Spotlight Philadelphia : Pat's + Geno's

Getting a classic Philly cheesesteak from Pat's King of Steaks or Geno's was recommended to us by many for a 'touristy stop' in Philadelphia. The two legendary 24-hour, 7 days a week competitors (Pat's and Geno's) sit kitty-corner and have been going at it for years about who dishes up the best 'wich.

As we sat and ate our sandwiches on the vintage outdoor tables that hot summer night, we felt like we were whisked back into time looking up at photographs of classic-era celebrity customers plastered all over, and brick painted walls of famous Italians, while listening to blaring tunes of convertibles driving by with their tops down.

Since there are various opinions on who cooks up the best cheese-whiz covered steak sandwich in town, we decided to try both joints, and Pat's King of Steaks won our vote with a bit more flavorful and textured sandwich. Although to be honest, I've had better non whiz sandwiches at other places.... the experience we had was worth the dark back alley searching trip.

Next time you are in Philadelphia and you want to order one up... make sure to read the posted 'order directions' correctly or I am afraid you will be treated like this.

For those who have been, tell me about your experiences.


rachael said...

i'm from philadelphia and know the geno's/pat's war very well. i myself prefer geno's, whiz with. well i'm a vegetarian now, i should say used to. now it's whiz with hold the meat :) also, geno's posted a sign saying, "this is america, speak english when ordering!" or something like that. i don't support businesses that conduct themselves in that manner. anyways, the whole shebang is pretty obnoxious if you ask me. it is fun for tourists though. it pretty much sums up what philly is all about too. rather representational, i suppose! i'm glad you enjoyed it. you're right neither establishment has the best cheesesteaks in the city. there are far better places off the beaten path.

Natalie* said...

i'm partial to tony luke's . thy that next time....bettah.

thrilled by the thought said...

lol. I LOVE that you posted the Soup Nazi!

Julia said...

Oh gosh, this post made me laugh! Well, okay, the Seinfield episode and reference to your experience like that made me laugh! I'll have to ask my cousins who live in Philadelphia which they prefer!

Thanks for the heads up!

jozette said...

I live in Philadelphia as well, so I've been to what we call "Pat's and Geno's" (or 'PatsandGenos' even though they are two separate places) a million times. Well, maybe a hundred. And I'm a veggie now, too, so it's been awhile. But I always preferred Pat's. I think they have better bread. And yes, the ordering must done correctly. If you want a sandwich with cheeze whiz and onions? It's a Whiz Wit.

SARAHSPY said...

i also prefer pats over genos (i lived in philly for 2 years before moving to nyc). ive done the taste-off a couple of times & i always find that pats' meat is more tender/better quality.

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