I've been cheesesteak deprived for years, ever since a local chain, Mr. Submarine, was driven out of business by the onslaught of Subway. I loved their cheesesteaks, the first I'd ever had, and several of their other subs and pasta dishes. I always got bell peppers on mine with the onions and beef; I guess that qualifies as a pepper steak. I never heard anything about cheese whiz nor saw it being applied to any other's sandwiches. I'm pretty sure the proprietors were from East coast somewhere, tho; their subs were very different (and much better) than any thing else I'd encountered here.
Now comes Jake's Philly Steaks (actually in business since 1991 but I just found out about them). The place is decorated with pennants of Philadelphia pro and college teams, posters of the teams, and yellowed clippings from the Enquirer and Bulletin.
The bread is supposed to be from Amoroso's. TastyKakes are listed on the online menu but not in store; the counterman told me they might have some in a couple of weeks when his brother comes down from Philly
The online menu claims thinly sliced rib eye but the in store menu says its thinly sliced 'inner round.'
It's a good sandwich, served open-faced. I've had it wit and witout and I like 'em both -- I'll have trouble deciding which to order next visit. Witout there's real good beef flavor and it's real juicy; the onions have a little crispness left in 'em - a nice touch. Wit, of course, the cheese whiz overpowers the beefiness, but it's a great sandwich, too.
There are some items on the menu probably not found at Philadelphia cheesesteak emporia - fajita cheesesteaks (with chile con queso and pico de gallo) and a spicy cajun sausage sub. They have a sign for Yuengling's Black and Tan but the beer isn't actually available. After reading about some of the regional potato chips on Roadfood I was also disappointed all they serve are Lay's and Zapp's.
Authentic? I've never been to Philly so I can't say, but they're good sandwiches.
A couple of chains have popped up here -- Philly Connection and Texadelphia -- but I haven't tried either of them.