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Authentic Chicago Italian Beef Sandwhiches in Tampa?

Glutton4Grub Apr 3, 2012 11:57 AM

I've been here for 9 years and haven't heard it spoken of!

There has to be a place!

Also, any Chicago/Chicago-style food places would be great!

I've missed:
Arancinis (rice balls), cannoli cake(really moist like a tres leche), great Italian bread(usually more of a circle-darker brown exterior-super light n airy inside), gardunes(from celery family-slightly tart, usially breaded), etc, etc

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  1. s
    seminole phil RE: Glutton4Grub Apr 7, 2012 02:52 PM

    http://www.italianbeef.com/state/flor... check this out im phrom phlorida, phil

    1 Reply
    1. re: seminole phil
      Glutton4Grub RE: seminole phil Apr 8, 2012 08:44 PM

      Thank you, Phil !

    2. Mild Bill RE: Glutton4Grub Apr 7, 2012 03:30 PM

      Not Chicago, but Italian... You've been to Mazzaro's in St. Pete?

      1 Reply
      1. re: Mild Bill
        Glutton4Grub RE: Mild Bill Apr 8, 2012 08:43 PM

        Bill, I love Mazzaro's & would move to St Pete just to be closer!!!

      2. j
        jeff6806 RE: Glutton4Grub Apr 10, 2012 10:04 AM

        There's nothing comparable to Al's or Johnnie's Beef here but there are a few random places around that make a decent one. Most good ones I've had are outside of Tampa Bay unfortunately. I'm still waiting for a Portillo's to open here.

        3 Replies
        1. re: jeff6806
          Glutton4Grub RE: jeff6806 Apr 10, 2012 11:25 AM

          Theres a place in Schaumburg I miss...Zippy's!
          I heard of a place in largo thats really good.
          I hear ya on portillos!! I even worked there at one point!

          1. re: Glutton4Grub
            triff RE: Glutton4Grub Apr 10, 2012 12:17 PM

            The place in Largo you are probably referring to is Chicago Grill & Dog House on Ulmerton, just east of Belcher. "Mayor" Bruce that owns it is quite a character (originally from Chicago), and puts out some pretty good dogs and beef sandwiches that give us our Chicago fix. My only complaint is he uses a crinkle cut fry instead of a perfectly crispy on the outside and soft in the inside one we know and love from Chicago. Yes, I miss Al's, Johnnie's, Portillo's and countless hot dog joints we had all over the place back home, but Chicago Grill is really a taste of it.

            1. re: triff
              Glutton4Grub RE: triff Apr 10, 2012 06:52 PM

              That's the one! I have yet to get over there, but plan on it soon!!

        2. l
          Lorenz RE: Glutton4Grub Apr 11, 2012 05:53 AM

          Yes, Chicago Grill has good beef, as good as most of the regular places in Chicago, just a little under the best of the places people really love back in Chicago. Definetly the best Itailan Beef I have found in Florida. For those Johnnies fans, I just read on a different post that they have closed down, no reasons were given why.
          I don't think their dogs are as good as their beef though.
          Best Chicago dogs I have had in Florida are at Hot Dog Heaven ( no Ital Beef) in Orlando on east Colonial Drive. There are 3 Ital Beef places in Orlando and none are good, what so ever.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Lorenz
            jeff6806 RE: Lorenz Apr 11, 2012 06:04 AM

            Looking around online it looks like both locations of Johnnie's are still open? Although it also looks like there's a million of them around the country so maybe we're talking about different ones.

          2. g
            Gastro66 RE: Glutton4Grub Aug 14, 2012 05:40 PM

            Tony's Chicago Beef in Sarasota, Fl. www.tonyschicagobeef.com or Facebook www.facebook.com/tonyschicagobeef

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              lokobous RE: Glutton4Grub Sep 22, 2012 05:54 PM

              BONO'S they were still open when I lived in TPA, Mels and all the other's R terrible compared with Bono's, period, hands down. The beef bread isn't authentic (and the owner will tell you so) but that aside, great beefs and hotdogs, nuff said

              2 Replies
              1. re: lokobous
                RibDog RE: lokobous Sep 22, 2012 07:15 PM

                Are you speaking of Bono's in Largo?

                1. re: RibDog
                  Little T. RE: RibDog Sep 24, 2012 06:42 PM

                  Must be.

                  I must have passed that Bono's 1000 times but have yet to stop. Enough is enough :)

              2. byrd RE: Glutton4Grub Sep 23, 2012 04:09 AM

                decent, not great:


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