food & grocery: Frugal Friday at Fat Philly's & Burgers - iconic sandwiches, onion rings are delicious and inexpensive options
Mary Bilyeu | Contributor
Jeremy and I recently ate at Fat Philly's & Burgers, which serves precisely what it promises, with some barbecue, salads, and side dishes offered on the menu as well. On a recent evening, good ol' comfort food just sounded like the perfect option, and Fat Philly's was a great place to go to satisfy the craving.
As soon as we walked in the door, we were greeted by a welcoming chorus of "hello" from the staff. It wasn't one of those orchestrated requirements (i.e. an official greeter at a big box store or an embarrassing round of "Happy Birthday" meant to mortify both recipient and performers); rather, there were genuine smiles, and one waitress even recognized Jeremy from the spot where he regularly hangs out with his friends. We were greeted as though we were regulars.
Our waitress, Dora, was wonderfully cheerful, and she even tried to save us money by suggesting that I order a combo instead of piecing together a meal. Of course, I was considering photo ops and wanted to see what an appetizer's quantity of food would be, rather than merely a side order's worth; but I truly appreciated her thoughtfulness.
So while Jeremy ordered the Bacon Blue Burger combo (with fries and a drink) for $7.89, I ordered the Philly Steak sandwich pictured above for $6.89. It featured generous quantities of tender beef, and just the right amount of peppers and onions. I'm on record as not being a fan of green peppers, but I'm also on record as someone who vehemently disapproves of special orders, so I ate it "as is" with the thought that I could pick a few extra peppers off if they were too strong. But these were not overwhelming or pervasive, and the sandwich did not skimp on the meat; so the usually-offending item actually was perfectly portioned to enhance my meal.
Now, I know that there are some zealous purists who adamantly claim that serving the sandwich "wit Wiz" (with Cheez Wiz, that is) is a sign of authenticity, and there is no Wiz to be seen here. But mild white cheeses are also a favorite for cheesesteaks, and Fat Philly's melts Swiss into their beef-onion-pepper mix. So many aspects of this iconic sandwich are subject to debate — the roll, whether the meat is chopped or sliced, the type of cheese — that virtually everyone has his or her own opinion.
Suffice it to say that I have eaten and enjoyed many versions, regardless of which side of any argument the ingredients may fall on, and Fat Philly's sandwich is excellent. And taste is, of course, the primary concern. This was so good that while I'd had every intention of saving half of it for breakfast the next day, I couldn't resist finishing it. It's definitely large enough to split, so that it falls within our Frugal Floozie Friday budget of $5 or less per person.
Mary Bilyeu | Contributor
Other items which qualify for our frugal budget are the fries basket at $3.89, as well as side dishes of cole slaw or BBQ baked beans or chili or soup for $2.89. The House Salad and the House Caesar Salad cost only $4.89. And the hot dog, chili dog, and chili cheese dog all qualify for our mission, as well. You can eat at Fat Philly's or get a carry-out order, and calling ahead is welcomed.
So for great comfort food, hearty servings, and exceptionally friendly service, head over to Fat Philly's and welcome them to the neighborhood!
Fat Philly's & Burgers
2224 Washtenaw Ave.
Ypsilanti Township, MI 48197
Monday - Saturday: 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Sunday: noon - 9 p.m.
Mary Bilyeu writes for AnnArbor.com on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, telling about her adventures in the kitchen - making dinner, celebrating holidays, entering cooking contests, meeting new friends ... whatever strikes her fancy. She is also on a mission to find great deals for her Frugal Floozie Friday posts, seeking fabulous food at restaurants on the limited budget of only $5 per person. Feel free to email her with questions, comments, or suggestions: email@example.com.
Go visit Mary's blog — Food Floozie — where she enthuses and effuses over all things food-related; and look for her monthly articles in the Washtenaw Jewish News. "Like" her on Facebook, or send a tweet on Twitter, too.
The phrase "You Should Only Be Happy" (written in Hebrew on the stone pictured in this post) comes from Deuteronomy 16:15 and is a wish for all her readers - when you come to visit here, may you always be happy.