Forefathers vs. Philly's Famous: Philly Cheesesteak Challenge

Amy Edelen
Cheesesteak from Forefathers

The first version of the Philadelphia cheesesteak was invented in the 1930s by brothers Pat and Harry Olivieri, who owned a hot dog stand in South Philly. Since then, the popularity of the sandwich increased and has become a national favorite.

Philly cheesesteak sandwiches are made from thinly sliced rib eye beef and melted cheese (typically American or Cheese Whiz) on an Italian bread roll. Common toppings include onions, peppers and mushrooms.

We ventured to two local restaurants, Forefathers and Philly's Famous, to compare and contrast -- and pick a victor. ('Cue the theme song to Rocky.)

See also: Squash Blossom vs. Joe's Diner: Biscuits and Gravy Beatdown

In This Corner: Forefathers

Amy Edelen
Dining area at Forefathers

The Setup: Forefathers, located in Tempe, has the look of a chain restaurant from the interior (think similar to Chipotle's); however, it is completely family owned. Tony and Mary Crump started the restaurant as a way to provide Valley area residents with authentic cheesesteaks. Customers can select a regular ($7.75) or large ($10.75) sized sandwich, which comes with your choice of chicken or steak, and four choices of cheese: provolone, Cheese Whiz, white American or mozzarella.

The Good: We selected the regular sized cheesesteak made with thinly sliced sirloin, American cheese, onions and green peppers. The sandwich was prepared quickly and had an ample portion of steak. Service was friendly here and the restaurant was very busy when we arrived during dinner time.

The Bad: The cheese-to-steak ratio was a little off and the sandwich was really messy; half of the steak ended up on our tray.

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