Portillo’s Hot Dogs – Oak Lawn, IL

22 08 2008
  • 4020 W. 95th St.
  • Oak Lawn, IL 60435
  • (708 ) 422-1384
  • Website
  • Menu
Portillos Hot Dogs on 95th St. in Oak Lawn near Chicago

Portillo's Hot Dogs on 95th St. in Oak Lawn near Chicago

I said this a month ago when I reviewed the Portillo’s in Crestwood, IL (review HERE).  I LOVE PORTILLO’S!  The thing I miss the most about Illinois and Chicago cuisine is the Italian Beef sandwich so anytime I get a chance to get one, I make sure I do. 

J and I were at her parents before continuing our trip south to my parents for the annual Homecoming celebration.  We got in late and had plans to go to a 24 hour restaurant for breakfast, but we were too tired and just went to bed.  When we woke up, both of us were starving.  After playing Mario Kart Wii with her mom for a while, we got up and went looking for lunch.  J asked what I wanted and I said I didn’t care.  She knows me all too well and suggested Portillo’s.  I thought we were going to the one on Cicero we always go to, but she said there was one closer to her parents place near Christ Hospital. 

Portillos Hot Dogs in Oak Lawn, IL

Portillo's Hot Dogs in Oak Lawn, IL

Unlike most chains (Portillo’s is a Chicago chain with a few locations in Indiana and California), Portillo’s is not a cookie cutter operation.  All the buildings are different and they each have their own theme.  The Crestwood store has a 30’s & 40’s theme.  The store we went to today in Oak Lawn is a 30’s Prohibition theme.  The outside looks like an old distressed building and there’s a tower you can see a mile away with the Portillo’s logo. 

We opted for the drive-thru on this visit so we didn’t have to get dressed any more than we already were.  I knew what I wanted.  I never pass up an Italian Beef sandwich when I’m in Chicago.  I passed on the fries and I already had a drink at home.  That’s me trying to be a little more concisious about what I eat.  I still get the beef, but pass on the fries which are just out of the bag crinkle cuts anyway, so I’m not missing much.  The beef is piled on the hogaie roll and still dripping with au jus.  I passed on peppers and cheese and just went with the meat, which made it a little dry, but still incredibly delicious.

J picked Portillo’s because they have a salad that she really likes.  She couldn’t remember which one it was so she asked the lady through the drive thru speaker.  It took a couple times repeating to get the information she wanted, but in the end, she got it.  The salad she got was the Gourmet Garden salad with fresh romaine and iceburg lettuce, a variety of vegetables and cubed cheddar cheese.  She got an oil and vinegar dressing to go with it.  When we got home and started unpacking, her mouth started watering.  I don’t know how that happens over a salad, but with her it does. 

A Chicago-style Italian Beef from Portillos Hot Dogs in Oak Lawn, IL

A Chicago-style Italian Beef from Portillo's Hot Dogs in Oak Lawn, IL

Our total was just over $9 for the salad and sandwich.  I was still a little hungry afterwards, but I’m saving up for a BBQ dinner later.  The drive thru took quite a while because of the people in front of us, but no worse than when I’ve gone inside at other locations.  I would never tell a native Chicagoan that Portillo’s has the best beef in town because they’d shoot me, but I would tell a visitor to find a Portillo’s if they want to experience Chicago style food.  You can find better shops scattered through town, but you have to know where you’re looking.  There are Portillo’s everywhere and they do a really good job.  I’ve always gone to them for convience and I really do love their food.  Portillo’s is a Chicago institution that you have to try at least once.




8 responses

15 10 2009
john t stuart

we ate at this restaurant with friends from fort smith that are from chicago i’ve heard about a chicago hotdog and an itialin beef sub wow after one bite i was hooked weve plan on ordering it for thanksgiving dinner…cant wait to have another nothing like it.my aunt lives in oaklawn too… love the place.

6 05 2010
Ray Ray’s Italian Beef & Sausage « SW Michigan Dining

[…] over twelve bucks.  That’s ridciulously cheap.  In comparison, we don’t get out of Portillo’s for much less than $25 and my beef was much better than […]

18 07 2010

I’m sure portillo’s is very good, but when I compare the pics of ray rays food to portillos, ray rays wins hands down… I can’t tell you what I thought when I saw the pic of the pulled pork sandwhich, but it made me want to eat the whole thing and go back for more…I’m just thankful that I found a really good place to eat that is within my price range.

18 07 2010
SW Michigan Dining

I don’t disagree with that. Portillo’s isn’t even the best in Chicago,but it is very good and convenient which is why I stop often when I’m home.

18 07 2010

Also I wanted to comment that the owner of ray rays went to a local bakery{Mackenzies} and worked with them until they came up with the right dough for there breads to make there sandwhiches, which shows me that this man really cares about putting out a really good product. He also goes to a very good local meat processor to get his meat specially processsed and grade A to ensure that it is the best meat he can get… I’m assuming that his meat has less crap in it compared to other processed meat… He really thinks about what he makes and how it’s made. It’s not just about cutting corners and using whats available, but it seems to be about what is really good and tastes soo good… So if your health conscience then you’ll really appreciate the food here… Just try it and I’ll bet you’ll start craving it as I do… Enjoy!!!


18 07 2010

the best food you’ll ever eat!!!

5 12 2011
Mr. Beef on Orleans « SW Michigan Dining

[…] close enough, my whole life and I always thought the two big players were Al’s and Portillo’s.  I never knew of Mr. Beef because they aren’t in the south suburbs and my parents hated […]

30 06 2012
Al’s Beef – Taylor Street, Chicago « SW Michigan Dining

[…] over who has the best beef, but to me, there’s no comparison.  I like Mr. Beef.  I like Portillos.  I LOVE […]

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