Regional Chain: D’angelo Subs
Long ago, I found that going to a grocery store on an empty stomach is a bad idea. I buy too much, because I’m hungry. I used to live in Boston, and across the street from my favorite grocery store was a D’angelo sub shop. I got into the habit of grabbing a cheesesteak, or half of a cheesesteak, to calm my belly before purchasing groceries.
I grew fond of D’angelo Subs. Rarely outside of the New Jersey / Philadelphia area can one find a good cheesesteak. Having grown up in Pennsylvania and gone to college in Jersey, cheesesteaks were close to my heart. There were no cheesesteak shops in Boston, so D’angelo had the market cornered. But, their subs were delicious.
What’s so great about them? For starters, they’re cooked to order on a grill, not pre-cooked and microwaved, like at Subway. They cook the shaved steak with oil, grilled onions and peppers, and then layer cheese onto the meat while its cooking. They scrape the entire meaty, gooey pile onto a fresh-baked hoagie roll. My cheesesteak pet peeve is when the cold cheese is placed inside the hoagie roll, and the steak is added on top. The cheese often never melts, which ruins the experience. D’angelo offers gooey cheese with every sandwich.
My personal favorite is the Steak Bomb. Genoa salami and capicola ham are added to the steak, and the toppings include peppers, onions, sauteed mushrooms, and melted provolone. It can be very salty, so eaters beware.
My favorite cheesesteak from my youth was by Trip’s Steaks in Cape May, NJ. Something about the melted cheese, the soft, flaky bread, and the cornmeal dusting was heaven to me. But, D’angelos now vies for the top spot. I’d call them my two favorite cheesesteaks, much to the chagrin of many Philadelpheans.
New Englanders swear by D’angelo, and their parent company Papa Gino’s Pizza. If you’re in Red Sox Territory sometime soon, I’d recommend trying one.