I did a YELP and read all the raves on Al's Italian beef sandwiches. I think I was more intrigued by how your suppose to eat them. LOL see below:
Put your sandwich on the counter and stand in front of it, with your chest about 12 inches from the edge of the counter
Lean forward so your chest is at a 45-degree angle to the counter (Note: if you're wearing a tie, make sure it's tucked inside your shirt)
Pick up your sandwich, resting your elbows on the counter
Angle the sandwich at a 45-degree angle to the counter, with the top end towards your mouth. (Imagine making a triangle: the counter is the bottom, your head and chest are one side, the sandwich is another)
Eat and enjoy. For best results, keep the sandwich wrapped in the wax paper it most likely came in, unwrapping it as you go.
I ordered mine with hot peppers instead of the mild ones and gravy on the side. I didn't really care for a certain spice they used. I am not familiar with it could it have been cardamom? The beef was minced really fine. It did not really resemble beef, and the gravy was extra oily. Was it suppose to be like that? Idk, this is my first famous Italian beef from Al's beef in San Jose, CA
I bragged about this place to my wife because they do have a tasty Chicago dog small but tasty. So I decided to pick her up for a lunch date. I told her all that I had read about this famous Italian beef sandwich and when she took a bite, she said nothing. No sounds of hmmm good. Nothing. I observed her taking another bite and nothing. I was feeling the same way. big deal and or yuk, only she was being polite by not saying anything to burst my bubble. She would rather not say nothing, if she did not have something nice to say. I reassured her I was feeling the same way as her. I apologized as this restaurant literally is on the other side of town.
I am pretty sure they don't use those kinds of rolls in Chicago. The roll did not hold up the minced, more like pureed beef and oil, I mean gravy. The bread got all soggy. I HATE soggy buns! It was bad. My wife is the manager at a prestigious firm so she had on her skirt suit and jewelry. I could tell she was very uncomfortable with all the grease on her fingers and the look of disgust on her face. Thank goodness they had a wash room. I felt bad. This was an epic FLOP for me. I felt so bad I had to take her to Krispy Cream donuts to buy her something sweet in order to get the taste out of our mouths.
I am grateful for Al's beef pricey and small yet tasty Chicago style hot dog. I will give the Italian beef sandwich another try but, at a different restaurant, some other time. But for now from what I tried that day two weeks ago. I say that Al's Italian beef sandwich in San Jose, CA is NOT for me nor my wife. I'll stick to a Chicago style dog any day....