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BEST CHAIN CHEESESTEAKS?

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I am partial to D'Angelo (though gotta get the one-pounder now that they give you skimpy meat), but always want to find an amazing cheesesteak. How are Jersey Mike's? Lenny's is abominable.

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  1. I really wish i could go to philly and try an authentic one. Ive been to phillys best, its pretty good, i just wish they would season their meat. Jack in the box should bring theirs back, it was convienient, greasy, and it actually tasted pretty good!

    1. I grew up with D'Angelo's -- the number 9 pokket to be specific -- and try to get one when I get back to RI and have enough slots in my meal itinerary.

      I've had a few Jersey Mike cheesesteaks down in Florida. I wouldn't call them amazing but they are pretty good and substantial.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Bob W

        Something about the seasoning at D'Angelo makes it really right, or the oil? They do something that makes it really good. They used to be so meaty, but, like all places, they have cut down on the meat (in all their products) Their subs are stupid with the meat-to-bread, it isn't good...some people ask them to have a smaller size roll when they order. But I get the one-pounder, which is a decent amount of meat...but ten dollars, so I use one of their two dollar-off coupons from their web site which makes it reasonable.

        1. re: observor

          I've always been partial to the pocket vs the subs, but the last time I had one (a few years ago), it was definitely smaller than I remembered. The number 9 pokket used to be bursting with luscious, greasy, meat, peppers, onions, mushrooms, and cheese. Not so on my last visit --still tasted good but much smaller.

      2. I worked in center city Philadelphia 20 years ago, I have never had a cheesesteak (or hoagies for that matter) that could touch the real deal, and I've tried them North,South,East&West. Hell, getting out of Philly may have saved my life, I lost 50lbs in 3 years after I left. Sure do miss the chow though.

        4 Replies
        1. re: mrbigshotno.1

          I LOVE Jersey Mikes. Wish they friggin' build one already in Maryland. I used to live in Virginia and go get one there as often as possible. They use Boars Head meat (Top Quality). Slice it Fresh (the steak) in front of you, and its delicious. Blows places like Jerry's Subs and Subway out of the water. It's by far my favorite chain Cheesesteak place. I am still mad/sad they are not in MD already yet seem to be everywhere else, even as far as California :(

          1. re: Woof Woof Woof

            I grew up in NJ, near the original Jersey Mike's. When I left NJ in 1995, the one thing I really missed were the subs you could get back home. Then I found Jersey Mike's, and was really impressed that they managed to bring that same style and quality out of state.

            That said, I have had the pleasure of eating "real" Philly cheesesteaks. Jersey Mike's are not the same thing. They are, however, quite tasty.

            1. re: dagwood

              I am with Dagwood. There is no substitute for the real thing. Since the original post is asking about good ones at a national chain, I will totally cosign on Jersey Mikes. Im not sure if the menu is nationwide or regional, but the one's here in Texas have a "big kahuna cheesesteak" that has grilled onions, green pepppers, mushrooms, jalapenos, and extra cheese. That is one tasty sandwich. Its my go to when I find myself thinking about heading out to a sandwich shop.

              1. re: down73

                Re: Jersey Mikes.

                we have the big kahuna down here in florida. I used to work at a jersey mikes when I was in college.

                Us kids would eat the crap out of the cheese steaks, they were so good, and were the perfect hangover food.

        2. CHARLEY'S GRILLED SUBS (382 locations): $4.79/$6.99

          Charley's serves up small cheesesteaks in a mini toasted and chewy sub roll that is proffered with tomato, lettuce, and mayo. The curly steak comes drenched with two large circular pieces of provolone that melt well on top of the meat. I found the meat to be rather juicy and somewhat flavorful, though somewhat dry in texture. The roll was good and crusty with a chew. My biggest problem, as it often is, is that it was so friggin' small! These places should have a mini sub size and then have real sub sizes for people who want a real sub. I don't think there was a quarter pound of meat on there for their "small" and the "cook" almost looked ridiculous spatula-ing a smidgen size of meat on the grill... Though it may speak to the quality of their meat that they cannot offer as much for the price. Anyway, decent but much too small, that isn't a sub it's a snack.

          8 Replies
          1. re: observor

            I don't know if most people would consider a sandwich with tomato, lettuce and mayo a cheesesteak. . It may taste fantastic, but I wouldn't call it a cheesesteak.

            1. re: Jase

              I don't care what anyone "consider"...there's cheese, there's steak, it's a cheesesteak, the assessment is still relevant, you don't have to get the vegetables.

              1. re: observor

                So's a roast beef sandwich with cheese. But it isn't what the OP is looking for.

                1. re: Jase

                  observor is the OP.

                  1. re: Fibber McGee

                    Yup, missed that. But still doesn't change the fact that what he's asking for isn't what most people would consider a cheesesteak. He would have better luck with suggestions if he actually asked for it by the right name.

