No, it’s not the Second Coming. The cold hard truth is that it’s a California restaurant chain with mini mall outposts in places like Pleasanton, Livermore, Chico, San Leandro, and now Santa Rosa.
But I’m also not going to pretend that dunking a meaty 7-incher with onions, peppers and provolone into a container of, ahem, melted cheese product isn’t a solid thrill in an otherwise ho-hum day.
Located just off Stony Point and Sebastopol Roads, both rabid fans who’ve sampled the goods elsewhere and those just jonesing for a taste of Philly won’t walk away disappointed.
What makes this spot different than any other chain is that the Cheese Steak folks aim for authenticity.
They use Amoroso’s rolls (a Philadelphia soft roll staple). You can hear the ring of spatulas chopping steak, onions and peppers on the grill. You can get fat steak fries on the side. And a TastyKake (another City of Brotherly Love passion) for dessert.
The menu includes straight-up cheese steaks ($4.49 for a 7-incher) along with add-ons like mushrooms, garlic, BBQ sauce, spinach and (ugh) pizza sauce. You can also get a veggie version or the whole kit and caboodle on a bed of lettuce.
Whatever your pick, don’t forget the cheese sauce. Melty, Cheez-Whiz-esque goop that works as well on your ‘wich as on your fries, fingers or, you know, whatever. In Philly, they call it Whiz-wit. You can just call it Santa Rosa style.
The Cheese Steak Shop, 750 Stony Point Road, Santa Rosa, 707.527.9877