thanks for the review - I'll be heading out to try it.
  • Post #874 - January 14th, 2020, 12:47 pm
    Post #874 - January 14th, 2020, 12:47 pm Post #874 - January 14th, 2020, 12:47 pm
    Ram4 wrote:
    pudgym29 wrote: Last Thursday, since Thurst Firsday {moved to second because the day of the 2nd was deemed too close to New Year's Day} was going to feature a vertical tasting of Goose Island's Bourbon County Stout mostly from other members of C. B. S., I needed to eat something substantial before this.
    There are a number of italian beef shops along west North Ave. This time around, I went to Image Michael's at North & Oak Park Aves. {so I could have stuck this in the Oak Park thread :wink: }
    The shop renovated sometime in the recent past. Also, it now accepts credit cards [$10 minimum].
    I had the italian beef, hot, wet, and with fries. Image Image Judging by their color, the fries look to have been left in the fryer slightly longer than the last time. They were still fine though. I do not insist on crunchy french fries. :|
    The beef was still a solid effort, one which I will have again. The pepper mix was balanced. At this specific time of day, the shop was getting a bunch of take away orders.
    I heard the main cashier is a total jerk - the kind of guy that makes you feel you are bothering him by being there. Did you get that kind of impression? By the way thanks for the review - I'll be heading out to try it.


    The remodel and re-opening was probably 2 years ago or more at this point, Unless things have changed recently, I think the "main cashier" you're talking about is the owner. I have never had a problem with him, in fact I have found that he has been conscientious about making sure the orders are correct, fries are hot, etc.

    I think the food they are producing is top-notch.
  • Post #875 - January 26th, 2020, 1:07 pm
    Post #875 - January 26th, 2020, 1:07 pm Post #875 - January 26th, 2020, 1:07 pm
    G Wiv wrote:I'd go so far as to say genius! Quick lunch today at Wolfy's, remembered eating while walking's pro move and ordered Italian sausage dipped with giardiniera. No pics but it did happen and was stellar! Counter man gave me a nod and "nice move" in the middle of busy lunch rush. Hat tip to eating while walking, great idea.

    Glad to be of service!

    Image
    I have to give another top rec to my local favorite, Marco's on Fullerton. Big portion of tender beef sliced so thin it's almost feathery, unique shredded giardinera, and a rich gravy seasoned with fennel seed for that anise-spiked flavor. All on a sturdy roll that does not fall apart (bread disintegration is a big minus in my book). Marco's is doing it right!

    Marco's Beef & Pizza
    6008 W Fullerton Ave, Chicago, IL 60639
  • Post #876 - January 27th, 2020, 3:00 pm
    Post #876 - January 27th, 2020, 3:00 pm Post #876 - January 27th, 2020, 3:00 pm
    Marco's Beef has become one of my favorites too. Easily top ten worthy.

    I finally made it to Michael's in Oak Park last night and it was great - another to add to my top places list. It had a familiar aroma (not one I particularly care too much for) that I've had at other places but I couldn't place it. It still didn't stop it from being a great sandwich. Fries were excellent. I was also at Chickie's earlier in the day and did something I promised I do if I ever returned. Chickie's has long been in my top 5 for beefs (along with the fresh cut fries that taste like they are cooked in beef fat). But I don't care for their giardiniera. Not even the hot oil works. So we brought some Marconi along that did the trick and it was as good as ever.
  • Post #877 - February 4th, 2020, 2:29 pm
    Post #877 - February 4th, 2020, 2:29 pm Post #877 - February 4th, 2020, 2:29 pm
    I have a bus to catch to go grocery shopping at Jewel. Certain food coupons have an approaching expiration date thereupon.
    So for now, I will just drop in these images of the original Buona Beef on Roosevelt & Oak Park in Berwyn. I was attending the "Brewers Rock Fest" at Wire, an intriguing live music venue just west of it (& just across the road from Kinslahger Brwg. :)). Image Image
    Valuable links for survival, without a monitization attempt: http://74.115.231.53/~pudgym29/bookmark4.html
  • Post #878 - February 6th, 2020, 10:01 am
    Post #878 - February 6th, 2020, 10:01 am Post #878 - February 6th, 2020, 10:01 am
    Wasn't sure whether this breaking news story belongs here or in "Openings & Closings"....
  • Post #879 - February 10th, 2020, 6:27 pm
    Post #879 - February 10th, 2020, 6:27 pm Post #879 - February 10th, 2020, 6:27 pm
    Gonnella Baking lays off 40 workers as it stops fresh bread deliveries and transitions into frozen dough

