It's a lot tougher than it looks and they nailed the recipe for the sweet, hot and juicy beefs.
Since the mid-80s, Triano's Pizza has been a staple in Garfield Ridge, on the city's Southwest Side.
Today, Bill Triolo still works with his son, Anthony, making pizzas, and as of just three years ago, their very own Italian beef.
"We got a family, an old recipe from a family friend, and we kind of branched off of that and now we have our finished product," said Anthony Triolo.
That does mean a lot more work. First, making slits and stuffing it with fresh garlic. Adding some water, then roasting in the oven for a couple of hours. Midway through, taking it out, adding a combination of salt, pepper, oregano, granulated garlic and basil, then roasting it a few more hours. Once the beef is finished, you've got to make that flavorful jus, or gravy; meantime, the beef has to rest overnight; next day, you need to slice it extremely thin.
"You have to have a nice thin slice of the beef. If it's too thick, it's gonna be too tough. It's not gonna be the right tender beef sandwich that people are looking for," he said.
Then assembly: a brief dunk of the inside of the bread into the gravy. Then a whole pile of beef, right out of that ambrosial jus. Your choice of sweet peppers and/or hot giardiniera, and you're ready to eat it standing up against the counter. Triolo says he wanted to create something a little bit better than what the distributor was dropping off each day.
"There's other things on my menu that people can be highly satisfied with and maintain the same quality of say, a pizza that I put all my time and energy into just like this beef sandwich now," said Triolo.
As you probably know, there are certain rules when it comes to ordering Italian beef. You can get it dry, you can get it juicy, you can get it dunked, wet, sweet, hot; When you come to Triano's, if you say nothing, they're gonna go ahead and just dip that inside of the bread only into the top of the jus. If you want it dry, it won't touch the extra jus. And if you want it wet, or dunked, the whole thing is going into the jus. I get it sweet and hot of course. And two hands are probably important too.
EXTRA COURSE: TRIANO'S FAMOUS THIN-CRUST PIZZA
6758 W Archer Ave., Chicago