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 Two of Philly's Best

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signman

  • Total Posts: 1743
  • Joined: 10/23/2000
  • Location: Baltimore, MD
Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 12:17 AM (permalink)
After numerous late afternoon drive by's of 2 of Philly's most popular sandwich shops, only to be met with a Closed sign on the door, I finally had a chance today to visit John's Roast Pork and Sarcone's Deli at lunchtime.

Arrived at John's around 11:30 AM and joined the line that was already backed up to the door. The line is for the grill. No waiting for the already prepared roast pork. And as much as I wanted to give the pork a try, I opted to wait for the cheesesteak that had been touted as one of the best in town. The Phillies had a 1 PM game today, so that contributed to the crowd which eventually spilled out the door and down to the corner. And based on my experience, meant a wait of at least a half hour or more. There's a sign stating that the grill closes at 2:30, a half hour before the whole place shuts down.

And here's why ordering a grilled item, (at least today) takes so long. Unlike Pat's or Geno's or Jim's who have a large grill loaded with meat and onions, the grill at John's is small, and the cook takes orders for about 8 sandwiches at a time and then begins cooking the steak or chicken. That's all he has room for on the grill, and when the guy 2 spots in front of you places an order for half a dozen sandwiches, that means you keep waiting for the next go round. Although I prefer grilled slices of steak, John's does chop up their meat as it cooks, but into much bigger pieces than you will find at D'Alessandro's, Gaetano's, Jim's or at any place here in Baltimore. And that made a very satisfying mild provolone steak, albeit with very few onions, for lunch today. Put it into a Sarcone's roll and yes indeed this is one of the best cheesesteaks I have had, maybe the 2nd best ever after White House.

This was a big sandwich for 7 bucks and there was Black Cherry Wishniak in the soda case too. Just about as good as it gets.

Then it was off to Sarcone's for an Italian hoagie or two for the cold pack, to be consumed for dinner and tomorrow's lunch. The bread was incredibly fresh even hours later, and the meats first rate. Better than Primo, but still in 2nd place to White House, but that is saying something. Although this sandwich travels better than a WH regular. They close around 3:30 or so, because that's when the bread runs out. And forget about just getting some rolls at Sarcone's Bakery down the street. Sold out of all bread at 12:45.
 
#1
    douginvirginia

    • Total Posts: 462
    • Joined: 1/27/2005
    • Location: Luray, VA
    RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 10:38 AM (permalink)
    Thanks for the notice about Sarcone's closing time. I'm stopping in Philly next week on the way to Connecticut. My plan is Tony Luke's - a roast pork for lunch, then pick up a hoagie at Sarcone's for later. I now know to get there earlier than I had planned.

    I'm going to D'Alessandros the next morning. Of course there are others I'd like to try, but they get the nod since I've not been there in about 15 years.

    Ct. stops are Pepe's and Ted's, the back down to visit with friends in Rockland county NY.

     
    #2
      wanderingjew

      • Total Posts: 7384
      • Joined: 1/18/2001
      • Location: East Greenwich/ Warwick, RI
      • Roadfood Insider
      RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 10:44 AM (permalink)
      quote:
      Originally posted by douginvirginia


      Ct. stops are Pepe's and Ted's, the back down to visit with friends in Rockland county NY.


      Pepe's is great
      On our recent CT tour, most of us agreed that Ted's was "ok" but nothing we would go out of our way for.
      If you really want to try a local Connecticut Special
      Try the Chicken Pie



      at Dottie's Diner in Woodbury!
       
      #3
        ellen4641

        • Total Posts: 3531
        • Joined: 5/1/2004
        • Location: Egg Harbor Township, NJ
        RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 10:53 AM (permalink)
        Nice detailed report, Signman..
        I've been to Johns Roast Pork once before, and loved their cheesesteak.... (I remember a sesame seeded sub roll)
        John's also closes in the mid aftertoon, for all others planning to go for a "sub run" in Philly..

        I like the fact the sandwiches are made fresh, unlike my last experience with Jim's a year or so ago. (I'm done with that place, tasted like air)
        The cheesesteak was only warm, not hot and juicy, cause they've got so much meat laying on top of the grill, and on top of itself..
         
        #4
          CheeseWit

          • Total Posts: 1393
          • Joined: 4/10/2003
          • Location: West Chester, PA
          • Roadfood Insider
          RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 11:06 AM (permalink)
          quote:
          Originally posted by douginvirginia

          Thanks for the notice about Sarcone's closing time. I'm stopping in Philly next week on the way to Connecticut. My plan is Tony Luke's - a roast pork for lunch, then pick up a hoagie at Sarcone's for later. I now know to get there earlier than I had planned.

          I'm going to Dallesandro's the next morning. Of course there are others I'd like to try, but they get the nod since I've not been there in about 15 years.

          Ct. stops are Pepe's and Ted's, the back down to visit with friends in Rockland county NY.




          I want to give you (and anyone else interested in this topic) a head's up about Dalesandro's. The original owners sold to a greek family who let everyone go. Many of my contacts tell me the quality has slipped. The last time I was there was in July '04 during a cheesesteak tour I hosted.

          Those same contacts (I have many as a lot of people know that cheesesteaks are my thing and I host tours all the time) are telling me that a former cook from Dales, Barry, has opened his own shop. It's called Barry's Steaks (duh!) and it's very close to Dales' location: 471 Leverington Ave. (btwn Mitchell and Ridge) Phila., PA 19128 Ph.: 215-487-3278
          I plan on checking Barry's out soon.
           
