A specialty sandwich made with a "secret" sauce is a hallmark at a popular Ronkonkoma bar and restaurant.
The Old City Public House, located at 200 Portion Road draws a friendly crowd for its quality American pub food of burgers, wings, fajitas and most notably the French Dip Sandwich.
"It's a family-oriented tavern. We're the home of the French dip," affable owner Jimmy McGuckin began an interview, echoing the words on a sign at the entrance to the restaurant.
McGuckin says they draw a friendly crowd of families, locals and plenty of regulars, many for the bar which features 16 on draft and eight bottled beer, along with specialty cocktails like Cosmopolitans and one with Irish Lemonade, and many come just for the food.
"Half of our bar service is for food. We also have live music and stay open late, till midnight. During happy hour which is from 12 to 7, you can have drink and food specials at the bar or at your table," McGuckin said.
Turning the conversation back to the French Dip he described his eatery's sandwich why it's so "delicious."
For starters, they use a house-made au jus from a "secret recipe" and fresh rolls baked the same day, he said.
"We use high-quality roast beef and we slice it very thin and marinate it in au jus then soak it in the au jus and top it any way you like it. The most popular ways are American cheese and homemade fried onions and mozzarella with mushrooms. We sell more French-dips over burgers."
McGuckin opened his restaurant two years ago after working both in owning and running restaurants since 1979.
His au jus was inspired by a restaurant his family went to when he was growing up in Brooklyn.
"We used to go to Brennan & Carr for their slow roasted roast beef," McGuckin recounted, telling little else about his "secret" recipe.
"We also sell a lot of fajitas, both steak, and chicken. I think the reason is we sliced the steak from the shell steak from the Porterhouse. So (customers) are getting the same steak as they would if they ordered a Porterhouse, or shell steak," he continued.
Another popular dish at Old City Public House is their Mexican Pizza, a 12-inch flour tortilla fried until golden brown topped with seasoned beef, mixed cheese, diced tomatoes, black olives and jalapeños served with sour cream and salsa.
Ones to try include Old City Fries. They come topped with melted American cheese served with brown gravy on the side for dipping.
Varied burgers, sandwiches, salads, steaks, seafood, pasta, and chicken are on a sizable menu.
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