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Italian. Known as a staple for San Jose residences this classy and classic rat-pack-style diner, featuring tuxedo-clad waiters is one of a kind. From the homemade chicken soup to the Veal Scaloppini, Sinatra would be right at home. O.J.'s is perfect for lunch and late night eats.
Original Joe's has been a San Jose staple for over half a century. In restaurant years, that's almost an eternity. After a three-month closure for remodeling, OJ's reopened boasting completely new bathrooms, tables, booths and décor, along with three 47-inch flat-panel HDTVs in the upstairs bar. Original Joe's is a popular downtown SJ spot for appetizers and drinks before Sharks games, opera shows and concerts, all of which are easily walkable from the restaurant. Original Joe's kept the open kitchen, so patrons can still watch the chefs work. Drinks are delightfully old-fashioned, with a legendary Manhattan.
Regulars stop in to this San Jose institution to sip classic cocktails, including the bar's famous Manhattan, and catch up with the affable bartenders. Open for over 50 years, Original Joe's has the sort of clubby, old-school atmosphere that's hard to find in newer establishments, but with recent cosmetic updates, this San Jose bar and restaurant is anything but outdated. Popular for drinks and appetizers before Sharks games and concerts, it's easy to slip into a booth at OJ's and let time slip away.
Since its renovation, Original Joe's looks more sophisticated than ever, this is true. But did most people notice? OJ's is a downtown institution, and we'd go there for pasta at midnight even if they redesigned the place as a giant cardboard box. It's the collective buzz of late-night citygoers either getting their buzz on or trying to eat their way out of it, the waiters' slightly surly, super-professional attitude, the giant portions. OJ's is real city life, San Jose style. -- Metro Bars & Clubs, June 16, 2010
2009 BEST OF SILICON VALLEY Reader Survey Winner - First Place
Best Late-Night Eats
The Rocca family opened the original Original Joe's in San Francisco in 1937. In 1956, they brought the formula to its current location, opening what was then the first big-city restaurant in the South Bay. And now, as fate would have it, one of the coolest places in downtown San Jose is also the only place to get a real meal after midnight. Featuring a huge menu of huge dishes, it's one more reason to party late downtown
2007 BEST OF SILICON VALLEY Staff Pick and Reader Survey Winner - First Place
Original Joe's is the go-to late nightspot for drinks and Italian-American food. And now that the restaurant's summer-long remodel is complete, the place feels new again.
— Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper, September 26, 2007
Original Joe’s in San Jose could be said to have been conceived in 1954 when Lou Rocca's only child Lou “Babe” Rocca Jr. married Marie Ann Sole who in 1955 had son Matt followed soon after by Brad. Grandfather, Lou Sr. decided that it was a good idea to open another Original Joe’s restaurant for his son and his family. After searching throughout the Bay Area, Lou Sr. settled on San Jose, an up and coming city blessed with great weather and that presented a great opportunity. A perfect space became available in San Jose’s bustling downtown where Appleton's Clothing Store for women had just closed its doors.