          #5
            douginvirginia

            • Total Posts: 462
            • Joined: 1/27/2005
            • Location: Luray, VA
            RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 9:22 PM (permalink)
            quote:
            Originally posted by CheeseWit

            quote:
            Originally posted by douginvirginia

            Thanks for the notice about Sarcone's closing time. I'm stopping in Philly next week on the way to Connecticut. My plan is Tony Luke's - a roast pork for lunch, then pick up a hoagie at Sarcone's for later. I now know to get there earlier than I had planned.

            I'm going to Dallesandro's the next morning. Of course there are others I'd like to try, but they get the nod since I've not been there in about 15 years.

            Ct. stops are Pepe's and Ted's, the back down to visit with friends in Rockland county NY.




            I want to give you (and anyone else interested in this topic) a head's up about Dalesandro's. The original owners sold to a greek family who let everyone go. Many of my contacts tell me the quality has slipped. The last time I was there was in July '04 during a cheesesteak tour I hosted.

            Those same contacts (I have many as a lot of people know that cheesesteaks are my thing and I host tours all the time) are telling me that a former cook from Dales, Barry, has opened his own shop. It's called Barry's Steaks (duh!) and it's very close to Dales' location: 471 Leverington Ave. (btwn Mitchell and Ridge) Phila., PA 19128 Ph.: 215-487-3278
            I plan on checking Barry's out soon.


            CW,

            Thanks soooo much for your information. I hadn't heard of he ownership change, but that being the case I will rethink my plans. I'm staying up near Bensalem, do you have any recs up that way? I will also try to research Barry's. I'd like to try Leo's, but don't want to backtrack that far back south.

            Thanks again, Doug Davis
             
            #6
              douginvirginia

              • Total Posts: 462
              • Joined: 1/27/2005
              • Location: Luray, VA
              RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 9:38 PM (permalink)
              quote:
              Originally posted by douginvirginia

              quote:
              Originally posted by CheeseWit

              quote:
              Originally posted by douginvirginia

              Thanks for the notice about Sarcone's closing time. I'm stopping in Philly next week on the way to Connecticut. My plan is Tony Luke's - a roast pork for lunch, then pick up a hoagie at Sarcone's for later. I now know to get there earlier than I had planned.

              I'm going to Dallesandro's the next morning. Of course there are others I'd like to try, but they get the nod since I've not been there in about 15 years.

              Ct. stops are Pepe's and Ted's, the back down to visit with friends in Rockland county NY.




              I want to give you (and anyone else interested in this topic) a head's up about Dalesandro's. The original owners sold to a greek family who let everyone go. Many of my contacts tell me the quality has slipped. The last time I was there was in July '04 during a cheesesteak tour I hosted.

              Those same contacts (I have many as a lot of people know that cheesesteaks are my thing and I host tours all the time) are telling me that a former cook from Dales, Barry, has opened his own shop. It's called Barry's Steaks (duh!) and it's very close to Dales' location: 471 Leverington Ave. (btwn Mitchell and Ridge) Phila., PA 19128 Ph.: 215-487-3278
              I plan on checking Barry's out soon.


              CW,

              Thanks soooo much for your information. I hadn't heard of he ownership change, but that being the case I will rethink my plans. I'm staying up near Bensalem, do you have any recs up that way? I will also try to research Barry's. I'd like to try Leo's, but don't want to backtrack that far back south.

              Thanks again, Doug Davis


              Some quick research reveals these comments on Barry'd from chowhound:

              http://www.chowhound.com/topics/505239

              Seems Barry was at Dales for 30 years, unless CW comes up with something closer to where I'm staying I will try Barry's and report back.
               
              #7
                CheeseWit

                • Total Posts: 1393
                • Joined: 4/10/2003
                • Location: West Chester, PA
                • Roadfood Insider
                RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 10:54 PM (permalink)
                douginvirginia: You're welcome for the info. If you're in Bensalem, you're only a few minutes from Steve's Bustleton Ave. & St. Vincent Street location in NE Philly. From Bensalem, take Street Rd. to Bustleton and go south on Bustleton. Cross Cottman Ave.(73) and at the first light you'll see Steve's on the corner. Steve's is in my top 3 cheesesteaks in the Philly area (the others being John's Roast Pork and Chink's).


                 
                #8
                  signman

                  • Total Posts: 1743
                  • Joined: 10/23/2000
                  • Location: Baltimore, MD
                  RE: Two of Philly's Best Fri, 06/6/08 11:21 PM (permalink)
                  And you can get a chocolate soda at Steve's. When was the last time you had one of those?
                   
                  #9
                    CheeseWit

                    • Total Posts: 1393
                    • Joined: 4/10/2003
                    • Location: West Chester, PA
                    • Roadfood Insider
                    RE: Two of Philly's Best Sat, 06/7/08 10:44 AM (permalink)
                    Howard: You are sooo right about that! With temperatures in the upper 90's, I might have to get one this weekend.
                     
                    #10
                      douginvirginia

                      • Total Posts: 462
                      • Joined: 1/27/2005
                      • Location: Luray, VA
                      RE: Two of Philly's Best Sun, 06/8/08 7:20 AM (permalink)
                      Guys,

                      Thanks again for the tips. Steve's with a chocolate soda sounds perfect!

                      I've always been a chopped fan, but am really looking forward to Steve's sliced as well as my two other stops - Luke's and Sarcone's.
                       
                      #11
                        AddaLittleKick

                        • Total Posts: 5
                        • Joined: 7/14/2008
                        • Location: New York City, NY
                        RE: Two of Philly's Best Mon, 07/14/08 2:27 PM (permalink)
                        I heard John's was excellent. I have still yet to try it. My personal favorite is Steve's Prince of Steaks. I've been getting the same meal for the last 14 years---American Without, Fries Whiz on the Side and a Chocolate soda. Unbeatable imo.
                         
                        #12
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