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May 22, 2004 02:29 PM

french dip: Phillipe's Original VS. Houston's

  • j

I'm a little bit hesitant to try Houston's french dip sanwich because 1) I absolutely LOVE Phillipe's french dip, AND its only about $8 2) Houston's french dip is $16, which I think is a whole lot to ask for... especially if its not as good as Phillipe's.
So, please help me out and compare the two for me. Is Houston's version worth the $16? Is it that much better than Phillipe's? Perhaps I am comparing apples and oranges... how are they different if thats the case?

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  1. Huston's is good but not worth the upcharge compared to Phillipe's. If you want to try a good french dip (again not as good as Phillipe's) which is tasty and inexpensive try "The Dip" at 14333 Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks. Just brought in from there last night. Tried the roast beast (beef), pastrami and lamb (single dip - any more is too soggy for me). Really good. Actually if they would get a crispier roll like Phillipe's uses I would give them a higher rating. They still wouldn't be as good as Phillipe's because where else can you get that fabulous mustard that flames the mouth, makes the eyes water and destroys your nostrils. "The Dip" charges $4.89 a sandwich and I think you actually get a little more meat than Phillipe's. Give it a try!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Hugh Lipton

      Totally agree with you Hugh. The bang for the buck is very good. Get mustard and horseradish and a single dip lamb sandwich! Yum. Wish they did tongue(lengua)!

    2. Try the Houston's French dip, you won't be disappointed. Houston's meat is thinly sliced prime rib and very soft and tender. They serve au jus and horseradish cream on the side. I love Phillipe's as well, but Houston's is definitely worth the extra $$

      1. I do not like the Houston's version, one reason is that they put way too myuch mayo on it. I tried it again without Mayo and it's OK, not amazing like Phillpe's. The california burger is what to get at Houstons, in my opinion.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Ted

          They offer the mayo and horseradish (great horseradish BTW) on the side if you want. Houston's French dip also comes with good skinny shoestring fries on the side

          If you are near a Bandera (Houston's sister restaurant) they offer a nearly identical FD, but with slightly better bread

        2. Philippe's is about $4.50 and comes in beef, pork, lamb, turkey and ham.
          Houston's is a prime rib dip, a better cut of meat.
          Is it worth it?
          How much is "grilled cheese night" at La Brea Chat 'n Chew?

          1. In my humble opinion, (and I,ve sampled both versions) Houstons blows the doors off Phillipe's. It is indeed the "gold standard" for this type of sandwich.

            6 Replies
            1. re: GFEHER

              I don't eat beef.
              How's their pork or lamb dip?

              1. re: Curt

                I sampled the lamb dip on two occasions. The first time, I left with a very favorable impression, it was moist and very tender with a nicely balanced "spring lamb flavor". I was in heaven! second time around I did'nt fare nearly as well. The lamb was very tough and chewy with a strong, unpleasent lamb odor. UGH!!
                I promised myself, never again. But who knows, maybe someday if I'm in the vicinity I'll give 'em another try.


                1. re: GFEHER

                  I've had the same experience with the lamb dip at Phillipe's recently. Previously dependable, the last one was a chewy bust. Houston's Dip is really a prime rib sammy au jus. Exquisite, but strictly a 'special occasion' treat at that price.

                  1. re: GFEHER

                    Lamb usually reminds me of cooked shoe.
                    Good lamb is so rare that I have all but given up on it.

                    I believe you are refering to Phillipe's.
                    That's what I was expecting.

                    IMO, when "comparing" Phillipe's, places like Cole's or the Jolly Jug come to mind.
                    Comparing it to Houston's prime rib sandwich, is like comparing The Hat to Langers; they're different animals.

                    Phillipe's also makes a grilled cheese.
                    The logical comparison wouldn't be La Brea Chat 'n Chew.

                    And that wine list; don't get me started!

                    The posts are now beginning to make the point.

                  2. re: Curt

                    Actually, I prefer the pork over the beef at Phillipe's. You'll notice that the pork sandwich is listed above the beef sandwich on their menu boards, FWIW.

                  3. re: GFEHER

                    You mean Awesome, right?