Philadelphia is an awesome town. There’s really no other way to explain it. The city of Brotherly Love is home to the Fightin’ Phils, Liberty Hall, and the gang at Paddy’s Pub. This past weekend, my friend Albert and I ventured down 95 South for another famous Philly staple…Cheese Steaks!
We arrived hungry and were torn between two of the biggest names in the steak sandwich business: Pat’s King of Steaks and Geno’s. For over 45-years, these two establishments (they are right across the street from one another) have been duking it out for steak supremacy. Geno’s uses flashy lights and celebrities to lure customers while Pat’s mantra is more old-fashioned. For over 70 years they’ve been doing it the “Pat’s way”. Luckily, we ran into a “cheese steak expert” and he provided his take on the highly touted rivalry.
Overall, the infamous steak sandwich lived up to my expectations. It was greasy, cheesy, messy, and most importantly tasty! A traditional Pat’s order consists of chopped rib-eye steak and gooey Cheese Whiz slathered between a warm, chewy Italian Roll. I wanted to be “edgy” so I ordered the sandwich wit mushrooms and onions. The rib-eye appeared to be a bit dry but it was surprisingly tender and moist.
However the real star of the show was the bubbly, lava-like Cheese Whiz. You really can’t find this combination of meat and cheese anywhere other than Philly, which is why hundreds of thousands of hungry tourists and locals alike flock to Pat’s King of Steaks. My only complaint was the price. $9.50 for a Pat’s steak sandwich….talk about a tourist trap.
For those of you who don’t know, I am a HUGE Florida Marlins fan and they were in town to take on their NL East rival, the Philadelphia Phillies. I was beyond excited because I was able to watch my favorite players take on the home team. Looking at the picture above, the stadium was filled with red and I was one of 2 FANS (out of over 46,000!!) to don the black and teal colors of the Marlins. Needless to say, I was in hostile territory.
Below are a few photos depicting my time at the ballpark. Oh and Citizens Bank Park is easily one of the better stadiums in all of professional sports. Even if you’re not a fan of baseball, it’s the perfect place to enjoy some beer and piles upon piles of crab fries.
I love getting to the ballpark early to watch batting practice and to get a glimpse of all the behind-the-scenes action. It’s also the best time to snag an autograph.
Everytime a Philly hits a HR (which is VERY often), The neon Liberty Bell lights up and the place erupts in cheers and applause, it’s a very cool scene.
Did I mention it was freezing?!? Albert and I decided to get up out of our seats and explore the stadium. We were also starving so it was a good time to get the legs moving. Oh and here’s a bit of advice….if you’re hungry, make sure you eat BEFORE the game starts. The lines at the ballpark are insane. The Tony Luke’s Cheese Steak line was an hour-long. And it would have taken you close to 2 hours for some Crab Fries.
At first we thought the food would be sub par since there wasn’t a 1-hour wait. But after asking the locals, the location of Bull’s BBQ was the main reason few stood in line. It’s farthest away from the field and restricts patrons from watching the game. We didn’t care, we were hungry and in desperate need of something to warm us up.
We both went with the Pulled Pork BBQ Sandwich. It was a safe call and the sandwich was amazing. As I unwrapped the foil, a cloud of steam rushed up to my face and into my nostrils. The tender pieces of pork were drenched in Bull’s BBQ sauce and piled high atop a soft Bulkie roll. Definitely not your standard ballpark food.
It was a great night. I enjoyed some awesome food and my Marlins escaped with a 4-3 victory over the Phillies. We quickly hopped into a cab and headed back to the hotel for some much-needed R&R. Oh and some Captain to warm us up…..til’ next time….