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March 6, 2009
From journal I Found My Way to San Jose
San Jose, California
April 14, 2002
The portions here are gargantuan, so huge that the majority of customers walk out with doggy-bags. The menu can be somewhat pricey if you're on a budget, but nevertheless, it's a great place to people watch. This is true Americana, folks - a great menu of cholesterol-filled, heart-stopper specials in true gastronomical fashion.
The ambience is loud and the decor is straight out of 1962, but nevertheless, it's a great place to dine with the family or to gorge away a hangover on a Sunday morning. Go for the Veal Scallopine ($17.95) or a ridiculously huge steak sandwich ($7.50).
In the back there's an incredible cocktail lounge where amateur drinkers are laughed out of the establishment. Some friends and I were in here one night about ten years ago, and a waiter brought back a margherita from one of the tables because the lady who ordered it complained that it was too strong. The bartender, who was comepletely smashed himself, waved his hands dismissively and replied, "Too strong? Well, then tell her to go to a fucking ice cream parlor next time."
OJ's is the only sit-down restaurant in Downtown SJ that serves past midnight. You absolutely, positively cannot visit San Jose without going to Original Joe's.
From journal People-watching in Downtown San Jose
Bayside, New York
November 17, 2001
If real men don’t eat quiche, then O.J. caters to them. You want meat? You’ll get cholesterol defying chunks, broiled served on the amazing sourdough French bread with a side of steak fries which are cut by hand. They serve very generous sandwiches, egg dishes galore, soups, salads, fish and chicken. It’s the only restaurant in town that stays open past midnight.
I decided that if I were going to hell, it might as well be with eggs, and ordered an omelette (4 eggs if you please) for $8.95. Chuck has a combination omelette, since it doesn’t feel like an omelette to him unless it has stuff in it. They allow you 2 extra ingredients per omelette and you can choose from cheese, spinach, sausage, bacon, ham, onion and veggies. I did find an interesting item on the menu referred to as "diet" and it was a 12oz. hamburger steak with cottage cheese and fresh fruit.
The beverage menu is quite simple; tea (pekoe only), coffee, milk and/or soft drinks. No fancy, schmancy espresso based drinks or idiosyncratic concoctions. There is, however, an extensive wine list for diners or lunchers and beer. Nevertheless, this restaurant is always packed, with people waiting in line. I am brought back to an earlier era when I see people eating at a counter in a restaurant. Original Joe’s has their counter service, and you can watch the cooks at work on the grill. When was the last time you had ham hocks and lima beans?
If in San Jose, you must do Original Joe’s at least once.
From journal San Jose - Another Look
March 14, 2001
From journal A Taste of San Jose
Long Beach, California
February 15, 2001
From journal Silicon Valley