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Mar 1, 2006 11:09 AM

Italian Beef at O'Hare Airport

  • j

I have the privilege of spending several hours in O'Hare airport and am hoping to find an Italian Beef Sandwich which will remind me of Al's #1 in the Loop?

I have enough time to traverse the several terminals, so terminal choice is not an issue.

Can one of you denizens direct me to the "best" one at the Airport?

Thanks in advance...

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  1. Based on my knowledge of O'Hare restaurants, you are out of luck.

    Wolfgang Puck Cafe, in my experience, has decent food, and might be worth a visit. I believe it is located right after the security checkpoint for AA gates.

    3 Replies
    1. re: jj

      No Beef that I know of at ORD. The food at the airport is pretty fair overall and $$$$$

      1. re: Zippy

        I've had the pleasure of working at ORD for 12 years. The best beef place inside the Terminal Complex is at Gold Coast Dogs located both in Terminal 2 (the Roundhouse) and in Terminal 5.

        If you can get out of the airport the best bet close by is Mama K's located approximately 3 blocks east of Mannheim Road on Lawrence Ave. They have awesome meatball sandwiches too.

      2. re: jj

        Wolfgang Puck's IS very good for airport food. Their chinois salad is enormous, but doesn't weigh you down, has lots of flavor, and is crunchy. Plus, they have a few decent wine selections by the glass. And, their most popular options are available "to go", to supplement those prezel meals on the planes. Near the H gates, at American.

      3. I know you can get a beef somewhere at O'hare, I have heard of people getting them there. However, I have no idea of where or how good they are. Living in Chicago, I always wait until I am outside of the airport before I eat. Now, if you want to know where to get a decent beef near(as opposed to inside) the airport, I am sure someone can help. If you want a Chicago style hotdog, there are a couple of Gold Coast Dogs there, they might also sell beefs.

        Here is a link to the list of concessions.


        1 Reply
        1. re: roger spark

          Grab a cab and hit "Johnnie's" in Arlingtn Heights or "Frannie's" in Schiller Park. Keep the cab waiting for ride back to the airport.

        2. I tried one not long in the UAL B concourse and it was terrible--chewy, rubbery bun and dry flavorless beef.
          Skip the airport and go to a local place if possible.

          1. I don't know if it is "authentic" or not (this was my first Chicago Italian Beef) but there is a place at the end of Terminal F that sells them. Near gate F-9, IIRC. I had mine hot and dipped. It was good and I wish I bought two.

            There's a place in the Terminal C foodcourt that has them on the menu but nothing they were making looked very good.

            1 Reply
            1. re: BrianShaw

              Yes, in the Terminal C foodcourt the only decent thing (IMHO) is the salad place, since at least you can customize what you get.

            2. The closest thing at O'Hare is the Italian beef at the Billy Goat Tavern outpost in the food court across from the escalator that brings you into the C concourse at United Airlines (after you go through the neon tunnel). The place is more famous for their burgers (Belushi and Aykroyd from SNL cheeseborger, cheeseborger). Don't get the burger (real mediocre), their Italian Beef is passable.