bbq beef cheesesteak

phat philly, 24th and valencia, san francisco

originally this lunch was supposed to be from Ike's Place, but it turned out that waiting an hour for a sandwich didn't fit my eating companions' schedule, so we instead went to Phat Philly. this was my second visit to the shop, since it opened at the end of december in a spot once occupied by a middle eastern food shop. the first time I went, I got a cheesesteak with their homemade cheddar beer sauce, and so this time I thought I would try the BBQ beef. first off, I made the mistake of ordering the big (12") cheesesteak instead of the smaller (7"). if you look at the picture at the top of the post, thats actually only half of the sandwich. this was a lot of food, and considering that it was pretty much just beef and bread, the smaller size would have been filling enough. but although it was overwhelming in size, it was also very delicious. the beef is american kobe beef, and was very tender. and the bbq sauce was great- homemade, and aparantly made with mr. pibb! it was sweet and i little spicy, just enough to make my mouth tingly. a fork was necessary to tackle the mountain of BBQ sauce drenched beef and grilled onions, and many napkins were required as well. we all split some of the crosscut fries, which were great, and tasty good dipped in the garlic mayonaisse pictured up top.


  1. that bbq sauce was made with mr. pibb? crazy! i will try to write something up about my sandwich from this place.


  2. i saw that!! i'm planning on adding a link, and i'm still trying to figure out how to rip them off

  3. The Onion Rings here are freakin' amazing. I don't know what they put in them. PCP or bananas or something. Whatever it is, it's outta sight.

  4. Oh, and if you are looking for guest reviews of the place, I should mention that in the interest of authenticity, I took my friend's dad, a gentleman from Philly with often strong and curmudgeonly opinions. Take for example, this rather verbose email from him when the suggestion was brought up:

    "I'm trying to be fair. And I WILL try to be fair when we go there, but
    I read the reviews. I agree that the people who reviewed this place were probably California people. The people who claimed they were from Phila gave themselves away by saying that it was all right to eat CheezWiz on a steak sandwich. One of them even spelled TastyKakes wrong.
    I can confidently state that these reviewers were NOT native Philadelphians. Maybe they went to school in Phila and thought that going down to South Street on Friday night and eating a Jim's cheesesteak ("wid Wiz") gave them an insight into Phila cuisine. The dead giveaway was references to Pat's and Geno's. These places are open all night, all weekend, and at 2 a.m. the drunken college kids are creating an uproar that I don't know how the neighbors have tolerated so long. These sandwiches are MASS PRODUCED. No matter what the reviewers say, native "true" Philadelphians would never be caught dead there. OR ordering a steak wid Wiz.
    Now that I've got that off my chest--Oh, oh! One more thing: waffle fries, garlic fries, beer cheese sauce, BBQ sauce, carmalized onions, avocado, etc do not exist in Phila! My guess is that 80% of Philadelphians have never even SEEN an avocado--now, that being said:
    Let's try it.
    When I visited Annie the first time in Berkeley, she took me to a cheesesteak place on Durant--a PHILLY cheesesteak place. I ordered one with everything. Besides the obvious, they put on mayonaisse, mustard and avocado. It was a perfectly fine sandwich. I enjoyed it. I got a kick out of it, but I enjoyed it. So let's forget about how close it comes to a REAL Philly cheesesteak and just enjoy ourselves.
    I'm a little worried that a lot of the reviewers mentioned skimpy portions. There's probably no need to remind you that John's Roast Pork (by many accounts the #1 cheesesteak place in the city) puts a pound of ingredients--A POUND--on each sandwich. So I won't."

  5. thats awesome! I'm always amazed by the amount of passion that philly cheesesteaks inspire in people. and there really seems to be a lack of consensus about what a "real" philly cheesesteak is. I guess I'll have to go to philly to find out, but in the meantime, I'm pretty happy eating inauthentic cheesesteaks too.