No. 53: The Cheese Steak at Steuben's Food Service and Steuben's Arvada
Although a Philadelphia native might scoff at any incarnation of the classic cheese steak made outside the City of Brotherly Love, any homesick wanderer will be happy with the almost-true-to-form version Steuben's is frying up. After all, to make this delectable sandwich, Steuben's starts with a long, hearth-baked roll from Amoroso's in Philly, shipped in frozen straight from the bakery. Not that freezing affects the final sandwich — the bread tastes fresh and chewy, just as it does in its home town.
Keep in mind that you're ordering a little piece of American food history: The original cheese steak was created in 1930 by Pat Olivieri in Philadelphia. While many ways of whipping up this sandwich have prevailed through the decades, it's widely agreed upon that the dish needs thinly sliced beef and melted cheese, a combination at which Steuben's excels.
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The kitchen fills those Amaroso's rolls with piping-hot chip steak, a thinly sliced and pressed beef product that Steuben's chops up and coats with cheese. While a traditional cheese steak often gets made with Cheese Whiz or American cheese or provolone, Steuben's sub gets an upgrade in the form of a four-cheese béchamel sauce. This gives the sandwich a gooey, melty texture that melds perfectly with the tender pieces of beef.
Get your dish loaded with griddled onions, peppers and/or mushrooms, and marvel at the way it all blends together into a soft sandwich of comfort-food dreams. The staff won't blink an eye if you want to enhance your order even more with a dose of green chiles, bacon, jalapeños, or whatever else your heart may desire (as long as it's on Steuben's list of extras, that is). The beast of a sandwich comes with a side of slightly spicy giardiniera, an Italian-American relish that blends vegetables and peppers in oil and works wonderfully when spooned on top of the meat-and-cheese mixture.
Hungry for more? All of the dishes in our 2016 countdown are linked below.
No. 100: Masala Beef at Biju's Little Curry Shop
No. 99: Bacon Shrimp and Grits at Bacon Social House
No. 98: Porchetta and Kimchi Sandwich at Brider
No. 97: Squab-and-Sunchoke Tortellini at Abejas
No. 96: Housemade Burrata at Viand
No. 95: Schweinshaxe at Rhein Haus
No. 94 Kimchi Jeon at Seoul BBQ
No. 93: Zuppa Pomodoro at Parisi Italian Market & Deli
No. 92: The Ocean Salad at Sushi-Rama
No. 91: The Signature Bowl from Churn & Burn
No. 90: Green Chorizo at Los Compadres
No. 89: The Diavola Calzone at Pino's Neighborhood Pizzeria
No. 88: Biscuits and Green Chile at the Noshery
No. 87: Chirashi at Izu Sushi
No. 86: Brisket and Ribs at GQue Championship BBQ
No. 85: The Tornado at the Chowder Room
No. 84: Korean Fried Chicken Wings at Yong Gung
No. 83: A Meatball Hero at Lil' Ricci's New York Pizzeria
No. 82: Shakshuka at Stowaway Coffee + Kitchen
No. 81: Late-Night Ramen at Brazen
No. 80: Potato Tacos at El Tejado
No. 79: Corned Beef Heart at theWay Back
No. 78: The Fried Bologna Sandwich at Snarfburger
No. 77: Sweet Corn Mezzaluna at Bar Dough
No. 76: Duck Confit at Table 6
No. 75: Croque Monsieur at Fire
No. 74: Tahini Cookies at the Preservery
No. 73: The Alferd Packer Salad at MAD Greens
No. 72: The Tuna Poke Bowl at Ohana Island Kitchen
No. 71: Mini Chile Rellenos at La Loma
No. 70: The Combination Banh Mi at Vinh Xuong Bakery
No. 69: The Falafel Waffle at Moxie Eatery
No. 68: Korean Fried Duck Wings at Chow Urban Grill
No. 67: Spaghetti Alla Carbonara at Spatola
No. 66: The Classic Burger from Skirted Heifer
No. 65: The Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocado at Poppies
No. 64: Super Pass Key Special at Pass Key
No. 63: How the West Was Won at Dozens Restaurant
No. 62: Manzo With Polenta at Spuntino
No. 61: P & S Snack Mix at the Pig & the Sprout
No. 59-60: Sloppers at Gray's Coors Tavern and Diego's
No. 58: Potstickers at Zoe Ma Ma
No. 57: Griddle Cooked Bullfrog at Yum Yum Spice
No. 56: Macaroni and Cheese at Work & Class
No. 55: Lobster, Egg and Caviar Bruschetta at Bar Fausto
No. 54: Orecchiette at Coperta