(Last UPDATED 5/23/2023) Description and review of Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s, located on Broadway in the Land Park neighborhood of Sacramento. NEW: See Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s Revisited.
Joe Marty’s Backstory
Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s, located on Broadway around the corner from the Tower Theater, has a long history as a sports bar. Joe Marty, a professional baseball player from Sacramento, opened his sports bar on J Street in 1938.
First of all, a bit of history. Joe Marty played for the Sacramento Salons, Sacramento’s professional baseball team, after he returned to his hometown. He had previously played for several professional baseball clubs – including the Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies. He was a contemporary of Lefty O’Doul and Joe DiMaggio.
In 1951 Joe Marty’s moved to its present location, the year before Joe Marty retired from the Sacramento Salons. The new site was just down the street from Edmonds Field, the home ballpark of the Sacramento Salons. Edmonds Field was located at the corner of Riverside and Broadway – the present-day site of Target.
Also See “Edmond’s Field Plaque” below.
For years I drove past the long-vacant, fire-damaged building that had been home to Joe Marty’s. While I had never patronized Joe Marty’s before the fire closed the place down in 2005 I knew people who had frequented the place.
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Joe Marty’s reopened in 2015 but despite my good intentions I never stopped by to check it out. After hearing that Sampino’s Towne Foods had bought Joe Marty’s I moved it up on my list of places to try.
Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s
A friend and I recently stopped by Sampino’s @ Joe Marty’s for a weekday lunch. We were seated immediately, and provided both menu’s and water. We were both really hungry after spending several delightful hours at the nearby Sacramento Zoo.
Our waitress came over soon after we were seated to check on us – but we were not ready to order as we were still looking over the menu. After we settled on what we wanted it was a bit of a wait before she came by again.
My friend had decided on the Steak & Blue Cheese Salad (Roasted Seasoned Tri-Tip, Bitter and Mixed Greens, Blue Cheese Crumbles, Dried Cranberries, Granny Smith Apple, Candied Pecans & Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing ($11.99). I ordered the Chicken Caesar Salad (Breaded Chicken Breast, Romaine Hearts, Parmesan Cheese, Croutons, Slice of Lemon & House Made Caesar Dressing ($11.99). Note: While the on-line menu shows the price of both salads to be $10.99 – the actual menu price is $1 more.
As we waited (and waited) to be served our salads, we caught up on what we each had been up to and kept an eye out to see what the tables surrounding ours had ordered. The various sandwiches (served with a small green salad and small fries) looked very tasty and everyone seemed to be enjoying their lunch.
Fellow patrons came and went, and we still had not been served our salads – so we made an inquiry. A few minutes later our salads arrived.
The Steak & Blue Cheese Salad received very high marks. The steak was done just right and the salad had an ample portion of each of the ingredients. My friend noted that when she took her last bite of salad there was more on her fork than just lettuce. She said that she would definitely order the Steak & Blue Cheese Salad again.
I enjoyed my Chicken Caesar Salad as well. The chicken was moist and the house-made dressing was tasty – but the Romaine lettuce was room temperature and had no “crunch”. I happen to like crisp Romaine lettuce – just my personal preference.
Other than the longish wait to take our order (after we were not ready the first time), and the long wait to receive our salads after ordering, I thought that the service was both pleasant and generally attentive. We never had to ask, for example, to have our water glasses refilled.
Now, we were in no hurry – but it may be a good idea to let the staff know if you are on a time schedule.
To sum up, Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s is now a bit of a hybrid. Everywhere you look there are TV’s and baseball memorabilia – so it is definitely a sports bar. However, it is also an Italian restaurant. I certainly intend to return to sample the dinner menu which includes Italian staples like meat lasagna, eggplant parmesan and ravioli.
Edmonds Field Plaque (added 10/8/2018)
I recently photographed the Edmonds Field plaque that can be found when you enter Target. The plaque is located on the wall to your right. Have you noticed it?
The plaque reads:
EDMONDS FIELD – 1910-1960
This was the site of Edmond Fields, Home of the Pacific Coast League’s Sacramento Solons baseball team for fifty years. The ballpark made baseball history on June 10th 1930, when it featured the first night baseball game in the Western United States five years before the major leagues did in 1935. The Solons won the pennant in 1942. Their fans were some of the best in all of baseball.
Dedicated July 16, 1998 – Sponsored by Play Ball! Sacramento
Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s Revisited
(6/11/2022) Several Renaissance Society members and I recently had dinner at Sampino’s Kitchen prior to walking around the corner to Tower Theatre for a viewing of the National Theater Live production of Henry V.
A variety of items were ordered, and enjoyed by my fellow diners. Not being particularly hungry, I focused on the appetizer menu. One member of the group ordered the meatball sandwich and that inspired me to order the Meatballs and Garlic Bread ($14.85). I was glad I did! The two good-sized meatballs were very tender and tasty, and the “gravy” was savory and a real taste treat.
I very seldom order spaghetti and meatballs at a restaurant – but I may make an exception next time I dine at Sampino’s – if I am really hungry.
As for the performance of Henry V, I just could not get into it. I called it quits and left during the intermission after saying my goodbyes to those staying for the remainder of the performance.
(5/26/2021) Broken link repaired.
Comments on Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s?
Have you been to Joe Marty’s since Sampino’s took over? What has been your experience?
Sampino’s Kitchen @ Joe Marty’s Snapshot: (Updated 5/23/2023)
- 1500 Broadway, Sacramento, CA 95818
- (916) 382-9022
- Days/Hours: Closed: Monday – Wednesday; Thursday (4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.; Friday & Saturday (4:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.) & Sunday (4:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.)
- Parking – Parking lot shared with Tower Theatre and Tower Café
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