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Before taking my first steps to the one of the old restaurants of Los Angeles, I cannot stop whining, bickering and preparing my long speech about why the hell we drove at least one hour and stuck in the bloody traffic of LA, getting nearly deaf from blasting horns and using our middle fingers way too much to salute those people in their cars who were about to faint out because of heat and extra claustrophobia! Is this just for a sandwich? I can fix a sandwich at home! Yes, it would be terrible and you need your stomach pumped for several times after eating it but at least we would have skipped traffic water-boarding!

Well, here we go, we are on the edge of Chinatown and we finally parked our car and dashed down the road to reach the place because we already passed our lunch time and my stomach was already playing ear bleeding symphony and we finally took our first steps and WHAT A MINUTE !!!!
There is flour on the floor. (So poetic!) This place reminded me my own kitchen when I tried to cook a surprise birthday cake for myself (If I were able to cook it, I would be really surprised myself!) but I dropped the flour, eggs down the floor and I sang them “get on the floor” but JLo magic didn’t work with my wasted ingredients! But then I realized this is not flour! These are wood shavings! Okay don’t call me “stupid” with your singsong ugly voice!
Wow there are wall-mounted displays about history of railroading, look at those beautiful pictures make you take a train tour and find the twelve murderers during your trip. Yes, trains always remind me of the most intelligent Belgian detective character that the one and only Agatha Christie had created! And let’s forget to take a look at those pictures dedicated to the circuses.
Of course you may take your silly, nonsense selfies with the historical phone booths to pump up your social media likes.

This is delicatessen type sit down, share the long tables with friendly strangers should fit with your expectations! For privacy, you need to walk throughout the restrooms direction to find secluded booths. But just sit your ass and devour your meals kind of design make you feel like home.
It’s genuine, it’s cozy, its’ relaxingly casual and the best thing about this place is display of class equality because the people from different backgrounds and financial status come here, share the stools, tables and let themselves the amaze of melting meat’s taste in their mouth!

But please be patient to wait on the line and stop biting your nails with frustration. It will only make you lose your appetite! And after nearly thirty minutes when you’re starving and biting your husband’s meaty arm, you realize you have to order. After a few gibberish sounds later (because I wanted to eat everything on the menu. I’m a crazy meat person and I’m so sure if Joaquin Phoenix knows my existence, he’ll call me as persona non grata!) I successfully ordered: ‘DOUBLE DIP LAMB SANDWICH WITH CHEDDAR CHEESE (Highly recommended) and of course LEMONADE! (You should wash your special dipped French roll down with this cold, delicious drink!)
The founder Philippe Mathieu emigrated from France to the USA on 1901 and two years later he moved Los Angeles from NY, Buffalo. First he opened a deli and on 1908 he opened the Philippe restaurant at 300 N. Alameda Street. Their menu is consisted of roast beef, roast pork, roast lamb, liver pâté and blood sausage. The idea of bringing French rolls and dipping them into gravy is amazing combination of both American and French cuisines unique tastes.

There are still rumors about dip’s origin out there. Some people say an angry client complained that his sandwich was so dry so they dipped into the pan’s gravy. Another rumor says some of the clients saw the gravy in the bottom of the pan and wanted to taste it at his sandwich and a few customers copied his order style so it became a tradition to cook gallons of gravy and add into this sandwich.

My personal choice is DOUBLE DIP SANDWICHES (one dip is never enough and third is too wet for your own good!) with your choice of your meat. Coleslaw is okay but potato salad is my favorite (I stole my husband’s salad when he got an urgent phone call and left the table only for five minutes!) and don’t forget to drink your lemonade.
In addition to the French dip sandwiches they also have other old-fashioned foods are served, including freshly made soups, beef stew, chili, baked apples, and pickled pigs’ feet. And after the retirement of Bill Binder on 1985, they also add some healthier food like salads, Turkey sandwiches of the menu, which I probably say a big and bold “no” to them!
Overall: Go, visit some of the landmarks of LA history, spend some quality time, devour your meal and because those sandwiches are ONE OF THE SIGNATURE DISHES of Angelinos! So you don’t want to miss it, do you?

Best eats of LA! | Nilufer Ozmekik