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Houston Po Boys

Back in the late 70's to mid 80's there was a chain of Po Boy restaurants in Houston (Bissonnet, Westheimer, & Hillcroft) by the name of Yamin's. If anyone can remember them and might know of a place to get a hot sandwhich like that in Houston post it up please.

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  1. I remember Yamin's for pizza, spaghetti, etc. Never had the po-boys so I'm not sure what you're talking about. There was a split in the family and some of the Yamin's were renamed Stefano's, then they all disappeared.

    By hot po-boy do you mean just hot ingredients, such as meatballs, Italian sausage, or the whole sandwich is heated/grilled/toasted?

    For the former, Ponzo's, downtown on MacGowen near Spec's has some hot Italian subs; there's a new place on Airline near Canino's Produce Market called Chicago Italian Beef that would have them too. I haven't been to the latter.

    For toasted po-boys/subs with deli meats and cheeses, my fav is Mandola's Deli on Leeland @ Cullen. Looks like a doctor's office from the outside rather than a restaurant, closes by mid-afternoon. This is a branch of the same family that's got a lot of restos around town, including the original Carraba's. I like the Super Deluxe, heated, but they have about a dozen po-boys on the menu and you can have any one of them heated.

    Mr. Submarine on Mangum also does this kind of heated sub with lots of different ingredients, meat ball, deli meats and cheeses, etc. I haven't been in several years but I think you have to specify if you want it heated (they'll ask you at Mandola's).

    For New Orleans style po-boys on a baguette (fried shrimp, oysters, catfish, roast beef, etc.) try Ragin' Cajun or Jazzie Cafe on 19th in the Heights. They both do versions of the famous roast beef po-boy from Mother's in New Orleans.

    New York Pizzeria (several locations) has Italian panini which would be very similar to hot Italian style subs and lots of other places will serve paninis these days.

    Spec's Deli downtown has a big sandwich menu which would include meatball subs and they have a ready made po-boy with deli meats and cheeses for $2.50 that I sometimes pick up, bring home and toast in the skillet with just a smear of olive oil to get the bread toasty and the meats and cheeses hot -- pretty good that way. I do that sometimes to the standard Antone's po-boy, too.

    I'm sure there are many more.

    1. I went to college with one of the Yamin descendants! I haven't thought about them in years. I also never had a po-boy there, but it was around the corner from my high school (back in the 70's) and we would sneak off campus and have a cheese pizza for lunch. So very good!

      You know, at Antone's they have hot po-boys and if you order a cold one and want it toasted, just ask. I had an Original po-boy yesterday. You can also ask for different things ( like olives, lettuce, etc.) on them at no extra charge.

      1. LOL, well at least 3 of us remember them and thanks for the replies. My inquiry was originally intended to mean the po-boys were served hot. Buns toasted, and cheese melted over the salami, ham, and other meats. I also remember the Stefanos name..... Man I'm getting old!

        1. I remember the Yamin's PoBoys! Sooo good. I was excited to learn that the family who owned Yamin's Pizza & Poboys in Houston is now in San Antonio doing catering at "Four Sisters Catering" . They are going to get my catering order just so I can try one of their "Hot Po-boys (Ham, Salami, Provolone, Chow-chow)! Will let you know if it tastes as great as I remember.....

          1. Bambinos on Westheimer, near Montrose

            1. Does anybody remember how Yamins made their Po Boy? What was in it? It was the best during that time and we traveled just to get their Po Boys. I only remember them having one kind unless we was stuck on the one we liked. Thanks

              11 Replies
              1. re: Air1stCav

                Wow, this old thread has resurfaced again huh? If memory serves, the Yamins Po Boy was Genoa Salami, Ham, or maybe Mortadella, and Provolone cheese. I want to say there was some kind of pickle / mayo spread as well but that was a long time ago. Yamin was also a popular spot for their Muffuletta'a
                See Ya!

                1. re: TXStingray

                  I think the pickle/mayo was thousand island? After all this time me and my wife often talk about this place on Dacoma right down from the Firestone Station. We loved their PoBoy. Thanks for the reply. Gerald

                  1. re: Air1stCav

                    Gerald, after posting yesterday I did a Google search and came up with the following website in San Antonio which was mentioned earlier. Apparently the sauce was chow-chow based on their corporate catering menu?
                    Perhaps we should get together and make a run over there?

                    1. re: TXStingray

                      Actually Yamins used mayo only. The chow chow you are thinking of is used on Antones' po-boys.

                2. re: Air1stCav

                  Wow, imagine finding this thread. I was a cook at the Yamin's "Pepperoni Villa" on the corner of Bissonet and Buffalo Speedway back in the early 70s. I can tell you exactly what we put on our Po Boys. Imported ham, salami, provolone cheese, and a quick swipe of mayo and a mild chow chow relish. Toasted them in the pizza ovens until the cheese was melted and they were crispy on the edges. We would make hundreds of them every morning before the doors opened.

                  I remember how the menu described our ham and salami as being "imported." Heh. The ham came from Poland in big 5lb cans, which we sliced up on a meat slicer. The sticks of salami we sliced also, as well as the pepperoni for the pizzas, but I honestly don't recall anymore where they came from. Knowing Philip Yamin though -- the owner -- it would have been the cheapest he could find. The imported ham from Poland was cheaper than domestic brands.

