Tuesday, May 29, 2012

French Fry Diary 377: Outta Philly

I had been aware of this place for quite some time, but finally, with the family, this past Memorial Day weekend, I got a chance to go to Outta Philly, on White Horse Road in Voorhees, NJ. There's no reason to sugarcoat it, folks, but I was blown away. This is where you should be eating, and not just for the fries.

We were greeted at the counter by one of the owners, Dean, who runs the place with Rob. Dean is a very entertaining host and he immediately and playfully got on my mother-in-law's case for being from Philadelphia but not knowing how to properly order a cheesesteak. For the uninformed, and those who have never been to South Philly's Pat's or Geno's, there is even signage at Outta Philly to help you along.

I loved Dean's attitude and banter from the moment we walked in. We were made to feel relaxed and at home, not just customers, but neighbors, friends, family. This is all a part of the atmosphere of the restaurant. The walls were decorated with various examples of Phillyspeak, with meanings and pronunciations. Besides a TV with the Phillies game on, there were also large logos of the Philadelphia sports teams, announcing proper allegiance to the Phillies, the 'Iggles,' the 76ers, the Flyers, even the Union. We confronted Dean on why no Wings logo, and found he's actually a big lacrosse fan, so I'm guessing he's working on that one.

They had a fair selection of fountain drinks, and add it yourself ice chest, a personal retro touch I liked. There was also a full selection of Herr's potato chips, keeping in the Philly vein, for folks who didn't want fries or rings as a side. Our food was brought out to us, after we watched it made. Fries and rings were not dropped until we ordered, and we were informed they were made from scratch. We watched them cut the meat in front of us. When I say from scratch, and made in front of us, I mean it.

I got a Wiz Wit (refer to the sign). For folks outside the Philadelphia area, that's a cheesesteak with Cheez Whiz - the good orange stuff - and onions. It's Phillyspeak, and how you order if you were at Pat's or Geno's. Now let me be clear here, and it might be blasphemy. I haven't been to either of those places in about two decades, I know, a trip is long overdue, but this Wiz Wit was the best cheesesteak I have had in years, maybe decades, maybe ever. It even beats Jim's on South Street, and local Cherry Hill fave Big John's. Yeah, it was that good. I loved it. The cheese was very hot, and the onions were very big, the shaved rib-eye steak, and roll were perfect. Regular readers know how hard I am to please, so take this as the truth.

The French fries are natural cuts, and as I said, not dropped until they were ordered. They were hot, crisp, just right, and easily rival those of Five Guys and Cool Dog locally. They are also available with old bay seasoning and white cheddar cheese (Outta Fries), with jalapeƱo and onions (South Street Fries), with homemade chili with cheese (Chili Fries) and with Whiz, bacon and sour cream (Loaded Fries). Great stuff!

Taking to co-owner Dean afterward, I know that he knows his fries. He has it down, and rattled off the secrets to making the perfect fresh cut fries like he knew it like the back of his hand, and he does. Dean has a background that includes many other restaurants, including Ruth's Chris Steak House, put simply, the man knows what he's doing.

The onion rings were big thick rings, possibly Vidalia, but I'm not sure. The coating was perfect, and not greasy at all. Much like the cheesesteak, these were the best juiciest onion rings I have had in quite some time. The mom-in-law loved the remoulade sauce that came with them.

The entire visit was an absolute treat. I loved Outta Philly and will definitely go back. They also have hoagies, sandwiches, salads, lots of other great stuff I didn't get to sample on this visit. They are a little off the beaten track but sooo worth the trip. Definitely check out Outta Philly! Fully and highly recommended.


Unknown said...

This is a definite must try and it's just around the corner from my neighborhood. Thanks for the rec, Glenn!

Unknown said...

Don't forget to mention French Fry Diary sent you, and enjoy!