Guy Crowns the Cheesesteak Queen

by in Events, August 1st, 2011

winning cheesesteak
It takes more than a monsoon to keep Guy Fieri from presiding over a selection of the best cheesesteaks Atlantic City could pack into the Dennis Courtyard at Bally’s Hotel & Casino last Friday night. Fans of the cheesy sub and the star of the new show Rachael vs. Guy started rolling in, despite muggy temps and sudden storms, and lined up nonstop to sample some classic and fresh takes on cheesesteaks.

Recent contestants on Food Network Star –Mary Beth, Chris, Alicia, Jeff, Susie and Whitney — were also in attendance and in full fan-mode, greeting and taking pictures with fans. Mary Beth had her eye on last year’s cheesesteak winner, Tony Boloney’s, who brought back their gooey American cheese-filled spicy sando and posed a steamy threat to the other eight competitors. With their signature “mustache army” of blue-shirted, beret-wearing staffers, complete with blue and red vuvuzelas (remember those from the World Cup?) and bullhorns, you’d be hard-pressed to not notice — and stand in line for their messy yet tasty sandwich.

egg roll cheesesteak
A couple of notably novel takes also threatened to steal the show: Chef Tim Hamill of the Continental in Atlantic City took third place, adding an Asian flare with his cheesesteak eggroll with Sriracha ketchup (pictured above), and Margot Eisbart of burger shop PYT in Philly served up mini burgers topped with cheesesteak (“wit wiz”) on a pretzel roll from the famous Philly Pretzel Factory.

cheesesteak
Not to be outdone by spicy sauce, showboating and bullhorns, Michelle Burns of Bradley Boys in Stone Harbor, N.J., took second place for her classic cheesesteak. With her four sons and her guiding principle of “keep it simple,” Michelle’s cheesesteak was a perfect blend of American cheese, fresh beef and grilled onions.

Final honors, presented by Guy and seriously taste-tested by his crew on stage, wrested the prized Cheesesteak Battle trophy from Tony Boloney’s and placed it firmly in the Cheez Wiz-friendly hands (and first female Philly cheesesteak war entrant) of Nicole DiZio of Wit or Witout of Brookhaven, Penn. Crowned the Queen of Cheesesteaks in Philly, Nicole can also now claim the distinct honor of being the first Philly winner of the annual Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival Cheesesteak Battle (winning cheesesteak pictured at the top).

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Comments (30)

  1. FRANK BAYAK says:

    PYT SHOULD HAVE BEEN CONSIDERED

  2. JS says:

    Sorry…….Tony Lukes has the BEST cheesesteak ever! And the event sounds sad! I think someone needs to check in with their guilty greed and refund some ticket money! Shame on Food Network, AND Guy for letting this happen!

  3. Jeff Zamboni says:

    I guess you never tried the cheesesteaks at Zamboni's Diner in Washingtonville PA because I am sure that they are better than any I have ever tasted.

  4. Jen says:

    I with it is Wit or witout for onions.

  5. cliff says:

    This was the worst event I ever attended and as a loyal food network fan I am seriously disappointed.

    With a name like "Guy Fieri's Cheesesteak Battle", I assumed 2 things: (1) It would be a "battle" like iron chef or chopped and (2) Guy Fieri would actually be there…like a host or MC. Neither of which were true.

    Event was outside in 90 degree heat, it was muggy and started raining. You had to wait in overcrowded lines for cheesesteak samples and walk through grass which turned to mud. My wife and her heals didn't appreciate this at all.

    We paid $80 a ticket because we thought we were going to a 3 hr event/show, INDOORS, with FOOD NETWORK QUALITY CHEFS…NOPE. Cheesesteaks were from sub-par establishments and chain restaurants. Lee's Hoagies had the best steak and it was a 6 on a scale of 1-10 for anyone who has ever been to philly.

    We left after an hour and a half so maybe Guy eventually showed his face. I don't really care, it was an awful event that took advantage of Guy's fans by attaching his name to it. I had come to expect more from the Food Network brand.

    Attended the Grand Market the next day…just as bad but with air conditioning. Waiting in a 5 minute line to sample salsa or potato chips is not my idea of a food network event. I feel TOTALLY scammed out of my money.

    • bradleysbest says:

      your an idiot, bradley's steak was nothing short of good

      • Tifo says:

        Bradley you are probably on Food Networks payroll.

        • cliff says:

          your username is "bradleysbest" and you call me an idiot because you think bradley's steak was "good"???? Sorry, but I'm going to assume you are biased and ignore your silly comment.

          And I don't care if bradleys was the best thing I ever tasted. My post is mainly about spending close to $200 PLUS getting a room for a night so I could see a Guy Fieri show….that GUY FIERI DIDNT SHOW UP AT!!! Guy is the Axel Rose of cooking.

  6. Debbi Cook says:

    sad event.. to say the least.. if they are going to judge a PHILADELPHIA tradition the start with having it in PHILADELPHIA… and use the best of Philly shops to do the judging on… None of these places can hold a candle to Pudges in Norristown PA .. Guy if you really want to check out a GREAT sandwich shop try PUDGES in NORRISTOWN PA!

  7. Ginger says:

    Was Jim's Steaks from South Street a contestant? My husband and I have tried quite a few places in Philly and we by far find Jim's the best. We always tell anyone going to Philly to stop by Jim's for a great Cheesesteak Sandwich.

  8. allie says:

    Leo's Steaks in Sharon Hill shoulda been represented! THEY ARE THE BEST!

  9. Yum, wish I could have tried them all!

  10. steve says:

    Did anyone have philly cheesesteak factory's cheesesteak. If this was a professionally judge contest this would not have been a contest. Their hot n spicy was awesome and above the rest. Will be well worth the trip to matawan nj for a visit.

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