December 8, 2011
CERTAIN MENU items make me sad. Take the Caesar salad, for instance. The contemporary Caesar salad is a depressing thing indeed. You can find them anywhere and they're generally lousy. When I see one listed on a menu - usually hovering somewhere near the bottom, making its lame pitch to add grilled chicken or buffalo shrimp - it's too often a tip-off as to what sort of banal, unimpressive restaurant I'm sitting in. I can immediately feel a sigh forming. Progress is usually a good thing.
November 3, 2011 |
The aroma of fried onions hung in the air Wednesday as the Fraternal Order of Police dedicated a plaque in front of Geno's Steaks in South Philadelphia, memorializing Joey Vento, the controversial cheesesteak magnate and philanthropist who died Aug. 23. FOP chaplain Joseph Cella gave the invocation at the ceremony, similar to those given for officers who die in the line of duty. "It seems quite appropriate in our Catholic, Christian faith, which Joey was raised in, that this, the day we commemorate all souls, we would recognize Joey," Cella said.
October 6, 2011 |
HOW YA LIKE yer cheesesteak? Whiz Wit'? Maybe with a side of cocaine and Xanax? Such a delicacy would have been possible at South Street's Jim's Steaks, if not for police intervention. Over the summer, investigators uncovered alleged drug dealing inside the steak joint and arrested one of Jim's managers, Andre McMillian. McMillian was nabbed by cops on Aug. 4 as he supervised the cooks preparing cheesesteaks behind the counter, said Lt. Joseph Bologna, one of the arresting officers.
September 29, 2011 |
State Store Pick of the Week Pinot Noir La Merika Central Coast, California $11.99 (sale price through Oct. 23; regularly $14.99) Pinot Noir is a cool-climate grape that thrives in the vineyards near California's Pacific coastline. This one (PLCB Item No. 3934) has more depth and complexity than most under $15 and features a scent of strawberries and raspberries along with a woodsy spice quality. It's terrific with meats and poultry, of course, but can also handle trickier vegetarian or seafood dishes.
August 24, 2011 |
Joey Vento, the impresario of cheesesteaks whose "speak English" sign at his South Philly sandwich shop made him famous to some, infamous to others, died Tuesday of a heart attack. A multimillionaire who started with little more than the change in his pocket, Vento, 71, built his Geno's Steaks into an institution nearly as well known as the Liberty Bell. His arrival on the national stage came via a 2006 controversy, when he erected signs that advised his customers at Ninth and Passyunk that if they wanted to eat, they better order in English.
July 12, 2011 |
Police are looking for a man who knocked down the manager of Jim's Steaks on South Street and stole nearly $32,000 he was taking to the bank. The 60-year-old manager left the cash-only cheesesteak restaurant at Fourth and South Streets about 5:30 p.m. Sunday and headed for his car, which police said was parked at a lot on Bainbridge Street. As he walked down the 600 block of Leithgow Street, a man came out from beside a car, ran toward him, and tackled him, police said. After a struggle, police said, the assailant fled with the bag full of cash.
July 12, 2011 |
It's been a tough week for one of Philadelphia's original cheesesteak shops. Nearly a week after the co-owner of Jim's Steaks, William Proetto, passed away, a 60-year-old manager was robbed over the weekend of $32,000 he was taking to the bank. The third-generation employee, whose identity has not been released, was tackled as he left the shop at 4th and South streets Sunday night, police said. He was not seriously injured. But tragedy can't shake the 72-year-old, family-owned and -operated business.
June 13, 2011 |
A Yahoo headline today makes quite a claim: "How to Make the Perfect Steak Sandwich. " With mayo, arugula and cheddar? And open-faced? No, it's not from the Washington-addled brain of Sen. John Kerry, who once tried to order a cheesesteak hoagie with Swiss here in Philly. It's from a Left Coast gourmet place, with its own ideas. To be fair, the billing doesn't say "Philly cheesesteak," so nobody's arguing authenticity. Still, "perfect" invites comparisons.