              2. re: Jase

                agreed. not a cheesesteak.

                1. re: dagwood

                  When people in Philly order that they call it a cheesesteak hoagie.

                  1. re: Velvet Elvis

                    The cheesesteak hoagie ( or "steak & cheese") is pretty much the standard in and around Washington, DC. If you want it Philly style, you gotta tell them to hold the l/t/m. There's an exhaustive discussion of the distinctive qualities of cheesesteaks vs. cheesesteak hoagies on the DC Chow thread.

                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/4807...

                    As for cheesesteak chains, there aren't any I've tried that are worth eating in DC. Either the bread is flavorless or the meat is Steak-Um quality or woefully underseasoned. Oddly enough, many bulletproof Chinese carryouts can make a decent cheesesteak; the meat is almost always shaved ribeye, you can do American or provo, and they tend to go heavy on salt and pepper. And they're cheap. They also will load it up with bacon, ham, and eggs for a breakfast-style cheesesteak that works wonders if you're hungover.

            2. FIREHOUSE SUBS:

              For $5.69 you can get a sub that is hard to see. I have never experienced such a tiny sandwich, it was literally finger food. Additionally, the meat comes frozen and it tastes like it (quite spongy), and there tasted something like Italian dressing on there. Quite an insult to serve someone a sandwich that tiny, it was ludicrous.

              1. JERSEY MIKE'S: $6.75/$10.15

                I have to say this was a tasty sadnwich, because the meat is soaked in cheese. The meat didn't taste too dry, stringy, or artificial, though it didn't taste exceptionally fresh, even though it wasn't frozen when he put it on the grill. As always, there wasn't enough meat, just a thin layer in a big roll. Hasn't anyone ever known about proportion? If they did do proportion the bread would go about 4" long. You get twice as much meat in the large sub as the small, so that is the way to go. The bread was extremely soft and isn't toasted (it is heated) but it lacked a nice hearty chew. Overall, much too pricey, will have to find a coupon.

                4 Replies
                1. re: observor

                  I could not agree more with that assessment. Tasty. Far from hits the nail on the head though. You can always ask them to hollow out the bread. I find they are quite open to requests.

                  1. re: observor

                    the meat is good quality but it is frozen first. You can ask them to rip out some of the bread. Jersey Mikes is a franchise that is ruled by a corporate center. Corporate is who comes up with the proportions if they owners of the franchise do not follow the rules they get chided especially if their food cost is too high.

                    The proportion for the reg cheese steak is supposed to be 1 slab of meat and a hand ful of onions and a hand full of peppers if you don't add the veggies it comes out looks small. You can ask for mushrooms and other veggies free of charge but extra meat or cheese will cost you.

                    1. re: Sandwich_Sister

                      It doesn't *look* small without the veggies, it *is* small! :) Do you know how much the weight is of the meat is on the small and large? D'Angelo offers a one pounder that goes for ten dollars, but have an online coupon (for everyone, not just club members!) for 2 dollars off so that would be 8 dollars, which is good. I don't believe JM's would be as big, or tasty, I think.

                      1. re: observor

                        I'm sorry I don't remember the actually measurement of the meat for the cheese steaks when I worked there several years back. It's partitioned out as one slab for regs and 2 slabs for a large.

                        but I will tell you that for our fav customers we would allow them to add one extra slab of meat for a large sub not a regular. We would just charge it as extra bacon instead of double meat which is half the price. The one extra slab really does make a difference.

                        Ask them if you can do it, tell them that you came in and loved the sub but that you wished it had just alittle extra meat since you aren't keen on the veggies but that double would be too much. They are pretty accomadating, atleast they should be.

                        I think it would cost a dollar extra, and two dollars for double meat.

                  2. Submarine House in Dayton, Ohio, on Brown Street near UD. A dive that hasn't changed since the 60s, but a great cheesesteak!

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: lehickey

                      Haven't had a Sub House cheesesteak in years but, man, were they great!

                      1. re: FlyerFan

                        RE: Jersey Mikes/Have 2 Find A Coupon Kid. Sign-up for their E-Mail List. I receive coupons every once in awhile. But you have to have a JM in your area, obviously.

                        1. re: FlyerFan

                          Still good. No offense, FlyerFan, but I prefer the one on Germany by Wright State.

                      2. Any thoughts on Penn Station cheesesteaks? We have some here in Indianapolis and I enjoy the sandwiches and fries. Have never had a real Philadelphia cheessteak sandwich, so can't compare.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: rcn44

                          Penn Station's cheesesteaks are not like the authentic Philly ones, although they're large, tasty and made with good quality ingredients. I really go to Penn Station for the fries, which are what Five Guys' fries purport to be but fall short.