The worst!. All I know is, my mother-in-law brought me back a Geno's cheesesteak before and I have never tasted anything more nasty in my life. The steak was soggy, cold, cheese was ...undescribeable, not to mention it was sitting in a pool of grease and there was probably more fat then there was steak. I really don't understand what people like about Geno's so much and if Pat's is anything like it, I'm not going near it. I'll stick with the Steve's and Jim's where the quality is MUCH better. There were many times where I got cold Steve's and Jim's but at least you can still tell it was fresh when it was cooked and it hasn't lost it's taste and texture. I might try Geno's 1 more time but if i get another cheesesteak and grease, grissle soup with VERY bland ingredients (yes the steak tasted like greasy, fatty cardboard) I will never go there again. It reminded me of school cafeteria food but worse.
Saturday Night Disappointment.
I am not from Philadelphia, however, I've heard so much about Pat's philly hoagies. Recently, I visited the city one Saturday night and finally had the opportunity to sample the "best" hoagie in town. I had no idea what a surprise I was in for! The cashier not only worked the register and handled the money, he also handled the rolls, without the use of gloves! The meat was thick and tasteless, tomatoes were not available, and the condiment stand needed much tlc.
As a visitor to the city and not being familiar with the menu, it would have helped to have viewed the menu on the other side of the building while waiting in the long line. Then I would not have been such an inconvenience when it was time to order and I wouldn't have felt that the cashier was getting impatient with me. I do realize that the goal is to keep the line moving but not at the price of customer service.
There are many better places.
Pat's and Geno's are two places you have to try to have truly visited Philadelphia... but they are not the best places to get a steak. If you are in the area late night, nothing beats a fresh cheesesteak for some drunken food, but their sandwiches are inconsistent on a sober level. If you want to experience the true philadelphia "friendliness" then this is the place for you. Misrable people expecting you to order a certain way or else they just get more misrable.
For the best in Philly, try Jim's on Southstreet with american cheese or Rick's in Reading Terminal for a new original. If you are in the burbs, see if you hook up some Capriotti's for a delicious treat.
When it comes to Philly's signature sandwich, most of the world gets it wrong. Here you'll find the real deal..
Traditionally, cheesesteaks are cheese and steak on a roll, and on this corner stand two establishments that serve the real deal. At Pat's King of Steaks, the birthplace of the cheesesteak, they come with Cheez Whiz and fried onions unless the customer specifies otherwise. At across-the-street rival Geno's, the type of cheese (Provolone, American or Whiz) is specified when ordering, at which time the customer can ask for his steak "wit" or "witout" onions.
Inconsistant. Pat's can't seem to get their steaks to be the same. I went late at night and the steak was in huge pieces and grisley, another time it was barely any steak on the roll. Another time it was downright tasty. I'll tell you what, skip Pats or Genos and get a cheesesteak from one of those carts at the corner - it never fails.
Join the crowd for a mediocre snack.
If you are checking out the italian market then it might be worth coming to thes two examples of word of mout and tradition. If, on the other hand you want a real example of the best cheesesteak Philly has to offer a trip to Oregon avenue just a few feet from the I-95 overpass is where you want to go.
The real best of Philly steaks are at Tony Lukes!
Two Can Sam. I dont care what people say: this is still the best place to get cheesestakes. Whether your a pats or genos fan (go pats) the athomsphere and quality is everything you expect
say "cheese". sit back and watch a few regulars order first, then get in the long line and order a philly favorite