What: “Big Bad John” sandwich

Pork loin sandwich stuffed with corned beef and Mollie’s sauce, wrapped in bacon & topped with cheese on a pretzel roll.

Price: $10.50 

Where: Mollie’s Public House

31 Forest Ave, Riverside

How: Owner Brian Carroll told me it all began with his love of pork. “I love pork loin. I think it’s a nice versatile cut of meat.” After some experimenting in the kitchen, the Big Bad John was born, a sandwich with a taste so amazing it earned Chef Carroll the moniker of “evil genius.” The sandwich was named in honor of Brian’s father John, whose nickname growing up was Big Bad John because of his passion for his ’57 Chevy and love of racecars.

Why: It may not be dainty or beautiful, but the Big Bad John is a meat lover’s fantasy meal. The unassuming outward appearance of this sandwich is the opposite of its taste. The juicy pork loin acts as a succulent canvas for the other bold components. Full of flavor, the homemade corned beef inside brings out the salty quality from the bacon. The cheese helps hold it all together, and the pretzel bun stands up to the hefty piece of meat. Not only is the outside of the pork loin crusted with seasonings to add even more flavor, it is entirely wrapped in bacon ensuring you get some bacon in every bite. Brian calls the sandwich “one of Mollie’s most obscure dishes,” but I challenge you to try it. I predict it won’t be obscure for long!


Get in on the bacon conversation and you could win $25*!

Plus, your answers could be published in an upcoming issue of Wednesday Journal!

Alicia wants to know: 

What’s your favorite local dish made with bacon or pork belly?

To Enter:

Give your answer in the comments section of this post, or any of the Bacon Quest posts on ONE of our sites:




One winner will be chosen at random for each of the three websites. Three winners selected total. Winners comments, and some others, will be published in an upcoming issue of our newspaper. Winners will be contacted at the email used to make the comment. Limit one entry per person. Please only answer on ONE of the three sites.

*Prize is a $25 gift certificate to Downtown Oak Park that can be used at over 75 businesses.


Does your restaurant have a bacon or pork belly dish you think could make the cut for Bacon Quest? Tell Alicia and she might consider stopping by on her next adventure!

Email her at alicia@oakpark.com

Alicia, who has lived in Oak Park for over half her life, graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a degree in Journalism and Media Management. She's been with Wednesday Journal Publications since...