Good Italian Sandwich
When I lived in Philly after college I fell in love with true Italian hoagies -- provolone, prosciutto, capicola, ham, salami, roates red peppers, the works...
But after living in Chicago for 7 years now I have found only a couple places here that really deliver - Capt. Nemo's on Ashland and Eatzi's in the Century Mall at Clark and Diversey.
Any suggestions, especially downtown?
I've been wondering that too. I grew up in New England, where every corner store sold "Italian sandwiches" that were made with prosciutto, spicy ham, salami, provolone, fresh chopped onion, tomato, and green pepper, and topped with olive oil and pepper. Back in the 60s, they all had fresh-made small ones on a hot dog bun, then large ones on a real hoagie roll.
Eatzi's has a decent version, but back when they first opened in Dallas, their sandwiches were pure amazing. I used to go there on business a lot, and I'd stop on the way back to the airport to pick up a couple, one for the flight, one for the next day. They've cut back on the quality, IMO. Glad you asked the question; I'll have to check out Bari's.
Bari is excellent. I would also recommend Gino's Italian Imports on Harlem. Nowhere near downtown, but an excellent stop for picking up all things Italian. If you give the counter guy a roll, he'll make you an excellent sandwich. I'm fond of the hot sopressa w/ the genoa salmi and smozed mozeralla - toped w/ a little of their olive salad oil, a couple of slices of roasted red pepper, or a marinated artichoke heart or two, and you're off. I buy my romano and parmesan here too.
Next door is Pasta Fresh, Antonio makes amazing pastas. Several high-end Italian restaurants use his product. Shhh.
3422 N. Harlem