Recently we found ourselves in Center City Philadelphia for a wonderful wedding at the College of Physicians, which is a coolly unique museum and garden if you have time to spare. But, you cannot go to Philadelphia without visiting one of the classic cheese steak hot spots. Upon an earlier visit to the city of Philadelphia, my husband not only visited Geno's for a cheese steak, but then also went across the street to Pat's for a second fix. He declared that he had to give both a fair shot at his taste buds. I watched excitedly from the sidelines, satisfactorily full after the first cheese steak went down the hatch. Needless to say, I don't know if he was able to eat anything else for the rest of the day because he was so full, but it was well worth it! Those two are classic joints.
These days we find ourselves going back to Jim's Cheesesteaks on South Street. Jim's does it just right. The roll is soft and fresh and just the right size. The cook behind the counter knows just how much steak to accompany the cheese, onions, peppers, etc. I usually go with the steak and provolone, while most still swear by the whiz. Sometimes I go with onions, maybe I'll add peppers, but you can't go wrong with just the steak and cheese. Classic.
After you have patiently waited in line, placed your order, received your hoagie, and paid your bill, you head through the kitchen to the upstairs seating area. This threw me off on our first visit, but yes, it's okay to go through the kitchen to get to a table. And, it's quite fun to go through there and see the guys freshly carving the meat. Just think of how much meat those guys go through every single day!