Five cheesesteaks, three milkshakes, and two ice cream sandwiches. I didn’t know I could eat that much, but I did last week at the American Cheesesteak Company on Davie Street which has only been open for a month. According to the owner Andy, Philadelphia is home to more than 2,000 cheesesteak eateries. He and his team, including The Food Network’s very own Chef Anthony Sedlak, spent a year developing the menu. It turns out that this American classic, complete with Cheese Wiz, has found itself at home in Vancouver’s west end.
Until then, I’d never had a Philly cheesesteak and I went in with the expectation of salty, greasy, stringy beef. I was misguided: totally surprised at the first few bites of The Philly- shaved rib eye seasoned with salt and pepper, and Cheese Wiz on a bun. Really, don’t knock the Wiz until you’ve tried it because it fits. It wasn’t soggy either, which was surprising as the buns are so soft.
I also tried Le Bifteck, The Big Shot, The Cowboy, and The Coppola. Quick breakdown:
Le Bifteck – My favourite. It was the refreshing option with arugula, brie, Dijon, and also with onion jam which is a bit sweet. The flavours are unexpected but really complement each other. My mouth waters when I think about it.
The Big Shot – Immediately I tasted black pepper and cheese. The mushrooms were nicely sautéed. I found the black pepper a little over powering; the rest of the flavours got a little lost.
The Cowboy – It’s the beef answer to pulled pork with lots of spicy barbecue sauce, but I feel it’s a safe choice. You can get pulled pork all over the city, so go for something different such as the The Coppola (see below)
The Coppola – It has nice spicy flavours. Loved the hot banana peppers, not too hot and a bit tangy, balanced nicely with the roasted tomato pieces and provolone. The bun did not hold up so well, maybe this is the one that has to be toasted a bit first, but you have to try this.
I had the luxury of trying all three flavours of milkshakes. I tried to be unbiased, but the strawberry milkshake was the best. It was thick and creamy, not too sweet, and not too frozen, very drinkable. It was gone before I realized what was happening. For something so simple, not a lot of places can get a milk shake right so I probably should have taken my time and enjoyed that a bit more. Oh well, there is always next time.
Lately the trend seems to be double cooked fries, and they are always golden and crispy. I loved the ACC fries, topped with parsley, parmesan, and garlic and served with Bacon Mayonnaise dipping sauce, this is a decadent treat. Why isn’t everything served with Bacon Mayonnaise? It’s delicious. Seriously good.
And that is where I finished with ice-cream sandwiches. I really liked The American Cheesesteak Co and I’m excited to see where this goes. It was definitely above and beyond my expectations and I’ll be coming back for sure. It’s an easy going, uncomplicated place to eat and I can see why it is busy all the time. Andy and Marty are cool people who know what they’re doing and there is great chemistry with Chef Anthony Sedlak. I have to say, no one in their right mind should try to eat everything I ate, that is a lot of food and a lot of stuff got packed up and taken home to be savoured again. Portions are generous; there is no way that a very hungry person wouldn’t be satisfied with one of these cheesesteaks. Try it and let me know what you think!
You can check them out at www.americancheesesteak.com and on twitter @thecheesesteak