                  Yamin's was one of the few places in Houston I knew of back then where you could get a muffuletta sandwich -- a sort of New Orleans speciialty -- and I'll admit, it was good. We made our own olive relish from scratch. That and the Italian sausage poboy, which was ground Italian sausage, provolone, and pizza sauce on a poboy roll, were my favorites. The poboys were good too, but only if I made them the way they they should have been made -- extra ham and an extra slice each of salami and provolone :)

                  Back in those days many pizza joints used a dough roller to turn out their dough. Not very many places did the hand tossed thing or what we now think of as "traditional crust" around here in those days. Yamin's didn't do any of them. We bought our crusts already made and partially cooked. So's all we had to do was lay on the sauce and mozzarella (which we bought pre-granulated, btw -- it came in big plastic bags) and ingredients, and slide 'em in the oven. Saved a lot of time I suppose. I'll admit, though, the sauce was good, and was Yamin's own recipe.

                  Man, I could tell you stories about that place . . .

                  Philip Yamin had a younger brother whose name was Steve, as I recall, and who had his own carry-out Yamin's on Hillcroft back in those days. Same menu items, but they were two different businesses. At that time, those two were the only Yamin's around.

                  I can't figure out the editor here. If I go back and try to edit a post, it doesn't replace the original, it just appends it. What's up with that? So, as a result, it appears that there will be a close duplicate of what you just read immediately below this. Weird.

                  1. re: cooltouch

                    Really interesting inside info! I don't think I started going to Yamins until the late 80s. There was one on Westheimer just inside the loop I think; only went to the Buffalo Speedway one once.

                    1. re: cooltouch

                      Muffaletta! Yummy. I was 16 and pouring beer at lunch at Biss and Buffalow Speedway.

                      Phillip got mad when he found out I was quiting cause I had to go back to high school. and that I was not 18. I had some great times there and meet some great friends their too. Can't remember any of your names. But I was the tall skinny blond that too orders (Peggy) Anyone remember me? Yummy pizza and sandwiches. I would get into the kitchen and make my own after the rush. the year was summer of 1969.

                      1. re: cooltouch

                        The Yamin's lived down the street from us in Sharpstown. They had a big place, Yamin's Family Restaurant I think, in the shopping center at Gessner and the Southwest Freeway in the 70's. It later became a Hickory Pit BBQ in the 80's. Not sure if the man was Philip or someone else in the family.

                        Hickory Pit
                        6601 S Rice Ave, Bellaire, TX 77401

                        1. re: DaTulip

                          Keepiing this topical, I saw a post of yours about BB's in Montrose. A waitress I know is from Louisiana, and she says the roast beef poor boy is as good as New Orleans. I saw how you liked the shrimp. I have not been yet, but need to go. Ah, Yamin's, never went as I was a Zinnannte's on Hillcroft guy. I see you were in Sharpstown back in the 70's, I went to Sharpstown High in the mid 70's, we might know each other. Our go to skip school lunch destinations were Massey's and Henry's BBQ both on Bissonnett. Masaey's was run by a near Fred Sanford look alike. I remember when Henry's went from 1.00 to 1.25 for sliced beef, a minor blow we got over. Sorry about that other thing.

                          1. re: James Cristinian

                            I'll have to try the roast beef at BB's next time. I went to Sharpstown in the mid 80's but had cousins there at the same time as you. Small world isn't it?! No worries on the other thing. My comment wasn't directed at you, but thank you nonetheless.

                            1. re: James Cristinian

                              Massey's BBQ rocked! Right across the street from Bayland park. Yes, he was a dead ringer for the older Sanford! Sharpstown '81

                      2. That hot mayo on those poboys could take the skin right off your hands if you weren't careful...

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: yammywhammy

                          I love those prices - .99 c for a po boy, $2 for a muffletta! Anybody got a time machine?

                          I think I remember that name Scarlet Heifer but can't recall I ever had one.

                          1. re: brucesw

                            I was so excited to find this thread on CHOWHOUND! Four Sisters Catering in San Antonio are the 4 Yamin daughter's of Phil and Michele Yamin owner of Yamin's Pizza & Po Boys. We have the HOT Po Boys-New Orleans Muffuletta's and all the great sandwiches in Hot Mini's including the famous Scarlet Heiffer with ground beef-Pizza sauce & cheese.
                            We have been in business for over 15 years. If you are ever in the Alamo City give us a call we will be happy to cater to you and your friends! Tiffini (sister #2)

                        2. I remember Yamin's. My mom and I would go there and pick up the same thing every time. The hot muffuletta !!! It was the best one I've ever had, and I've had them everywhere including Central Grocery in New Orleans. Salivating just thinking about them. Wish these guys were still around.

                          1. What I wouldn't give for a Scarlet Heifer with Cheese and a large Dr, Pepper. I would travel out of state if I could find one !

                            1. As a seventh generation Houstonian I grew up eating Yamin's Po Boy sandwiches and considered them addictive. They had a small shop near Delmar Stadium in Northwest Houston's Oak Forest area. I was ruminating over them up here in New Jersey -- the land of awful food -- and did some surfing and landed here. Is there any way to obtain the "recipe" for those wonderful sandwiches? They were superb. Antone's po boys are good but different. Houston has the best and most varied food in America.