I finally went to Gumbah's this past Saturday and had the Chicago hot dog. This was almost faithful to the prototypical Chicago dog except the buns were not steamed and instead of celery salt they sprinkled something else which I could not identify. All in all, a pretty decent dog. Better than Windy City here in San Mateo. They were out of fries so I had their Jumbo Beer Battered onion rings straight out of a bag. Next time I'm in the area, I'll try their beef. Interior has lot's of faded Chicago items and wood carvings for sale. It felt spooky to be in there so I had it to go and ate in the car.
Brother and I ate lunch there today. Gumbah's is definitely still up and running, and well worth a visit.
I had the Italian Beef sandwich, Brother had the Beefy Cheese Combo, an Italian beef with the addition of an Italian sausage and some shredded jack cheese. Both come with a healthy splash of the herb-rich beef jus, and your choice of sweet or hot peppers. Both sandwiches were excellent, packed with tender, flavorful, thinly sliced beef. Generous and very filling. I'd have liked a dollop of red sauce on mine; think I'll ask for that next time. I opted for the hot peppers, which I think are house made, and consist of chopped carrots and onions as well as the peppers, in a spicy, vinegary brine. We saw a batch of these being made up in a huge cast iron skillet in the back. I'm pretty sure the Italian sausage is house made also, and was quite good, meaty and sweet with good fennel flavor.
We tried the chili also, and liked it. It's (surprise!) Midwest style chili, a little on the soupy side, with tomatoes, red beans, and some green peppers. I think I even saw a green bean in there. Spicy without being too hot, it was nicely balanced; a good example of the style. Brother gave it an A.
Our order of onion rings arrived piping hot and crunchy crisp, fresh from the fryer. The order consisted of five rings, but they were probably 4 inches across and 2 inches wide; huge onion rings from a seriously huge onion, and five was more than enough.
As mentioned in other posts, there's atmosphere aplenty, the joint has just the right vibe for this kind of place. Friendly and cozy. We were served very quickly, within just a very few minutes of placing our order.
Brother and I consider Gumbah's a find, and we're already planning our next raid.
138 Tennessee St., Vallejo
11:00am - 2:30pm mon-sat