Jake’s For Philly CheeseSteak

I am in Philly for 3 days at a conference. Tomorrow I give a speech.

While in Philly I had to get a cheesesteak. None of the well known places is near my hotel so I asked the guy who parks cars where to go. He seemed like a local guy. He recommended Jake’s.

I walked the 4 blocks over to Jake’s and immediately sensed that this could be my kind of place. It was clearly a local hangout. Simple decor, a dozen or so tables. And then there was Jake.

Jake was a late 50s white guy wearing a white T-shirt that fit too tightly over a large gut. A 2-3 day stubble beard in the style of an older, crotchety guy– no McDreamy cool stubble, not Jake. A hearing aid was in his left ear.

His voice was low and not loud. When he spoke, he spoke “regular guy”. He did not take the orders, he had employees for that. He did, however hover over his people making sure that they were taking the orders and ringing them up correctly. Every once in awhile he would exhort the 4 guys in the open kitchen, right behind the counter where you ordered, to work faster.

He clearly cared about his patrons (my word I cannot imagine him using that word). As someone handed me my bag, he came over to check out that I had gotten what I ordered. As I waited for my food a long line of working folks came in to order food. This place was a joint in all the best definitions of that word.

The food was solid. Since I avoid wheat, and therefore no roll for me,  I had both a Cheesesteak Royal and some buffalo wings. The cheesesteak was tasty but nothing more. The sauce on the wings though was both unusual and great. It was mildly spicy but unlike anything you would find in Chicago. I am not enough of a food guy to even describe what the sauce was made of. I just know that I wish I had a spoon so I could get every last bit of sauce.

If you are ever in downtown Philly, stop by and say hi to Jake. It’s worth the stop.

About 48facets
What you read is what you get.

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