Food Network star Anthony Bourdain visits Johnnie's Beef in Elmwood Park

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By Anna Lothson

Staff Reporter

Food Network and Travel Channel star Anthony Bourdain, host of Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, was on site filming Wednesday at Johnnie's Beef in Elmwood Park, 7500 West North Ave., just outside Oak Park.

Bourdain was visiting the Chicago area and his last stop before hitting the airport was Johnnie's. He tweeted a picture of an Italian Beef with hot and sweet peppers, with extra juice.

"The glory that is Chicago," the caption read.

Although he left soon after eating, film crews remained on site to get some extra footage inside the kitchen and outside of customers enjoying their lunches.

Email: Twitter: @AnnaLothson

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Reader Comments

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Joe Tucker  

Posted: May 9th, 2017 8:06 PM

johnnie's is absolutely the best

Ada Johnson Tikkanen  

Posted: February 20th, 2017 8:13 PM

I can't even think about how awesome Johnnie's is b/c I'm about to cry that I missed my food crush when he was just moments away. Must say, he has been true to Johnnie's over and over when it comes to beef.

Bill Dwyer  

Posted: February 20th, 2017 5:04 PM

How Elmwood Park of Mr. Fumo. Getting all macho-fied over a two year old post. Yo!

Thomas Fumo  

Posted: February 20th, 2017 4:57 PM

To the guy worried about a thumb.. You can stick that thumb up..... Petes really ? you have no cusine. Carms great ice great place and pepole your way off on your beef choice. To the guy talking about price and amount of food. Just go away dude. Victors was great. To the guy talking about how far you can run. I still run a mile under 7mins. And I can do while eating johnnies beef and run ur ass over at the same time. Lastly shut up oak parker

407 from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2015 12:12 AM

I miss chowing down at the Village Beef Shop on Lake near Ridgeland. Owner Ed LeJuene served his customers a very tasty sandwich. Buona gets my business these days and offers a terrific rewards program and lots of meal deals.

Bb from Shycogo  

Posted: January 9th, 2015 10:38 PM

Vittori's on Taylor Street was the best beef, best subs. RIP to the whole friggin neighborhood.

In Glen Ellyn formerly from OP  

Posted: September 4th, 2014 10:23 AM

Thankfully I wasn't raised on those beef sandwiches from fast food joints, although I can enjoy the occasional. I wonder just how many middle-aged regular beef sandwich eaters can still run a mile... or see their feet looking down while standing. Admittedly, Johnnies, with the aforementioned long lines cited as proof, is held in high esteem by my older sister who still lives in the area, isn't a regular beef sandwich eater, can still run miles, and see her own feet looking down while standing.

Marina Guzman from Lyons  

Posted: September 4th, 2014 8:48 AM

OMG! LLLLOSERS!!!!! This is about Johnnies! It's not about Carm's(which sucked by the way and closed down a million years ago, and I grew up on the island a billion years ago so I would know!), it's not about Michael's, and it's definitely not about Al's Beef (which I wouldn't feed to my neighbor's dog). Please Al's, HA. Al's doesn't even have real Giardinera! Johnnie's Beef speaks for itself the line is always out the door and out to the parking lot, steady! Now eat that beef! ;p


Posted: July 25th, 2012 8:49 AM

Who could forget Carms on Roosevelt RD and Home av. Everything got dipped, and the staff was doing you a favor waiting on you. My goto beef is Portillo's, close to O'hare.OH Chicago, I missya.

Lori M  

Posted: July 22nd, 2012 12:12 PM

The WORST time for me to go on vacation-I love Bourdain - and I noticed that none of the comments even mention him!

George L. P from Farmington  

Posted: July 21st, 2012 10:02 PM

Years ago "1970's the guys that worked at Johhnies were all great and had personality. They made a great beef back in 2004 have not been back since. Also it is an insult not to say Elmwood Park and instead of Oak Park. Who said the writer of this article had any class anyway.

David Hammond from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: July 20th, 2012 1:05 PM

Beefeater, have to admit, Johnnie's is my go-to place, though Al's in Little Italy is a very close second. As a general policy, I don't buy my Italian beef from places that don't specialize in Italian beef. If places have a huge menu, and Italian beef is just one of many items, I feel it doesn't get the attention it deserves. It's a simple dish but easy to mess up.


Posted: July 20th, 2012 12:27 PM

I wanted to ask David or Frank from the Journal to let us know your favorite Beef place, locally and in the Chicagoland area. I'm sure you've covered this before, but it would be good to see it again. I did try Michael's lately, and I wasn't thrilled with their offering. Food Stand Owners, you've got to serve Scala's or a similar high-quality, spicy and flavor-full product! Also, does Freddy's serve Beef? If they do, I'm sure it's the tops.


Posted: July 20th, 2012 10:14 AM

The best place was in Little Italy-Taylor St: the House of Vittori (Victor). But alas, it is gone and replaced by a fancier place, as is the case with most of that neighborhood. Al's is good, but you don't get enough for your money. I still love Buona. A bit pricey, however.


Posted: July 20th, 2012 6:37 AM

Michael's at North & Oak Park use to have the best, way better than Johnnie's, price much better. Now I go to a pizza place on Ridgeland & Madison, great beef sandwich, spicy & dipped!!

Wild Animal from Serengeti Plain  

Posted: July 19th, 2012 8:10 PM

P.E.T.A = People Espousing Thoughtless Advice.

another oak park resident  

Posted: July 19th, 2012 5:20 PM

The glory that is Chicago - overweight people eating dead mammal meat.

Tony S from Chicago  

Posted: July 19th, 2012 12:25 PM

Could there be any LESS attractive of a photo? Half in light, half in shadows, a thumb in the picture...I mean, come on.


Posted: July 19th, 2012 12:24 PM

Pete's is my go-to place for gyros in OP. None better... I think Johnnie's is the best Italian beef in Chicagoland (and I didn't grow up nearby). Definitely better than Mr Beef. If your issue is price, Johnnie's has the lowest price beef/sausage sandwiches compared to its competitors. As for service, it's what I want...Soup Nazi get-you-in-and-out-quickly.


Posted: July 19th, 2012 11:31 AM

Johnnie's Beef is WAY over rated! They give tiny sandwiches, a little bit of beef and the ppl workin there have NO personality whatsoever!! You can get a 'man sized' beef at Pete's over on Roosevelt Rd & Ridgeland that tastes way better and you get a ton more for your $$$$. When you go, tell them 'spaghetti' sent ya!!

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