LTH Home

  Johnnie's Beef [Chicago sandwiches]

  Johnnie's Beef [Chicago sandwiches]
  • Forum HomeLocked Topic BackTop
    Page 2 of 2 
  • Post #31 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:35 pm
    Post #31 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:35 pm Post #31 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:35 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    Cathy2 wrote:Wouldn't this be the best time to include Johnnie's second location in Arlington Heights?

    Cathy,

    As valued as George R's opinion on all things Italian Beef one data point on the Arlington Heights Johnnie's does not a tag along GNR make. I'd also be interested to know if the AH branch is a franchise.

    Enjoy,
    Gary


    Hi,

    I have the impression it is similar to the circumstances of Lao Sze Chuan Chinatown/Downers Grove. Al's has been franchising, Johnnie's just simply opened a second location.

    Regards,
    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 #32 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:45 pm
    Post #32 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:45 pm Post #32 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:45 pm
    I've been to the Arlington Heights location. It doesn't have the atmosphere, but the food is just about indistinguishable.

    Of course, asking whether the AH store should be included in the award overlooks the fact that the Elmwood Park location's certificate has been up at the Arlington Heights location for a couple of years now.
    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 #33 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:53 pm
    Post #33 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:53 pm Post #33 - February 22nd, 2008, 4:53 pm
    Gary is right. We need more data points. Also, I don't know whether it's the same ownership.

    My recollection is that there have been several mostly positive comments about the AH location, but not enough to warrant GNR status.

    I don't want to hijack this thread. The Arlington Heights Johnnie's is worth further exploration. If it does consistently match the original then it could be nominated for it's own separate GNR award.
    Where there’s smoke, there may be salmon.
  • Post #34 - February 22nd, 2008, 5:07 pm
    Post #34 - February 22nd, 2008, 5:07 pm Post #34 - February 22nd, 2008, 5:07 pm
    During summer evenings, I basically live in line at the Johnnie's on North. A consummate GNR. Can't speak to the AH location.
  • Post #35 - February 22nd, 2008, 5:10 pm
    Post #35 - February 22nd, 2008, 5:10 pm Post #35 - February 22nd, 2008, 5:10 pm
    Mike G wrote:Of course, asking whether the AH store should be included in the award overlooks the fact that the Elmwood Park location's certificate has been up at the Arlington Heights location for a couple of years now.


    I knew that, I just wasn't sure if I was the best person to spill the beans. :)

    Regards,
    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 #36 - February 22nd, 2008, 6:11 pm
    Post #36 - February 22nd, 2008, 6:11 pm Post #36 - February 22nd, 2008, 6:11 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    Cathy2 wrote:Wouldn't this be the best time to include Johnnie's second location in Arlington Heights?

    Cathy,

    As valued as George R's opinion on all things Italian Beef one data point on the Arlington Heights Johnnie's does not a tag along GNR make. I'd also be interested to know if the AH branch is a franchise.

    Enjoy,
    Gary


    No, it is not a franchise - same owners.

    I actually have eaten in AH a number of times, actually more times than in EP and while it lacks that ineffable quality added by the atmosphere of the original - and that really does make the sandwich taste better somehow - I am pretty sure if I closed my eyes I could not tell the difference.

    The practice is to let the original nominator determine whether the new or added locations qualify, so I will contact Pigmon.

    d
    with opinions on Johnnies for me and just me, and info on the GNR process for the GNRs
  • Post #37 - February 22nd, 2008, 6:13 pm
    Post #37 - February 22nd, 2008, 6:13 pm Post #37 - February 22nd, 2008, 6:13 pm
    I haven't had a chance to eat at Johnnie's for over a year, as my travels rarely take me into that part of the city and being on LTH has meant that I've been branching out and trying more places on weekend afternoons. But it is the epitome of a fast-food GNR and I heartily support its renewal.
    "Fried chicken should unify us, as opposed to tearing us apart. " - Bomani Jones
  • Post #38 - March 11th, 2008, 12:38 pm
    Post #38 - March 11th, 2008, 12:38 pm Post #38 - March 11th, 2008, 12:38 pm
    The original nominator has not replied, so we are left to decide whether to expand the GNR designation for Johnnies to include the Arlington Heights location. So far it looks like only a few of us - two in this thread have made comments specifically about the food there - have visited Johnnies in Arlington Heights. Not enough to verify that it is GNR-worthy. If any other people have gone to Johnnies in AH and would like to comment, your voices can help to determine whether we should award the GNR to both locations, or just stick with Elmwood Park.

