Italian NJ!

Double Chili Cheeseburger
2013/01/23 10:37:06
A place that specializes in Chicago-Style Italian Beef sandwiches has recently opened in West Caldwell NJ. It got an excellent review today in the Star Ledger. Sounds like a future lunch destination, for sure.
post edited by ken8038 - 2013/01/23 12:09:15
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/01/23 12:26:17
You could still make it in time for a late lunch today!  My vote is for the beef & sausage combo...
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/01/23 13:12:24
Chips & Dips sound good. I'd pass on the flips (turkey burgers) but they have Boylan soda & seltzer so I look forward to going when it's not -127 degrees.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/03 12:23:08
I went to Red's for lunch on Friday. I gave it a B. First of all, the "large" hot beef sandwhich, fries, and bottle of diet soda came to $15. I know the rent has got to be paid, and the food is homemade, etc etc, but the sandwich and fry order were small. It just didn't seem like good value to me.
The beef was very good, but I don't have much to compare it to. I was only in Chicago two times ever, most recently about 20 years ago, and as far as I can remember I didn't have a hot beef, just a deep dish pizza and a game at Wrigley field. I did have a hot beef about 5 years ago at a short-lived place in Linden calls J's Beef.
The beef here was better than J's, but there just wasn't that much of it. The vegetable mix dressing and roasted pepper went well with the sandwich. The fries were good too, but a rather small order for $3.25. And, altho they do have Boylan sodas, they don't have any fountain sodas. Much as I like craft beers and craft soda, give me a fountain diet cola (any brand) with a fast food meal and I'm happy. I can have Boylan sodas at home, I can't have a fountain cola at home.
I fell into a conversation with an older couple at the table next to me, and thier opinion was pretty much the same as mine. If a "large" sandwich seems like too small to a couple about 80 years old, it must indeed be too small.
In short, since it's unique in NJ, I'd go back if a craving for a Hot Beef Sandwhich hit me, but my socks are still on.
Since I was in the area, I made shopping stops at Calandra's Bakery  and the new Corrados Market (smaller than the original, but more "gourmet" oriented, although I hate that word) on Rt 46 in Fairlfield. So it was a good food day all around.
ann peeples
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/03 13:11:50
Unfortunately, food is expensive today. Period.Look at the price of beef.Look at the price of milk Look at mayonnaise, for crying out loud! I will frequent a place that has awesome beef..and will pay for it. I do find 15 dollars excessive.
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/03 14:58:06
Too many wildly popular local favorite LOADED sandwiches that are much much less expensive in the area to expect this place to thrive. It happens again & again.
Junior Burger
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/09 21:45:04
I was brought up in Chicago and now live in NJ. I looked at her menu and she will not make it unless she drops her prices. The owner has a takehome special which is one pound of beef for $ 30 which is way overpriced. In Chicago, you would pay about 12 dollars for the same thing. Don't forget Goodman's Deli in Berkeley hts for  real italian beef and Vienna dogs on Rosen buns at much  better prices.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/10 08:34:14
<<Don't forget Goodman's Deli in Berkeley hts for real italian beef and Vienna dogs on Rosen buns at much better prices. >>
Yes, I did forget about Goodman's, so thanks. I haven't been there since they updated the menu, but I was aware that they had added the Chicago items. That's only about 15 minutes away for me, sounds like a future lunch spot.
Goodman's on line menu doesn't mention the Chicago items, but I think somebody said (maybe on a Roadfood post) that they are off-menu.
post edited by ken8038 - 2013/02/10 11:24:11
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/10 12:52:40
High prices and small portions do not inspire a road trip
Filet Mignon
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/10 14:22:36
I live near a Portillo's which I consider the best Italian beef in Chicago. I have been going to Portillo's ever since Dick Portillo opened his stand in 1963 and a cop friend insisted I tried in maybe 1968? They currently charge $4.85 for a very generous Italian beef. That's usually more than I can eat but now and then I'll get onion rings.
Junior Burger
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/10 18:55:04
Portillos is very good. They don't make the beef at each store. They have a central commissary where it is made and shipped to the stores. I used to like Carm's and Mr. Beef when I lived there. I hear that Captain Nemo's makes an excellent beef.
Ken let us know what you think of Goodman's italian beef. I believe that he uses Turano brand sub rolls from Chicago. His menu doesn't mention the beef. His website needs improvement whic is ironic cause the owner is an ex-corporate IT guy.
Filet Mignon
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/02/11 14:55:25

Portillos is very good. They don't make the beef at each store. They have a central commissary where it is made and shipped to the stores.

Yes, I live a mile or so away and I see the Portillo truck deliver daily if not several times a day, their commissary is close by. I have been to corporate functions that serve Portillo's beef for a large number of people and I haven't noticed any difference in quality. They run a pretty tight ship and maintain excellent quality and service!
Junior Burger
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/06/09 01:20:21
I lust for an Italian Beef like I enjoyed when I lived in Chicagoland, in the early 70s. 
I realize this thread is a bit old, but felt like reinforcing the remarks about the pricing. $15 for a sandwich and a side is Maui level pricing and even so, better keep you satisfied for hours.
First post.  
Double Cheeseburger
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/06/09 06:18:17
Portillo's is by far not the best italian beef in Chicago...Al's, Johnny's, Nick & Vito are but a few of the beef places that make Portillo's look like amateurs.   Plus, portillo's still haven't mastered the wet beef concept yet...way overrated.
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/06/09 08:51:35
Welcome to Roadfood sbh!

NJ would GLADLY have a Portillo's.
Re:Italian NJ! 2013/08/30 08:37:21
This recipe was good as is,but I now use it combined with 3 other recipes for french dip and it is great,I use all of the ingredients in this recipe except use only 2 cups of water and leave out both the salt and onion salt,I add 2 cups onion sliced thin sauted in 1/4 cup butter ,1/2 cup soy sauce, 1 can coke[do not use diet or an off brand] 1 12 oz. can dark beer, 1 can beef broth, 1 can condesned french onion soup [campbells is best] I use the zesty soup mix. I try to get at least a 5 to 6 pound roast rump is o.k. if its choice otherwise I use a sirlion tip roast, this is much cheaper and less fat than a regular sirlion. I also add italian seasoning, basil, oregano,thyme,and white pepper. I slice the meat very thin like a french dip. update I have started leaving the water out and adding another can of low sodium beef broth.