Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin?

Post
2011/08/21 18:09:14
Apparently it's possible, thanks to Ken & Betty's in Ft. Atkinson (or "Fort", as the locals call it), where I stopped for lunch on my way to meet The Contingent at Fred's in Burlington.

 
It's not a very big place but there are a few outside tables as well as al fresco dining options along the Rock River.  And once inside it's pretty obvious where the owners' loyalties lie!


 
The sandwiches are made with Amoroso bread and Herr's chips (very light and crisp) help ramp up the authenticity factor.

 
I was expecting a firmer feel and bite to the bread and was surprised how soft it was.  I like cheese but am glad the sandwich wasn't overflowing with it; there was enough to hold the meat together but no more.  Very good!

 
There's a map on the wall where Pennsylvanians who stop for a visit can mark their home turf with a pin.  Ken & Betty's would be a good place for visiting fans to stop this October when the Phillies are here to lose the NLCS to the Brewers!

 
Ken & Betty's also sells pork roll sandwiches for $4.50, with or without egg, and according to the young man behind the counter it's "Trenton" pork roll.  I'm definitely going to keep that in mind for a future visit!
 
Brad
joerogo
Filet Mignon
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/08/21 19:19:54
You stopped there on the way to an EatFest?  I'm very proud of you
 
I buy the Amoroso rolls at my local grocer.  They come in frozen, then thawed before they are put on the shelf.  Now I'm no expert, but nothing in those rolls says Philly to me.
 
Note:   They are good though, I usually toast them in the pan I am cooking with.  A nice crunch with a little grease.
 
 
post edited by joerogo - 2011/08/21 19:22:41
sk bob
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/08/21 20:31:10
great looking cheesesteak done just enough
Billfish
Cheeseburger
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/08/22 00:33:45
  One would think cheesesteaks would be de rigeur in Wisconsin,but that would be wrong.What Ken and Betty are doing here is something pretty cool.At years end,when Philly and Green Bay are battling for the NFC championship  (and it could well happen I believe) this will be a significant thing.At that time we will apparently see what the deal is between charcoaled brats  and those gorgeous cheesesteaks.I figure i win either way.
 
BuddyRoadhouse
Filet Mignon
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/08/22 02:29:26
joerogo
You stopped there on the way to an EatFest?  I'm very proud of you

It wasn't exactly an "EatFest"; he only had a couple of quarter pound burgers, and he barely touched the fried cheese curds and spiral cut potato chips.  Plus, it is almost a full 45 minutes from Ft. Atkinson to Burlington.  You didn't expect him to go all that way without sustenance, did you?
 
Buddy
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/08/22 08:38:17
As it was I was already quite faint by the time I got to Fort!
 
Plus I was saving room for a possible stop at a place called "Holi Cannoli" that I spotted on US-12 west of Elkhorn.  "Coal-fired pizza" was posted on the marquee and it caught my eye; I wound up not stopping but I'm keeping it in mind as a possible future investigation.
 
Billfish, if the Brewers and Phillies do meet in the playoffs (and as of today that looks like a real possibility) I would hope that one of the local TV stations or newspapers would do a story about Ken & Betty's.  Perhaps there should be a friendly wager between them and a local sausage shop.
 
Brad
MiamiDon
Filet Mignon
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/08/22 10:00:48
Nice report, Brad.  Were there any other customers when you were there?
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/08/22 11:23:54
Thanks, Don.  No, I was the only one but I arrived just a few minutes after the opening hour of 11 and was out of there by about 11:30.  That did surprise me a little bit but maybe they got busier later in the day.
 
Brad
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/12/22 09:54:34
I was in Ft. Atkinson over the weekend so I made it a point to stop in and try the pork roll...but it's no longer on the menu.  However, that made it possible to try the "South Philly" version of their cheesesteak, which replaces the white cheese with Whiz.
 

 
It was OK but I'm just not a fan of Cheez Whiz, so in the future I'll stick with white American.
 
Brad
joerogo
Filet Mignon
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/12/22 12:18:31
Hey Brad, were you on your way to lunch when you stopped?
 
I wouldn't expect a Certified Wisconsinite CheeseHead to appreciate Whiz.  In fact, I think I would enjoy Wisconsin spreadable cheddar instead of Whiz.
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/12/22 14:53:01
No, not this time!  But there are a couple of local spots (Scottie's Eat-Mor and Pizza Villa) that look they might be worth checking out.
 
Brad
JRPfeff
Filet Mignon
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/12/22 16:19:57
Brad,
 
They use American cheese on the other version? I always thought Provolone was used in Philly.
 
Jim
Re:Philly cheesesteaks without leaving Wisconsin? 2011/12/22 19:20:52
I thought provolone was the default white cheese, too, but K & B uses provolone on its pizza steak, Whiz on the "South Philly", and white American on all the other steaks.  Someone from Philadelphia will have to weigh in on this.
 
Brad