A few years ago, when Gut Check was still in short pants, a reader and Philadelphia expat asked where he could find a decent cheesesteak in this town. I had no easy answer. Thus began Cheesesteak Quest
There were many contenders, but only one could claim the crown. Earning
four Cheez Whiz jars (out of a possible five) was the cheesesteak at 9th
Street Deli in Soulard.
What makes 9th Street Deli's cheesesteak superior? Pasteurized process cheese product. This remains the only cheesesteak I've encountered in St. Louis that uses the true "cheese" of an authentic Philly cheesesteak, Cheez Whiz.
Cheez Whiz might not be Slow Food, it might not be a color found in nature, but for the tangy gooiness -- the gooey tanginess? -- necessary to coat and accent thinly sliced steak, onions and roasted peppers, it can't be beat.
I have no idea how 9th Street Deli's Philly cheesesteak would fare against a true specimen. It's been a long time since I visited Philadelphia. In St. Louis, though, as far as I'm concerned, it's still the tops.9th Street Deli
900 Shenandoah Street
$6.99I'm counting down -- in no particular order -- 100 of my favorite dishes in St. Louis. Some are well-known, others obscure. Some are expensive, others dirt cheap. All of them, I guarantee, are delicious. Please do not hesitate to share your own favorites via the comments thread.
Previously:#47: Smoked chicken wings at Flavors BBQ Sports Bar & Grill#48: Coffee and a pastry at 222 Artisan Bakery#49: The torta ahogada at Taqueria Durango#50: The "Morganford Mediterranean" Sandwich at Local Harvest Café & Catering#51: Vegetable korma at Gokul Snacks & Sweets#52: Schnitzel & spaetzle at Iron Barley#53: Oxtail stew at De Palm Tree#54: Pho at Pho Long#55: Gyro at Anthonino's Taverna#56: The Lemon Drop Cupcake at the Cup#57: Pupusas at Tres Banderas#58: Gumbo at the Gumbo Shop#59: The burger at Newstead Tower Public House#60: Quesadillas tradicionales at Milagro Modern Mexican