Late night eating in Phoenix is lame. Besides fast food and chain diners, it’s pretty much non-existent. Most of the local restaurants close between 8 PM and 10 PM, even on Friday and Saturday nights. Because of this, I was initially excited when I found Philadelphia Sandwich company, since (1) I am usually up late on the weekends, and (2) I consider myself a cheesesteak connoisseur. Unfortunately, my excitement and hope for finding a quality cheesesteak crumbled after visiting Philadelphia Sandwich Company.
Philadelphia Sandwich Company is located right in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale. It’s surrounded by high end bars and clubs, which being open 24 hours gives it the clear advantage to cater to all the drunkards stumbling out after 2 AM. My dining companion and I arrived before the madness, around 11 PM. When we walked up to the counter to order, the girl behind the counter acted like we were inconveniencing her by patronizing the establishment. I don’t know, maybe she could smell my “east coast upbringing” and knew that I didn’t fit the Scottsdale profile? Anyway, we ordered 2 cheesesteaks with wiz and waited for a few minutes. The restaurant really only has a few stools and some counter space around perimeter of the dining area so when our food was up we took it outside where they have a few tables and chairs. Oh yeah, I don’t know what kind of club music they had blasting there, but it was absolutely annoying. If I want to hear that crap I’ll go down the street to one of the clubs.
Getting right to the crux of the matter, the cheesesteaks were not up to par. the bread was some sort of thick, dry, crusty french bread; completely the wrong kind of
bread for a cheesesteak. Not only was it the wrong kind of bread, there was too much of it. Another point: the portion of meat was rather small for a $7.50 sandwich and was bland, fairly chewy, and full of gristle. Maybe after 15 beers this thing would have tasted like ambrosia of the gods but being completely sober I found it to be pretty lousy. I will say this however, that the people watching on the Scottsdale sidewalk was a lot better than the sandwich I was eating! I thought I was in some sort of open casting call for a B movie about an invasion of pretentious, shallow children. The women had more plastic than a mannequin factory and I lost count of how many douchebag men with frosted hair walked by me. I had to stop at a Walmart on the way home just to cleanse myself of the snobbery that oozed all over me while I sat out on 5th Avenue.
So in the end what did we learn? Philly Sandwich Company fails to deliver on the goods but if you want some good people watching it’s a sure thing.
Philadelphia Sandwich Company
7158 E 5th Ave
Scottsdale, AZ 85251