Chicago beats Philly twice: Sandwiches and now hockey

June 10, 2010


Al's Italian Beef

Now that we've established our hockey supremacy, it's time to add a little insult to injury. While some will claim that the Philly cheesesteak is one of the best in the country, there really is no comparison to our native Italian beef. Please don't tell me how great Pat's or Geno's is. Those little pieces of frozen steak, heated on a flat top grill then covered in Whiz or provolone? Even the bread is inferior to what we have in Chicago. I've been to both, and any local will tell you that John's Roast Pork rises far above both of them. In fact, if you ever go, you have to try their Pork Italian sandwich with broccoli rabe, but I digress.


Cheesesteak from John's Roast Pork (photo by Steve Dolinsky)

Chicago's Italian beef has roots that stretch back to The Depression, the Union Stockyards and of course, Little Italy. Just like the iconic deep dish and the Chicago dog, it is the Beef that defines us, whether it be hot, sweet, juicy or dry (or a little of each). I wanted to share with you one of my all-time favorite stories that I've done for WBEZ. This was one of my gems, a real labor of love, produced by Justin Kaufmann. It originally aired on "848." Hope you enjoy it, and Go Hawks!!

Italian Beef