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/business ... story.html
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #880 - February 11th, 2020, 8:25 am
    Post #880 - February 11th, 2020, 8:25 am Post #880 - February 11th, 2020, 8:25 am
    Dave148 wrote:
    Gonnella Baking lays off 40 workers as it stops fresh bread deliveries and transitions into frozen dough

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/business ... story.html


    And all the Italian beef lovers shed a tear. I don't know what Gonnella is thinking but this is really sad - another bit of history replaced by frozen dough??
  • Post #881 - February 11th, 2020, 1:26 pm
    Post #881 - February 11th, 2020, 1:26 pm Post #881 - February 11th, 2020, 1:26 pm
    chicagojim wrote:
    Dave148 wrote:
    Gonnella Baking lays off 40 workers as it stops fresh bread deliveries and transitions into frozen dough

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/business ... story.html

    And all the Italian beef lovers shed a tear. I don't know what Gonnella is thinking but this is really sad - another bit of history replaced by frozen dough??

    Couldn’t compete with the aggressive market expansion of Turano in the Chicago area.

    I live not far from the Turano facility in Berwyn and have been amazed at their continuous expansion. First the piece by piece additions on the southside of Roosevelt, then the truck facility on Harlem and now a new corporate office on the northside of Roosevelt.
    "Very good... but not my favorite." ~ Johnny Depp as Roux the Gypsy in Chocolat
  • Post #882 - February 20th, 2020, 4:00 pm
    Post #882 - February 20th, 2020, 4:00 pm Post #882 - February 20th, 2020, 4:00 pm
    It's nice to find a solid beef sandwich in an out of the way place you didn’t know existed. Casciani’s Pizzeria sits in the middle of a bunch of warehouses and industrial lots and doesn’t look like much from the outside, but they’re serving good sandwich with homemade ingredients:
    Image

    Beef is semi shredded and very tender, and the gravy is very savory. The giard is clearly homemade with lots of celery, and includes the seldom seen addition of black olives. Actually I’m not sure I’ve ever seen black olives in a giard, only green. Anyway, solid sandwich that’s not my favorite but absolutely worth a stop.
    Image

    The pizza’s not bad either. Crust a little too thick for me but it’s got top notch cheese and sausage.
    Image

    Nice lunch from a clearly old school place who’s still doing it right.

    Casciani’s Pizzeria
    9200 Joliet Rd, Hodgkins, IL 60525
  • Post #883 - February 25th, 2020, 3:53 pm
    Post #883 - February 25th, 2020, 3:53 pm Post #883 - February 25th, 2020, 3:53 pm
    A brief footnote here that I have restored my images of Casciani's Pizzeria in this thread. :)
    Last edited by pudgym29 on March 13th, 2020, 6:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    Valuable links for survival, without a monitization attempt: http://74.115.231.53/~pudgym29/bookmark4.html
  • Post #884 - February 25th, 2020, 7:27 pm
    Post #884 - February 25th, 2020, 7:27 pm Post #884 - February 25th, 2020, 7:27 pm
    Rather than add-on to my place holder reply above, I'll append this jaw-dropping consideration separately.
    With Gonnella no longer baking fresh bread, that would seemingly mean all the shacks who were serving their italian beef on it will have to change their bread supplier.
    • Will this change the recipe?
    • Will it change its preparation?
    • Will the sandwich eating episode change for the worse?
    • Who will they switch to?
    Turano?
    Who was #3?
    Most dauntingly, will all of these italian beef shacks have to be re-tasted and re-evaluated? :twisted:
    Valuable links for survival, without a monitization attempt: http://74.115.231.53/~pudgym29/bookmark4.html
  • Post #885 - February 28th, 2020, 7:28 am
    Post #885 - February 28th, 2020, 7:28 am Post #885 - February 28th, 2020, 7:28 am
    https://chicago.eater.com/maps/best-ita ... es-chicago

    A lot of thread/board favorites on this list.

