How to Order a Philly Cheesesteak like a Local

The Philly Cheesesteak debate reminds me a heck of a lot of the Chicago Pizza debate. Everyone has their own opinion about who has the most “original” and best tasting.

Related: Where to find the BEST deep-dish pizza in Chicago 

When it comes to Chicago style pizza, in Chicago the big three are:


Gino’s East

Lou Maltini’s

Each one of them claims to be the best, most authentic and most original pizza joint in all of Chicago. I’ve had them all. It’s a tough call.

I had never had a cheesesteak before in my life so when I found out I was coming to Philadelphia I knew I wanted to hunt down a true authentic Philly Cheesesteak.

When the name of a city is included in the name of a certain food, you know it’s a big deal. Kind of like, New England Clam Chowder. You come to New England you eat clam chowder or (as the locals say chawda).

You come to Philly you eat a cheesesteak.

When it comes to cheesesteaks I had to research not only which places had the best, but then how to order, because supposedly how you order a cheesesteak is a big deal in Philly.

This article said Sonny’s was where cheesesteak heaven was at, and this article told me all about how to order like a local.

IMG_7173When it comes to ordering I learned less is more.

Incorrect: “I’ll have a Philly Cheesesteak without onions and Provolone cheese.”

Correct: “cheese steak, provolone, without”

Translation: cheesesteak with provolone cheese without onions

Trust me they’ll know what you’re saying.

some other places that were highly recommended…

Geno’s Steaks 

Campo’s Deli

Tony Luke’s

Pat’s King of Steaks

There's a big debate about where to find THE BEST Philly Cheesesteak in Philadelphia. I can't settle that debate, BUT I can tell you how to order a Philly like a local.

In your opinion who makes the best Philly Cheesesteaks in all of Philadelphia?


My best friend/roommate from college lives in philly and I can say I have never gotten one the numerous times I’ve gone to visit… I’ve been to Geno’s though and it’s delish!

i am seriously contemplating a trip back to the east coast just so i can try another philly cheesesteak. i’m highly motivated by food. lol

I’ve never had a philly cheesesteak either!! i think its kinda for the same reason- i live on the east coast and ive always been like, i should just go to philly if i want one… but it has yet to happen! I would have scoped out the best places to try too, and i applaud you for ordering like a local! 🙂

why thank you!! my goal every time i’m in a new place is to have some one ask me for directions. weird i know, but if someone is asking me for directions, then clearly i look like a local!! success!! haha.

I’m guilty of never having a Philly Cheesesteak! I’ve made it 26 years without one. Eek. Sounds like I really should get on this. One of my best friends lives in Philadelphia so I’ll definitely have to get one while I visit her!

yes you must!! you will NOT regret it! in fact you may have a new obsession like i do. haha:)

I’ve never been to Sonny’s – had Pat, Geno’s, and I think Steve’s, but I may have to make a pit stop when I’m there in 2 weeks!

i’m jealous! i would love to spend more time in philly in the future, and of course i would love to go back and try geno’s and pats! i’ll be waiting to hear your review! 🙂

Hhaha I remember when you told me you were stopping for a Philly cheesesteak and I was like… this is why we’re friends.

lololol.. for real tho!! that and our shared love of ice cream pretty much mean we’re friends for life…

Love this and can’t wait to check it out!!

yes yes!! obviously i need to go back so i can check out the other options and truly decide who’s is best! haha 😉

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