Chicago, IL: Al's Italian Beef

By Candace Nelson - 10:00 AM

Al's BeefDeep dish pizza? Check. Chicago-style hot dogs? Check. Next: Italian Beef.

Al's BeefAl's #1 Italian Beef is recognizably THE place for Italian beef in Chicago, so we walked a few blocks away to get our mitts on a sandwich. I ordered an Italian Beef regular with cheese. You can get it wet (additional gravy), dipped (even more juicy), or dry (no gravy). I didn't realize they had sweet peppers, so I said no peppers. Bummer. We also got a thing of fries.

Al's BeefTypically, this isn't the kinda thing I go for. I'm not a carnivore, so I wasn't expecting this to be my favorite. But, the flavor of the gravy (don't think Italian gravy or mashed potato gravy, think juice) was complex - cinnamon? curry? - something, that really gave it a little extra something. I do wish I would've had the peppers to help break it up with some sweetness. The fries were really good. Very crisp and delicious. Tony had the Italian beef at Portillos and remains convinced it was superior. I was pleasantly surprised, though it's not something I think I'd seek out again.

Al's BeefGrade: B
Al's Italian Beef Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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