Cheesesteak Review #53: Rick’s Steaks of Philadelphia
2.5 out of 5 stars
Rick’s Steaks has been a pretty popular name around the Philadelphia area the past 20-30 years when talks of good quality cheesesteaks takes place. For the longest time they had a stand located in the Reading Terminal Market, but because of various reasons, some even being political, their lease was not renewed and they were forced to vacate the market after being there for a long time and being the go-to place for a good cheesesteaks when shopping and walking around the Reading Terminal Market located in center city across from the Pennsylvania Convention Center. After vacating the market they opened up another location which they have since moved out of, and as of early 2011 they now have a space located in the food court of The Shops at Liberty Place located in center city. They also currently have a stand located at Lincoln Financial Field, the home of the Philadelphia Eagles. I don’t know their full history so I won’t try to act like I know what I am talking about any further. Sticking with the same theme as all of my other reviews I ordered a cheesesteak with provolone and fried onions from Rick’s.
Bread-The bread wasn’t very good. It tasted fine, but it was a little too chewy. It was a Liscio roll which are usually always pretty good in flavor, texture, and freshness. However; the roll with my cheesesteak was a little stale, but I don’t know how that could have been the case unless they served me my cheesesteak with a roll left over from the previous day because I ate the cheesesteak from them around noon, right after they opened. So who knows. It did a pretty good job absorbing the grease from the meat.
Cheese-The cheese was actually pretty good. There was a lot of it and it was mixed throughout the entire sandwich. It also tasted amazing. It definitely ranks up there with the best tasting provolone I have had since starting this blog.
Meat-The meat was by far the worst part of the cheesesteak. For starters it was dry and tough to chew. It also didn’t have a taste. They didn’t use any salt and pepper to season it so it tasted like cardboard. Also they use thick cut pieces of meat. Even though I am a fan of diced up meat I wasn’t going to let this change affect my rating, but I’m sorry, the pieces of meat were just too thick and it was impossible to chew. I ended up tearing at the meat with my teeth. The whole sandwich was like this, so it’s not like they just mismanaged a small amount of meat. Even though the meat was dry, and tough to chew it produced a ton of grease. Luckily the horrible tasting roll absorbed most of it so there wasn’t too much of a mess left after I was done eating the cheesesteak. No lie, I have never had worse tasting meat before in my life.
Amount-The amount of the ingredients included were all pretty much average. If anything they had a little more cheese and onions than meat but that’s a good thing because I can only imagine how much worse the meat would have been without the cheese and onions mixed around it. The bread they used was around 10 inches so it was a descent sized cheesesteak and it did a good job filling me up.
Fried Onions-The fried onions were pretty standard as well. They were fried pretty evenly to a nice caramel color and crispy texture. They were also mixed throughout the entire cheesesteak so I don’t really have any negatives to discuss about the fried onions.
I was really expecting a lot more from Rick’s Steaks. Unfortunately I would never recommend their cheesesteak to anyone, not even to my worst enemy. Maybe it was just a bad day for them, or maybe the cook was hung over and just didn’t give a damn about the food he was preparing. Who knows. I gave them a shot, and they failed to impress me so I won’t be back. Unfortunately if you are at The Shops at Liberty Place and craving a cheesesteak you are out of luck as there aren’t any other cheesesteak places to order from. So try something else from Rick’s and hopefully you will have a better experience than I did. They have a wide variety of food available on their menu, and I am pretty sure not all of it can suck as bad as their cheesesteak so you might get lucky and actually eat something that tastes pretty good. Good luck if you do decide to stop by Rick’s Steaks.