As a Philly Cheesesteak aficionato since the Fifties, I know that the Philly Cheese steak or the plain steak without the cheese is a perfect food but its normal to dress it the way you like it. Cheese is the first option but there are different cheeses. Normal is a kind of CheezeWhiz but Swiss, Cheddar and Provolone are also great… If that’s your taste. Don’t ruin a steak sandwich with a cheese you don’t like. Skipping the cheese is also OK. Next are onions, either fried with the meat or added separately. Most onions used by the steak shops are yellow onions which are rather bland but you can always add extra. They should be chopped into half inch pieces or sliced but not diced. Onions can be cooked separate or with the meat. 

Garlic is usually just garlic powder but some shops have the real thing.

Cherry Peppers are almost a religion for cheese steaks. Some like them hot and others like very hot. Today “Hoagie Spread” which is chopped up cherry peppers is available but purists look down on the stuff. A bite into a real cherry pepper is a tasty experience. 

Next comes ketchup or tomato sauce.  Some shops make a special effort to have a great tasting tomato sauce or spaghetti sauce. It’s an Italian thing.

Italian rolls are as important as the meat. Philly Steaks got started because of the availability of wonderful Italian rolls. Philly had and still has a large Italian population and tomato sauce is an Italian tradition in Philly.

Rolls… Italian Back in the Fifties there were no other places than Philly that had proper Italian rolls. Getting a cheese steak in Manhattan was impossible.

Here’s the list as of 2018… The top three steak shops are in yellow. Green is honorable mention. All the rest are PHILLY GREAT!

NOTE! ED RENDELL NAMED THE LEANOVER POSITION NEEDED TO EAT A CHEESE STEAK WITHOUT DRIPPING ALL OVER YOURSELF. “THE PHILLY LEAN.”
1 ABNER’S OF UNIVERSITY CITY 3813 CHESTNUT
1a ANTONIO’S VEGGIE 1014 FEDERAL, PHILA
2 BARKLEY PRIME 237 S. 18TH
3 BARRY’S STEAKS 471 LEVERINGTON AVE ROXBOROUGH
4 BECK’S CAJUN CAFÉ READING TERMINAL MARKET
5 BLACKBIRD PIZZERIA 507 S 6TH
6 CAMPO’S DELI 214 MARKET ST
7 CARMEN’S FAMOUS ITALIAN HOAGIES
8 CHICK’S DELI 906 TOWNSHIP LN CHERRY HILL, NJ
9 CHUBBY’S 5826 HENRY AVE ROXBOROUGH
10 CLEAVERS 108 S 18TH
11 COSMI’S DELI 1501 S 8TH
12 D & M PHILLY CHEESESTEAKS 130 ALMSHOUSE RD RICHBORO
13 DALESSANDRO’S 600 WENDOVER ST ROXBOROUGH
14 DEL ROSSI’S CHEESESTEAK CO.
15 DOMINICS RICHBORO SHOP CNTR
16 DONKEY’S PLACE (Poppy Roll) 1223 HADDON AVE CAMDEN, NJ
17 GENO’S 1219 S 9TH ST
18 GEORGE’S SANDWICH SHOP
19 GOJJO 4540 BALTIMORE AV
20 GOOIE LOOIES 231 MCCLELLAN ST
21 HIPCITYVEG 127 S 18TH
22 HOG ISLAND STEAKS 785 STARR ST
23 ISHKABIBBLE’S EATERY
24 JAYS STEAK & HOAGIE JOINT 1205 HIGHLAND AVE PARKLAND, PA
25 JIMMIE G’S
26 JIM’S STEAKS SOUTH STREET
27 JOE’S STEAKS + SODA SHOP 6030 TORRESDALE AVE
28 JOE’S STEAKS AND SODA SHOP FORMERLY CHINKS
29 JOHN’S PIZZA 630 LANCASTER AV FRAZER
30 JOHN’S ROAST PORK 14 EAST SNYDER AVE PENNSPORT
31 LARRY’S STEAKS 2459 N 54TH ST
32 LAZARO’S PIZZERIA AND GRILL
33 LEE’S HOAGIE HOUSE STREET RD BENSALEM
34 LITTLE SICILY II 1600 S. COLUMBUS
35 LORENZO’S 900 CHRISTIAN ITALIAN MARKET
36 MAMA’S PIZZERIA 426 BELMONT
37 MAX’S STEAKS 3653 GERMANTOWN AVE
38 McNALLY’S 427 RHAWN
39 MCNALLY’S TAVERN 8624 GERMANTOWN
40 MEATHEADZ CHEESESTAKES 2653 BRUNSWICK PIKE LAWRENCE TWP NJ
41 ONE POUND CHEESE STEAKS 2661 KENSINGTON 
42 OREGON STEAKS 2654 S. 10TH
43 PASTRAMI AND THING’S 24 S. 18TH
44 PAT’S 1237 E PASSYUNK AVE
45 PHILIP’S STEAKS 2234 W PASSYUNK AV
46 PHILLY CHEESESTEAKS ‘N WINGS 204 W RIDGE PK LIMERICK PA
47 PHILLY IT CHEESESTEAKS 2179 GALLOWAY ROAD BENSALEM
48 PUDGE’S STEAKS & HOAGIES 1555 SUMNEYTOWN PIKE KULPSVILLE
49 RALPH & RICKEY’S 2700 S 7TH ST
50 READING TERMINAL MARKET 51 N 12TH
51 SAAD’S HALAL RESTAURANT 4500 WALNUT
52 SHANKS ORIGINAL 901 S. COLUMBUS BLVD
53 SILVIO’S DELI & BAKERY 100 N YORK RD HATBORO, PA
54 SONNY’S FAMOUS STEAKS 228 MARKET ST
55 SPOT GOURMET BURGERS 2821 W. GIRARD 
56 STEAK’S ON SOUTH
57 STEVE’S PRINCE OF STEAKS 7200 BUSTLETON
58 TONY LUKE’S 39 E OREGON AVE
59 WIZ KIDS, VEGAN! 124 S. 19th
60 WIZ KIDZ CH.STEAKS 85 E ELIZ. AV BETH. PA
61 WOODROW’S 630 SOUTH

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