Best Cheesesteak - 2004
Taste of Philly
The founder of Taste of Philly, a six-seater joint, came from Yeadon, Pennsylvania, and its new owners are from South Jersey -- but that's okay, because Jersey is a lot closer to Philly than, say, Littleton or Lyons. The space is decorated in East Coast-refugee style, with a bunch of Philadelphia paraphernalia tacked up on the limited wall space, including the requisite framed print of Rocky Balboa. More important, Taste of Philly's Philly delivers the true taste of a Philadelphia cheesesteak -- an ex-pat restaurant's only real duty. Tender meat, chopped rough, is cooked perfectly on the grill, with provolone melted all through the meat, and the delicious result -- along with thin, stringy fried onions -- is then packed into an Amaroso roll (recognized as the Philly cheesesteak standard the world over). All in all, Taste of Philly puts together a memorable sandwich, the kind that people would drive across time zones for. But aren't you glad you don't have to?