Jul 11 2011 08:00AM CT
[17:59] Let’s talk about another edition of classic Chicago where we feature the people, places and things that make our city special. This morning we’re featuring Chicago’s OLDEST STEAKHOUSE, GENE and GEORGETTI. It’s celebrating its 75th year in business. The synonymous with Chicago. Rattles by on Franklin just above another iconic landmark housing in a building celebrating 70 YEARS of operation in a wooden structure put up in 1872, just a year after the Chicago. Fire. There were ordinances passed right after the Chicago fire of 1871 that says no wooden buildings.
[18:52] Laughter] look at this beautiful lady. Hello, darling. Tony’s mission is to keep the tradition of the RESTAURANT alive. He and his wife Marion took over soon after his father-in-law, co-founder, GENE, passed away in 1989. Some of the old timers will say you’ve done a great job of keeping the tradition going. I tell them, I just haven’t screwed it up yet. To walk in is to walk into another time and place. It’s an old school STEAKHOUSE built on quality service, consistency, of course top notch food. The key to a great STEAK is a tremendous boiler, right? Lot of heat. When they are delivered to us these are old fashioned gas burners.
[19:42] They are delivered about 850 degrees. We modify them to about 1100 to 1200. We don’t put anything on the STEAK no. Salt, no pepper, no anything. They go on the broiler.
[20:38] Come fly with me we’ll float down to peru Frank Sinatra was a regular and became a good friend of GENE, sitting next to him here in this photo. Lucille ball was a huge fan too, and the big names keep coming. The president enjoyed a meal here not long ago. Russell crowe closed down the bar one night with Tony and his daughter. Maybe the best compliment of all, I bumped into competitors, John and Steve, owner operators of another Chicago institution, gibson’s STEAKHOUSE. We love the competition. This is the one we really love.
[21:27] It’s the Chicago classic. We wish them a lot of luck and many more years of success. This is what a STEAKHOUSE is all about. What’s the word, pal? It’s a classic. They will mark their 70TH ANNIVERSARY with three nights of throw-back dinners this Thursday, Friday and Saturday, part of the proceeds go to a few of their fairtsz charities. They are going to offer a four-course feast. They borrowed this from a menu they found from the late ’40s.
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