    Absent any more comments from other posters, I agree that Arlington Heights cannot be included under the GNR umbrella.

    And to clarify, while the GNR certificate was up at Arlington Heights for a year or so, it does not appear to be on display there currently.

    d
    for the GNRs
  • Post #39 - March 11th, 2008, 7:11 pm
    Post #39 - March 11th, 2008, 7:11 pm Post #39 - March 11th, 2008, 7:11 pm
    dicksond wrote:The original nominator has not replied, so we are left to decide whether to expand the GNR designation for Johnnies to include the Arlington Heights location.

    D,

    It appears the original nominator, Pigmon, answered that very question in this post.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #40 - March 12th, 2008, 12:28 pm
    Post #40 - March 12th, 2008, 12:28 pm Post #40 - March 12th, 2008, 12:28 pm
    I have been to the Arlington Heights location twice over many years and found the food the same as the Elmwood Park location.

    -ramon
  • Post #41 - March 19th, 2010, 12:56 pm
    Post #41 - March 19th, 2010, 12:56 pm Post #41 - March 19th, 2010, 12:56 pm
    I love Johnnie's. I constantly go back and forth over whether Johnnie's or Al's is my favorite beef in the city.. the winner is usually the one I just finished eating. The quality has not dropped, and I see no reason why it shouldn't be renewed.

    I will say this: Having eaten at Johnnie's AH and Johnnie's EP a couple days apart, the Elmwood Park branch is a notch above the Arlington Heights branch. This might be due to turnover, but I think it's also just a more consistent product.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #42 - March 23rd, 2010, 2:56 pm
    Post #42 - March 23rd, 2010, 2:56 pm Post #42 - March 23rd, 2010, 2:56 pm
    I, too, love Johnnie's and agree with gleam's comments regarding Johnnie's and Al's. I prefer Johnnie's beef, but Al's wins on fries and summertime proximity to Italian ice. Anytime we're even close to Elmwood Park, I'll insist on including a stop at Johnnie's

    Great beef, well-seasoned, and tasty giardinera. The combo is pretty great, too. (Ok, so the fries are terrible. I've just had to learn to not order them.)

    Ronna
  • Post #43 - March 23rd, 2010, 6:49 pm
    Post #43 - March 23rd, 2010, 6:49 pm Post #43 - March 23rd, 2010, 6:49 pm
    Johnnie's has my favorite Beef and my favorite Saaaa-zeech all with the best giardinera. Both so good, it is the only place I'll order a combo. They do it the way it should be done. I heartily endorse the renewal. . . and my most frequent visits are to the Arlington Heights location, where the food is just as perfect as the original.
    Today I caught that fish again, that lovely silver prince of fishes,
    And once again he offered me, if I would only set him free—
    Any one of a number of wonderful wishes... He was delicious! - Shel Silverstein
  • Post #44 - March 24th, 2010, 1:40 pm
    Post #44 - March 24th, 2010, 1:40 pm Post #44 - March 24th, 2010, 1:40 pm
    Though they are a haul from Naperville, I still make it to both Johnnie's location 3 or 4 times a year - pretty much whenever I am in the neighborhood. I suppose there are other good places nearby (like Mitsuwa near the AH location) and every once in a while I am tempted to visit some other place, but mostly I hit Johnnies whenever I can.

    Not just a GNR, world class.

    And to return to the Al's versus Johnnies question - I need to try one more of each before I could even hope to make a decision. Probably one more after that, too, and even then I may have to sample some more... Can I get back to you on that in a few years?
    d
    Feeling (south) loopy
  • Post #45 - March 24th, 2010, 1:45 pm
    Post #45 - March 24th, 2010, 1:45 pm Post #45 - March 24th, 2010, 1:45 pm
    Johnnie's is indispensable. The beef is a conditio sine qua non.
  • Post #46 - March 24th, 2010, 7:38 pm
    Post #46 - March 24th, 2010, 7:38 pm Post #46 - March 24th, 2010, 7:38 pm
    Not my favorite but a place I really enjoy. That said, this place is beloved around here and on that basis, I believe it should be renewed.

