It is more than a little strange that I had to move from the east coast to the west coast to experience a cheese steak. I grew up in NY and they were a poorly prepared novelty when I stumbled on them here. Didn’t do much to sell the promote and explain what the fuss was.
While working in southern California there was a place called Philly’s Best near my office. Their sandwiches were killer. When I returned to NY I lamented the fact that there was nowhere to get a decent cheese steak around here.
Well, the search is over.
As I posted in another thread, I stopped by The Hawt Dog Truck and tried their dogs. They were excellent and exotic and led me to wonder about everything else on the menu.
I went back recently with the express purpose of trying the knish and the cheese steak.
I screwed up my first time there and ordered hot dogs that were way off the beaten path. I should have ordered just a plain dog so I had some normal sort of baseline to judge them. I didn’t repeat that error with the cheese steak, although they have about a dozen varieties on the menu.
The sandwich was worth the trip and the wait. I ordered the straight-up, plain old cheese steak and it didn’t disappoint. The bun was roughly 8” long and was fresh. Similar to an oversized hot dog bun. It held a monster sandwich, so much so that you soon find yourself grateful for the inclusion of the plastic knife and fork.
The meat seemed to be cooked with enough sautéed onions to flavor the steak, but not enough to overpower it or be considered an addition. The meat itself was tender and tasty. The cheese was (I believe) provolone.
The sandwich was a meal in itself and cost $5.50. I’ve never been to the icons in Philly, but it’s hard to believe that these cheese steaks wouldn’t fit right in.
Alright, here’s the bad news. They are now closed for the winter. But there is some good news. They run a restaurant (I believe it’s near the Queens/Nassau border) and I think that their full menu is available there as well.
Here is their site for those that are interested. You can sign up for their mailing list on the site as well as view menus and such. http://www.hotdawgtruck.com/