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Scott
Chicago

Philadelphia

Pat's or Geno's: Which has the better cheesesteak?

I'm going to Philly for the first time, and I know this is a heated debate but I gotta ask Trippy: which cheesesteak is better, Pat's or Geno's, and why? Any other favorites I need to try?


13 Answers

top answer by
Brian from Philadelphia

Yes we originated the cheese steak but interesting that this is still a thing. I live two blocks away and find myself at Pat's King of Steaks or Geno's Steaks only once or twice a year for a night cap in the early morning hours.

Philadelphia is having a food revolution and some of the best restaurants on the east coast are here, so why waste a meal on a cheesesteak? Walk southwest half a mile along E Passyunk Ave to find the hottest restaurant street in the city.

Having said all that, I can only suggest the two spots for after 1am when most kitchens in the city close. I'll get a Pizza Pepper Steak wit wiz at Pat's King of Steaks and/or Cheese Fries from Geno's Steaks. Be sure to marvel at the speed, you essentially are handed change and the food at the same time.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Pat's King of Steaks (restaurant)
  2. Geno's Steaks (restaurant)
  3. E Passyunk Ave (attraction)
4 thanks


answered by
Angela from Wilkes Barre

As mentioned Jim's Steaks is my go to for sure. I've had both Pat's and Geno's and Jim's is hands down my favorite. Don't go for the hype, go for the great cheesesteak! The lines can be long, but it's worth it. Also, you really should try the Philly staple - Whiz & Onions. If you're one of those people who like provolone and ketchup on your steak, fine, but get yourself two steaks, one traditional, and one the way you like it... trust. :)


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Jim's Steaks (restaurant)
3 thanks


answered by
amy from New York City

Couldn't agree more with Danyelle. Jim's Steaks on South Street (right across from Theatre of The Living Arts) has the best steaks in Philly, hands down. Di Nic's in Reading Market is a close 2nd. Even the street vendors around Center City have better steaks than Pat or Geno's. 


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Jim's Steaks (restaurant)
  2. Theatre of The Living Arts (attraction)
  3. Di Nic's (attraction)
  4. Center City (neighborhood)
3 thanks


answered first by
Danyelle from Philadelphia

Honestly, try one of the other places. I always bring my visiting friends to Jim's Steaks on South if a cheesesteak is what they really want. But I highly recommend Paesano's in the Italian Market or Di Nic's in Reading Terminal Market for better Philly sandwiches.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Jim's Steaks (restaurant)
  2. Paesano's (restaurant)
  3. Di Nic's (attraction)
  4. Reading Terminal Market (restaurant)
3 thanks


answered by
Steve from Mechanicsburg

Cheesesteaks in this city are a bit like politics and religion. Everybody has their favorites, and nobody will convince them otherwise (usually). That said...as Dhruv indicates, skip Pat's and Geno's. Those places are for bumbling tourists and late night drunks. John's Roast Pork has very good cheesesteaks, but as the name indicates, their roast pork sandwiches (with provolone and spinach) are to die for.

Tony Luke's is also very strong for both cheesesteaks and pork.

I recently discovered Philip's Steaks on Passyunk, and it's been a good place to hit when I don't want to run over to the John's/Tony Luke's neighborhoods.

If you find yourself on South St, Jim's Steaks is good. Better than Pat's or Geno's, but not as good as the places I mentioned above.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. John's Roast Pork (attraction)
  2. Tony Luke's (restaurant)
  3. Philip's Steaks (restaurant)
  4. South St (attraction)
  5. Jim's Steaks (restaurant)
2 thanks


answered by
Dhruv from Philadelphia

I am with Brian. Skip Pat's and Geno's. That's for people who travel the world only to eat at every Hard Rock Cafe. Aside from the great recommendations below I enjoy John's Roast Pork- a south philly gym for grease and meat. http://www.johnsroastpork.com/


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. John's Roast Pork (attraction)
2 thanks


answered by
Princess from White Deer, Pennsylvania

Pats is my favorite but both are equally delicious. :-)


1 thanks


answered by
Russ from Pittsburgh

Between those 2 I'm a Pats guy, but honestly I think Johns Roast Pork is better than both. Not only is their roast pork pretty much the best sandwich in the city but their cheesesteak will give anyone's a run for the money.


1 thanks


answered by
Kathie from Dallas

I lived in Philly for school and tried all of the popular cheesesteak places. I honestly think both Pats and Genos are mediocre - they both have a pile of already cooked steak sitting in a big pile on a flat top and just slap on the toppings into a bun when you order. I would recommend Steve's Prince of Steaks  in center city, and Jim's Steaks is good too if youre in that area. Be sure to stop by reading terminal market if you havent been, there are cute vendors in there as well as a dinics for pork sandwiches. 


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Steve's Prince of Steaks (restaurant)
  2. Jim's Steaks (restaurant)
1 thanks


answered by
Debbie from Colwyn, Pennsylvania

The best place is called Leo's Steak Shop on the outskirts of Philadelphia in Delaware County.  If you are up for exploration, it will be well worth the trip. 




Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Leo's Steak Shop (restaurant)
1 thanks


answered by
Eric from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

I prefer Jim's Steakshands down. Pat's and Geno's are merely name references to "Philly" Cheesesteaks. It's unfortunate that most tourist and sports announcers only mention Pat's and Geno's for a "Philly" cheesesteak.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Jim's Steaks (restaurant)
1 thanks


answered by
Gloria from Louisville, Kentucky

Geno's is much better than Pat's.

The other (and i think better) spot is Delassandro's in Roxborough.


1 thanks


answered by
John from Philadelphia

To answer your question directly, Pat's and Geno's are comparable in terms of actual cheesesteak. If you have moral proclivities, Geno's now-deceased owner Joey Vento was a bit of a xenophobe and I believe the storefront is still replete with signs that state that you must speak in English, etc. All that aside ...


If you want a proper cheesesteak - head to Jim's Steaks as the posters below note. If you want a taste of a proper cheesesteak and other delicious bites - I'd recommend Jake's Sandwich Board as well! The potato pancakes aka latkes are on point too.

If you really want to go off the beaten path - check out Gooey Looies. The biggest cheesesteak you've ever seen and probably the cheapest per bite. http://www.bellyofthepig.com/2014/04/gooey-looies-review.html


And seeing that you're from Chicago - I'd say you might have it best with Philly's Best which was one of the better ones I've had - ironic that Philly's Best is in IL and none are actually in Philly :)


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Jim's Steaks (restaurant)
  2. Jake's Sandwich Board (restaurant)
  3. Gooey Looies (restaurant)
1 thanks




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