The Unvegan

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Heading for Philly at South Street (CLOSED)

Looks eerily like natto.

While LA may not have a signature food (the closest it gets is either Asian fusion or burgers), it has a hell of a lot of options for immigrants who miss the signature food of their homeland, be it Chicago Pizza or Detroit Coney Dogs. The Philly Cheese Steak is no exception, with plenty of places offering their “authentic” version. I don’t claim to be an expert on the cheese steak (only been to Philly once, during a massive blizzard), but the sandwich has always been a dear friend of mine. After all, what can go wrong when meat and cheese mix? Don’t answer that if you’re one of them Kosher people. South Street in Burbank has been bringing Philly toLA for a few years, so I thought I would see how they measure up.

For a cheese steak place, South Street has a pretty extensive menu that includes salads, pizzas and even non-cheese steak sandwiches, but I only had an eye for one thing – the original. Well, without the vegetables, of course. At $6.95, the regular 9 inch Philly Cheese Steak came with rib-eye steak and a special melty blend of provolone and white American (like me!) cheese. It also would have been topped with sauteed onions if I wasn’t an unvegan and was piled into an authentic Amoroso’s Italian roll, which is apparently straight out of Philly. The roll actually doesn’t arrive fully baked and South Street finishes the job themselves to keep from getting lazy and perhaps even to keep it fresh. But I didn’t stop with the steak, I also ordered a side of cheese fries, which at South Street means topped with cheese wiz.

South Street prepared our food pretty quickly and soon I found my face consuming a delicious mix of cheese and meat. The rib-eye steak was damn delicious and I loved the blend of cheeses. I usually prefer wiz on my cheese steak, but figured I would go with the house here and it was a great choice. The roll was a little softer than I anticipated, but still did a great job of holding together my sandwich. When it all came together, it was purely awesome, but the trouble was that it didn’t come together enough. Let me clarify…the sandwich wasn’t filled enough. I get that I didn’t have onions, but I still kind of expected the roll to be filled end to end with meat and cheese, but by the time I got to the end, I was just sucking down bread. But, things like this are bound to happen when you have an insatiable appetite like mine.

My fries got wizzed all over.

And thankfully I had the fries to make up for the shortened sandwich. This may have been the most massive fries I have ever been given for the price of $2.50. Maybe they were trying to make up for the sandwich, but either way it was awesome. I downed more wiz than any man has any right to, and that was without getting wiz on my sandwich.

South Street certainly delivered a delicious Philly meal and one worth returning to. It wasn’t the best cheese steak I’d ever had (honors still go to South Philly Experience), but the price is unbeatable and the the meal will not disappoint. If they could only get some Yuengling, that would vault the place over the top.