    Has anyone been to Decent Beef in TO Market? Have definitely been intrigued since I've heard about Kevin Hickey's beef-focused project but have yet to make it to the market....but the (at least) daily IG posts definitely make me crave it often!
  • Post #886 - February 28th, 2020, 7:42 am
    Post #886 - February 28th, 2020, 7:42 am Post #886 - February 28th, 2020, 7:42 am
    ziggy wrote:https://chicago.eater.com/maps/best-italian-beef-sandwiches-chicago

    A lot of thread/board favorites on this list.

    Has anyone been to Decent Beef in TO Market? Have definitely been intrigued since I've heard about Kevin Hickey's beef-focused project but have yet to make it to the market....but the (at least) daily IG posts definitely make me crave it often!


    Eater has been recycling that exact same article for at least 2 years. They occasionally remember to update articles it before re-posting them but more than once I've seen one of their "Best Of" lists with a place that closed months ago.
  • Post #887 - February 28th, 2020, 7:53 am
    Post #887 - February 28th, 2020, 7:53 am Post #887 - February 28th, 2020, 7:53 am
    zoid wrote:
    ziggy wrote:https://chicago.eater.com/maps/best-italian-beef-sandwiches-chicago

    A lot of thread/board favorites on this list.

    Has anyone been to Decent Beef in TO Market? Have definitely been intrigued since I've heard about Kevin Hickey's beef-focused project but have yet to make it to the market....but the (at least) daily IG posts definitely make me crave it often!


    Eater has been recycling that exact same article for at least 2 years. They occasionally remember to update articles it before re-posting them but more than once I've seen one of their "Best Of" lists with a place that closed months ago.


    Well it's not the exact same this time because there is an update...the place I mentioned. So do you care to actually add something constructive to the conversation?
  • Post #888 - February 28th, 2020, 10:23 am
    Post #888 - February 28th, 2020, 10:23 am Post #888 - February 28th, 2020, 10:23 am
    Decent Beef is pretty decadent. It's much more rich than the usual beef, and much more expensive as a result, being made with prime rib. To my taste it strikes a nice balance between "updated" and "traditional" that I enjoyed. The smaller one is plenty for a meal, and truthfully it's not much worse than the original Al's in terms of price. Giardiniera was good, too. TO in general is like this: more expensive than comparable places elsewhere, but not bad for the area, quick, and generally well-rendered, and all in one place.
  • Post #889 - February 28th, 2020, 11:36 am
    Post #889 - February 28th, 2020, 11:36 am Post #889 - February 28th, 2020, 11:36 am
    mtgl wrote:Decent Beef is pretty decadent. It's much more rich than the usual beef, and much more expensive as a result, being made with prime rib. To my taste it strikes a nice balance between "updated" and "traditional" that I enjoyed. The smaller one is plenty for a meal, and truthfully it's not much worse than the original Al's in terms of price. Giardiniera was good, too. TO in general is like this: more expensive than comparable places elsewhere, but not bad for the area, quick, and generally well-rendered, and all in one place.

    I might call this a prime rib french dip.

    Scratch Kitchen & Lounge
    7445 W, Madison St, Forest Park

    ... used to have it as a weekend special. not any more. :(

    Big Guy's Sausage Stand
    7021 Roosevelt Rd, Berwyn

    ... too.
    "Very good... but not my favorite." ~ Johnny Depp as Roux the Gypsy in Chocolat
  • Post #890 - February 28th, 2020, 12:33 pm
    Post #890 - February 28th, 2020, 12:33 pm Post #890 - February 28th, 2020, 12:33 pm
    ziggy wrote:
    zoid wrote:
    ziggy wrote:https://chicago.eater.com/maps/best-italian-beef-sandwiches-chicago

    A lot of thread/board favorites on this list.

