ROXBOROUGH >> Lennies Hoagies is a South Philly-style Italian hoagie shop in Roxborough with a seemingly endless menu of creative combinations.
The shop has a unique aesthetic that combines a baseball theme along with the owner’s love for The Big Easy. The deep colors and black painted ceiling in the interior of the shop were inspired by New Orleans, a favorite destination of owner Lenny Bracale, who has run the shop since 2001.
Design aesthetic aside, Lennies Hoagies is serious about its sandwiches.
“We’re a no nonsense hoagie shop,” Bracale said.
The menu boasts more than 70 sandwiches, including hoagies, wraps, cheesesteaks and burgers. Salads and sides are also available. In addition, breakfast is served all day.
Bracale started out working with his father at his Italian hoagie shop South Philly. He eventually took over at the store, which was located at Third and Ritner streets, and ran it for two years before deciding to open a store in Roxborough. Bracale is originally from Manayunk, and he had always hoped to be able to bring an Italian hoagie shop into the area.
Lennies Hoagies, located at 6141 Ridge Ave., has become a popular spot with a lot of longtime customers, as well as employees.
“We try to be as consistent as possible,” said Bracale.
If a customer has a sandwich in mind that isn’t included on the menu, the staff will make it anyway, and in some cases, they might take notes. Bracale is always coming up with new sandwiches and taking cues from his creative customers. If a customer comes in with a “wacky” request, the staff will name the combination after the customer and post it in the back to use for future reference, Bracale said.
Some customers have even had their own orders become part of the regular menu, like Albert’s Corn Beef, which is a combination of corn beef, American cheese and Cajun mayo.
Bracale likes to give every item on the menu a memorable name, like the Godfather (Parts I, II and III are on the menu), Yogi Berra and the Rev. Al Sharpton, to name a few.
“I’d be bored to death if I had just 10 sandwiches,” said Bracale.
Some of the most popular sandwiches are the Soprano, a variation on an Italian hoagie, and CJ’s Cajun Turkey. Some of Bracale’s personal favorites are the Home Plate Special and the Muffaletta, which he said is “unbelievable.” Others are dubbed “local favorites,” with names like the Manayunker and St. John the Baptist.
While there’s plenty of Italian-style hoagies on the menu, there are also several items that offer some Cajun flair, such as CJ’s Cajun roast beef sandwich with pepper jack cheese and Cajun mayo, and the Big Easy sandwich, which has ham, turkey, roast beef, bacon, havarti cheese and Cajun mayo.
All of the hoagies are available in two sizes: minor league and major league.
Lennies Hoagies also caters. The catering menu includes a Cajun specialty party tray, an Italian party tray and a Hot South Philly roasted pork tray, among others.
6141 Ridge Ave., Roxborough
Hours: Tuesday through Saturday:10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday: 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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