Now, let me be perfectly clear: I haven't actually sampled the wares at Phat Philly. Yet. Unfortunately I, like so many of you, have been gripped by the post-holiday need to eat only leafy greens and garbanzo beans. However, when I recover from this brief stint of healthfulness, I plan to march right over to Phat Philly for a cheesesteak ($6-$10), because it seems like they're doing it all right. Amoroso rolls imported from Philadelphia, natural antibiotic-free beef from Niman Ranch and Creekstone Farms, and, in addition to the de rigeur cheese Whiz, they also have housemade cheddar-beer sauce.
Drinking food: I'm not talking about liquid food, but about the kind of food that insists on being accompanied by a good drink. In this case, Exhibit A is the cheesesteak, a wonderful sandwich with sautéed steak, onions, peppers, mushrooms and cheese served on a toasted roll with, usually, a little mayo and maybe some mustard. I'm a big fan of the cheesesteaks at Jay's (553 Divisadero). I get mine to go, however, because Jay's doesn't serve beer and I think the proper cheesesteak experience is not complete without a good brew. You can go with a lighter style lager--a Budweiser, for instance--but I like something a little richer and more flavorful, as the cheesesteaks at Jay's are pretty rich themselves and also quite savory.