    Has anyone been to Decent Beef in TO Market? Have definitely been intrigued since I've heard about Kevin Hickey's beef-focused project but have yet to make it to the market....but the (at least) daily IG posts definitely make me crave it often!


    Eater has been recycling that exact same article for at least 2 years. They occasionally remember to update articles it before re-posting them but more than once I've seen one of their "Best Of" lists with a place that closed months ago.


    Well it's not the exact same this time because there is an update...the place I mentioned. So do you care to actually add something constructive to the conversation?

    I did
  • Post #891 - February 28th, 2020, 8:57 pm
    Post #891 - February 28th, 2020, 8:57 pm Post #891 - February 28th, 2020, 8:57 pm
    zoid wrote:
    ziggy wrote:
    zoid wrote:
    ziggy wrote:https://chicago.eater.com/maps/best-italian-beef-sandwiches-chicago

    A lot of thread/board favorites on this list.

    Has anyone been to Decent Beef in TO Market? Have definitely been intrigued since I've heard about Kevin Hickey's beef-focused project but have yet to make it to the market....but the (at least) daily IG posts definitely make me crave it often!


    Eater has been recycling that exact same article for at least 2 years. They occasionally remember to update articles it before re-posting them but more than once I've seen one of their "Best Of" lists with a place that closed months ago.


    Well it's not the exact same this time because there is an update...the place I mentioned. So do you care to actually add something constructive to the conversation?

    I did
    I agree - zoid did offer something constructive to the conversation. That list is recycled and there is no way Roma's belongs on that list anymore since they sold it and the quality went downhill. Sadly Mr. Beef and Pizza, one of my top 5 stalwarts, may be slipping. They have new owners and many people are complaining of much skimpier beefs. I've only had it once since the change and I sort of felt something was different (I even noticed instead of one generous size of fries, there are now two but the small is the cost of the old size of course). If the quality stays the same there is still hope, though it will be more money for the food. Oh well, so you won't get a giant sandwich anymore. It'll be like Al's and Johnnie's - coincidentally two more of my top 5.
  • Post #892 - March 2nd, 2020, 11:14 am
    Post #892 - March 2nd, 2020, 11:14 am Post #892 - March 2nd, 2020, 11:14 am
    Pretty good list. I’ve visited 16.

    https://chicago.eater.com/maps/best-ita ... es-chicago

    I haven’t been to Roma’s and an sorry to hear they might of slipped. :( Still going to give them a try.

    Tony’s on the southside has been getting some good reviews lately and especially their Breaded Steak Sandwich.
    "Very good... but not my favorite." ~ Johnny Depp as Roux the Gypsy in Chocolat
  • Post #893 - March 2nd, 2020, 11:59 am
    Post #893 - March 2nd, 2020, 11:59 am Post #893 - March 2nd, 2020, 11:59 am
    Ram4 wrote:list is recycled and there is no way Roma's belongs on that list anymore since they sold it and the quality went downhill.

    I was last at Roma's on Cicero mid December 2019 and thought it damn good, got a combo, they make their own Italian sausage, and tender juicy beef. Link If its new owners I got the impression its the daughter and son in-law of the original owner.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #894 - March 2nd, 2020, 12:47 pm
    Post #894 - March 2nd, 2020, 12:47 pm Post #894 - March 2nd, 2020, 12:47 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    Ram4 wrote:list is recycled and there is no way Roma's belongs on that list anymore since they sold it and the quality went downhill.

