Editor's update 9/4/2013: Sadly, Willy's is no longer. They have permanently closed. On top of that, the venue that took its place has also closed.
Your Hot Willy's Sausage and Italian Beef Superstore that is, on the corner of 17th Street and 5th Avenue in Ybor City.
The Belle of Ballast Point and I stopped in for lunch today and were duly impressed. The ambiance was reminiscent of one of our favorite places on earth, Key West; the beer was cold and our meal was superb. Yeah, I know, it probably seems a little hyperbolic to refer to a tube steak as superb, but that is no exaggeration.
On top of that, the Chicago-style Italian roast beef sandwich dipped in a flavorful au jus was practically orgasmic.
This sandwich was served wet, the traditional Chicago way, with the beef and bread dipped in "Italian Gravy". I asked for this Willy's treat to be topped with a slice of Mozzarella and a side of Italian giardiniera. This is also called "sotto aceti", which means "under vinegar", a common term for pickled foods.
Hot Willy's is an excellent reason to get off of 7th Avenue and away from the maddening crowds of tourists just wandering aimlessly back and forth. Visit Willy's for good dogs, a cold beer, and a relaxing atmosphere.
Lunch with a couple of brewskis and 20% gratuity came to a bit under thirty bucks.