Jamie’s Roast Beef
This is what happens when a classically trained chef takes on a North Shore classic.
“I went to school down Johnson and Wales in Providence, and I didn’t know that it was only a North Shore thing. So I walked into a sub shop my freshman year, I said, Can I get a roast beef three way? And the guy looked at me like I had 10 heads and that’s when I realized like, wow, it’s just around here that we have this.”
So he took this old school staple and ran with it creating Jamie’s Roast Beef in Peabody.
Matthew Marquis is the man behind the meat. Seasoning, roasting and slicing every sandwich perfectly.
“So Jamie’s roast beef is kind of a different take on a regional classic. And what we wanted to do is kind of put a different spin on it while still paying respect to the traditional three way.”
So he took all of that culinary skill and applied it to this deceptively simple sandwich.
“Something that I’ve always loved is using spices to enhance the flavor of whatever I’m cooking and our seasoning has 11 different spices in it. So that’s definitely going to put it kind of on a different level. It’s always going to be consistent, it’s always going to be a really nice medium rare. And so I think that sets us apart as far as consistency.”
The mainstay at any good roast beef shop is the so-called “three way sandwich”.
After the roast beef is done cooking, we’ll cut it open and get that really nice red center, put that on the slicer. And as we’re slicing the beef on the flattop, we’re going to be toasting the bun and then that crunch of the bread is going to hold up to the James River sauce and we have sauce to Mayo ratio, which is very important for the three way because when that perfectly mix together the flavors are out of this world. And then with the American cheese, you want to make sure that that’s always on the bottom because of that’s on the top of the roast beef sandwich, he had an eye on that first bite, and all the meats just gonna slip out on you.”
From there, the beef goes from basic to bananas. There’s the Boursin sandwich topped with that Garlic and Herb cheese, caramelized onions, and spinach. Or the Full Send smothered with Truffle Aioli, Taleggio cheese, pickled red onion and arugula. And if you love bernaise, check out the “The Weekend at Bernie’s” sandwich.
“I was trying to figure out how I was gonna get some sort of Berniaise on the menu. So what we decided to do was make a bearnaise aioli. But that tarragon vinegar in there. It gives it a really nice bite, almost a little sweetness as well and then a little horseradish on the bottom gives it a nice little kick. Because you can never go wrong and bearnaise and horseradish.”
And since Matt’s background is in Italian fine dining, he decided to homage with a flavor packed sandwich called the Mo’Talian, topped with burrata, basil pesto, marsala mushrooms and crispy prosciutto.
“If you read it on the menu, I’d say that’s a little aggressive. But when you get all those flavors together, it’s marriage in heaven. You feel like you’re just adding Italian restaurant mix with roast beef. It’s unreal.”
And while he’ll always give the classic James River BBQ sauce props, Matt came up with this creation, he playfully calls the “Sorry JR”.
“So instead of James River barbecue sauce is our house barbecue sauce and instead of mayonnaise, like the regular three way we make roasted garlic aioli. And then instead of American cheese, we have cheddar. And then just for good measure, we throw a nice beer battered on your ring on the top of that. So we named that Sorry JR. Like sorry, James River.”
Beyond the beef, Jamie’s offers pizzas from the classics- like pepperoni. To this one topped with fig and prosciutto. But if you’re looking for a real flavor bomb, look no further than the Johnny Tsunami Calzone.
“So the Johnny tsunami, a lot of people there’s the battle going on, does pineapple belong and pizza does a blog and calzones I’m here to tell you it does. Definitely. And with our barbecue sauce, and this really amazing ham that we use for that. If you try this and you tell me that pineapple doesn’t belong in calzone, and then I tell you you need to work on your palate.”
And your palate may want to work on some of Jamie’s other popular options. From The Cowboy Burger- topped with a beer battered onion ring, bbq sauce, and cheddar. To the Southern Fried Chicken Sandwich with pickles, lettuce and cajun aioli. To the explosive Steak Tip Bomb.
“They’re super tender. We got a little Italian seasoning in there so they’re definitely different than a lot of places around little sweetness, but a lot of depth. And then when you get that in the actual steak tip bomb with the salami, the mushrooms, the peppers, onions and cheese. It’s good stuff.”
So the next time you want to know “where’s the beef”, set your GPS to Peabody and get yourself to Jamie’s.
“I think you should definitely take the drive, no matter where you’re coming from. To try us out at least once, we’re bringing flavors that you go out and you spend $100 per head at a fine dining restaurant, bringing those flavors in and putting them on a roast beef sandwich for 10 bucks. And I just think that no matter how far away you are, you got to come try us out at least once both for the flavor. And just the overall sense of what we are and what we do here at Jamie’s.”