    I was last at Roma's on Cicero mid December 2019 and thought it damn good, got a combo, they make their own Italian sausage, and tender juicy beef. Link If its new owners I got the impression its the daughter and son in-law of the original owner.
    Fair enough Gary. I am going by what others have told me about Roma's since the change. The same said to avoid Mr. Beef and Pizza as well but their main gripe is the size of the beef compared to the old days. My answer is if it tastes the same, that's the main thing. You can always order two.
  • Post #895 - March 2nd, 2020, 1:05 pm
    Post #895 - March 2nd, 2020, 1:05 pm Post #895 - March 2nd, 2020, 1:05 pm
    Ram4 wrote:The same said to avoid Mr. Beef and Pizza as well but their main gripe is the size of the beef compared to the old days. My answer is if it tastes the same, that's the main thing. You can always order two.

    I was last at Mr. Beef and Pizza, N Harlem Ave December 6th 2019, thought it tip-top. After a beef, soda and fries I briefly considered ordering another beef but did not. No idea on price, it wasn't outlandish or it would have registered, and, anyway, I was full 20-minutes later after my stomach caught up to my glutinous mind. :) Link
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #896 - March 15th, 2020, 3:06 pm
    Post #896 - March 15th, 2020, 3:06 pm Post #896 - March 15th, 2020, 3:06 pm
    Another great sandwich from Bari on Grand. This has gotta be if not the top beef, at least one of the top 5 beefs in the city. Everything about it feels made from scratch, probably because it is. A giant portion of shaved, tender roast beef that's never overcooked or tough on a nice chewy Italian roll, dripping with juices:
    Image
    The gravy is very rich with a deep roasted meat flavor to it and a scattering of beef shreds in the bottom of the cup - clearly no bullion here!
    Image
    The only thing I don't like at Bari is their homemade hot giardinera, it's just too mushy and it has a fermented flavor I don't care for. But that's OK, the perfectly cooked sweet peppers make up for it.

    Long live the Bari Italian beef!
  • Post #897 - March 15th, 2020, 5:56 pm
    Post #897 - March 15th, 2020, 5:56 pm Post #897 - March 15th, 2020, 5:56 pm
    I've hit the majority of the top beef joints, but I still have a handful of the grocery type stores left including Bari, Notolli, Riviera, and Serreli's. I've had Freddy's (Cicero) and Frangella (Palos Park) and both of their beefs were excellent.
  • Post #898 - March 15th, 2020, 6:32 pm
    Post #898 - March 15th, 2020, 6:32 pm Post #898 - March 15th, 2020, 6:32 pm
    I’m a big fan of Riviera’s IB. I drive past Mr. Beef to get Riv’s.
  • Post #899 - March 16th, 2020, 12:07 pm
    Post #899 - March 16th, 2020, 12:07 pm Post #899 - March 16th, 2020, 12:07 pm
    Ram4 wrote:I've hit the majority of the top beef joints, but I still have a handful of the grocery type stores left including Bari, Notolli, Riviera, and Serreli's. I've had Freddy's (Cicero) and Frangella (Palos Park) and both of their beefs were excellent.


    I feel that in general, a beef from a random deli is going to be better than a beef from a random stand. Like if you had to pick between a deli and a stand with no other information available, go with the deli every time. I've never had a bad deli IB and there have been some great ones - like Bari.
  • Post #900 - March 16th, 2020, 12:46 pm
    Post #900 - March 16th, 2020, 12:46 pm Post #900 - March 16th, 2020, 12:46 pm
    eating while walking wrote:
    Ram4 wrote:I've hit the majority of the top beef joints, but I still have a handful of the grocery type stores left including Bari, Notolli, Riviera, and Serreli's. I've had Freddy's (Cicero) and Frangella (Palos Park) and both of their beefs were excellent.


    I feel that in general, a beef from a random deli is going to be better than a beef from a random stand. Like if you had to pick between a deli and a stand with no other information available, go with the deli every time. I've never had a bad deli IB and there have been some great ones - like Bari.
    Ironically I know a guy who's been to as many beef joints as I have and he doesn't care for the deli beefs as much as the beef stands. I look forward to trying them out later this year.

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