    =R=
    There's a horse loose in a hospital -- JM

    I am not interested in how I would evaluate the Springbank in a blind tasting. Every spirit has its story, and I include it in my evaluation, just as I do with human beings. --Thad Vogler

    I'll be the tastiest pork cutlet bowl ever --Yuri Katsuki

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #47 - March 28th, 2010, 8:44 pm
    Post #47 - March 28th, 2010, 8:44 pm Post #47 - March 28th, 2010, 8:44 pm
    If I had to choose a last meal, it would probably be a combo, extra juicy, with sweet peppers and a large Italian ice from Johnnie's Beef. The charcoal flavor in their sausage truly sets Johnnie's apart from all other Italian beef/sausage joints. Their sweet peppers are the best I've ever had, and normally I don't even like sweet peppers anywhere else. Johnnie's will always be an institution here in Elmwood Park. Are their beefs smaller compared to the old days ? Yes, they are smaller; but, that charcoal taste is simply unmatched anywhere else.

    The Travel Channel Food Wars Italian Beef episode should have put Johnnie's vs. Al's or Mr. Beef. Instead, they showcased Al's vs. Mr. Beef, and Mr. Beef won. The producers of the show interviewed Food Critic Steve Dolinsky from ABC channel 7 about the history of Italian Beef. What they should have done was ask him what his favorite beef joint is: The answer would have been Johnnie's. If my memory serves me correctly, his autographed photo is inside Johnnie's stating that Johnnie's Beef is the best. Similarly, Men's Health magazine last year named Johnnie's as the greatest sandwich in America. Bottom Line: The Travel Channel should have had Johnnie's vs. Al's or Mr. Beef, or anyone else for that matter.
  • Post #48 - March 29th, 2010, 10:14 am
    Post #48 - March 29th, 2010, 10:14 am Post #48 - March 29th, 2010, 10:14 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Not my favorite but a place I really enjoy. That said, this place is beloved around here and on that basis, I believe it should be renewed.

    =R=


    Johnnie's actually is my favorite place for IB, and as REB mentioned above, "proximity" is a factor (nice when a GNR is actually in my neighborhood), so I have to applaud renewal, plus I have a soft spot for the place because it’s the first restaurant I ever posted about on a food board.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #49 - March 30th, 2010, 12:01 pm
    Post #49 - March 30th, 2010, 12:01 pm Post #49 - March 30th, 2010, 12:01 pm
    Deepdish wrote:
    If I had to choose a last meal, it would probably be a combo, extra juicy, with sweet peppers and a large Italian ice from Johnnie's Beef.


    For me it would be a combo PLUS an IB PLUS a sausage, all from Johnnie's.
    Where there’s smoke, there may be salmon.
  • Post #50 - March 30th, 2010, 3:10 pm
    Post #50 - March 30th, 2010, 3:10 pm Post #50 - March 30th, 2010, 3:10 pm
    Hey George R,

    I think if my wife weren't with me, I think I'd go for that 3rd beef, too. It's embarrassing, but hey- I love food, what can I say ?!?!? There is NOTHING like Johnnie's on a warm summer night with an Italian Ice.
  • Post #51 - April 3rd, 2010, 11:13 am
    Post #51 - April 3rd, 2010, 11:13 am Post #51 - April 3rd, 2010, 11:13 am
    Hi,

    Mom2 and I once visited this haunted hotel in Fox Lake. I ate there to spend a little time looking around with no expectations of any good food. Mom2 uncharacteristically ordered an Italian Beef (IB) sandwich. I knew it wasn't going to be any good, but it was her choice. It was bad, bad, bad.

    To wash away those bad memories and put her on the right IB path. I took her to Johnnie's IB in Arlington Heights. She was delighted with her substantially improved sandwich. I told it was a Great Neighborhood pick from a certain website, cause I sure don't know my IB. Fortunately, I knew where the experts hang out.

    Mom2 and I are an enthusiastic thumbs up ... oh, and my Mom, too.

    Regards,
    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 #52 - April 3rd, 2010, 6:32 pm
    Post #52 - April 3rd, 2010, 6:32 pm Post #52 - April 3rd, 2010, 6:32 pm
    LTH,

    My current IB preference is Al's, but Johnnie's is near and dear to my clogged artery heart, a solid GNR.

    Johnnie's Beef, count me a fan!

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #53 - April 4th, 2010, 9:31 am
    Post #53 - April 4th, 2010, 9:31 am Post #53 - April 4th, 2010, 9:31 am
    Even after a long drive from the Arlington Heights location - The sandwiches were delicious on Thursday evening when my husband brought them home.

    He also brought, along with 2 beefs - hot and sweet, a "Pepper Sandwich". Wow. Really rich, very herby, totally delicious. I'm no vegetarian, but there is a good veggie option at Johnnie's.

Contact

About

Team

Advertize

Close

Chat

Articles

Guide

Events

more