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Stop Presses! Cheesesteaks Overrated!


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In his Metro blog Sept. 13, going-out columnist "Johnny Goodtimes" posts a roundup of what he considers the most overrated and the most underrated things about Philadelphia.

Sandwich mavens on this forum and jtnicolosi will probably jump out of their seats upon reading this pair:

OVERRATED: The cheesesteak. Rude service, a xenophobic owner, long lines, messy to eat and, according to many, the big name Philly steak shops are declining in quality. Philly cheesesteaks have become little more than a cliche and a tourist trap, especially the ones made by the Big Two.

UNDERRATED: Roast Pork. George’s in the Italian Market, John’s in South Philly and DiNic’s in the Reading Terminal, all make an incredible pork sandwich. And they all understand that Philly- style service can be fun if it’s loud and intense, but that it doesn’t have to be downright rude.

I think a few people around here have been saying this for, oh, like, forever?

Foobooz responded to the blog with an online poll. As of today, the votes are running 2-1 in agreement with the proposition that cheesesteaks are overrated.

The sandwich revolution is at hand!

Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

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As good a way as any to boost column readership.

It is not cheesesteaks or pork sandwiches. It is cheesesteaks and pork sandwiches. Both can be great sandwiches and often are.

This whole "icky cheesesteak served by mean person" thing is getting rather tiresome. If one can not handle the wiz and the attitude, go home and make a bologna and mayonaise sandwich on Wonder Bread.

Edited by Holly Moore (log)

Holly Moore

"I eat, therefore I am."



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I wonder if the decline in quality has anything to do with the homogenization of US beef?

It seems like it all tastes the same. When I was a kid I remember beef tasting different depending on what part of the country you were in. Could be the cigarettes and the Scotch but now it all tastes the same to me.

"And in the meantime, listen to your appetite and play with your food."

Alton Brown, Good Eats

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Knowing Goodtimes, I think his point about the rudeness is generally directed at the ugliness surrounding the Geno's "Speak English" fiasco.

Certainly the South Philly cheesesteak amusement parks have the rude thing as part of their gimmick (and everyone knows it's exactly that) but for me the tiresome thing is how contrived it is. Frankly, I don't see why people get bothered by it one way or the other. The last thing I'm looking for at 4am at the corner of 9th and Wharton is to be making friends. Just give me the damned steak and I'm happy.

Edited by Alcibiades (log)
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