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in Portage Park or Montrose on the Blue line

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Roma's Italian Beef and Sausage

View Map4237 N. Cicero Ave., Chicago
Tel: (773) 725-5715
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Editorial Review of Roma's Italian Beef and Sausage

They say don't fix what's not broken. Roma's keeps the phrase alive with its no nonsense, to the point, dog-and-beef fare a few blocks north of Six Corners (Portage Park). No wi-fi, no flat screens tuned to sports hanging in this room of neon and vinyl ads; in the 40 years of operation, the stand has changed little. Perhaps the only noticeable difference is the owner, Ron Sommario, grayed up a bit as jokingly mentioned in one of the many reviews hanging aside checkout.

The countertop seating stationed before spinning black stools fortifies the eat-then-jet notion. A landscape view of Cicero Avenue's four lanes mesmerizes a loner dogging a beef and sausage combo ($5.89). Perhaps that will change when the white birch tree out front blossoms and partially cloaks the scene. A lack of parking, just a small strip of street parking sans meters, means mostly residents on foot patrol drop in. However, a U-Haul next door brings in newcomers before their big move and five minutes east rests both the Montrose Metra and Blue Line stops.

Ask Sommario of his favorite dish and he'll assure he eats everything. Although, on our visit, we witnessed him lunching on a hefty Mediterranean salad peppered with chunks of mouthwatering feta cheese, which to our dismay, wasn’t on the menu. Rest assured, Roma's dogs are welcomed either way as they were inducted in the Vienna Beef Hall of Fame in 2006. And while known for hot dogs, Sommario attests "beefs are the big deal." The simple menu of fried and fast foods average at $4.89. A $10 minimum is required for credit card purchases.

Average cost: <$10

Centerstage Reviewer: David-Anthony Gonzalez

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10 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 10 a.m.-midnight Friday-Saturday

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