Arriving in Philly late at night, I was in need of cheesesteak. Of course, anyone with a right mind would want such a thing when arriving in Philly, but finding myself downtown and only looking for a place in walking distance, I opted for Steve’s Prince of Steaks. To outsiders, Steve’s doesn’t have the allure of Pat’s or Geno’s, but locals seem to like the place.
I also thought it somewhat clever of the place to go by “Prince of Steaks” as opposed to “King of Steaks,” which is what Pat’s calls itself. This plays in more to its underdog status, but I paid no mind to this as I ordered mine. Like any good unvegan, I chose “wiz without,” meaning cheez whiz without onions. There were jugs filled with additional toppings if I so chose, but aside from the hot sauce I opted for nothing.
I watched as they prepared fresh strips of ribeye on the griddle and loaded them into my sandwich with a bunch of whiz. Steve’s doesn’t chop up their steaks like some places, so they give the appearance of having less steak with the benefit of being heartier meat. Nonetheless, the sandwich looked nothing short of beautiful as I opened it up. I bit in and a feeling of happiness overcame me. While the bread-to-meat ratio may seem large, the non-crust part of the bread is soft and cushiony, giving way to a very comfortable mix of meat, wiz and bread. As for the crust part of the bread, it was just crunchy enough to add texture to the sandwich without falling apart.
Although it was unnecessary, I actually found myself dipping the cheesesteak in the hot sauce I had grabbed. This added an interesting element to the sandwich, which was not too spicy, but unique enough to take the sandwich to a different level.
Steve’s was a stellar beginning to my Philly food journey and I couldn’t help but look forward to my next 48 hours of cheese and meat obliteration.