Philly Meets London: Bonding Over Cheesesteaks

After learning all about British culture for the last three months, we decided to teach our professor a thing or two about Philadelphian culture. What does Philadelphian culture include, you ask? Well, cheesesteaks mainly.

London is home to a Philly-themed restaurant and bar called Passyunk Ave, named after the familiar “foodie” street in South Philadelphia. Passyunk Ave was opened by JP Teti, shockingly, a New Jersey native. While studying abroad in England, Teti missed the ability to eat a good old cheesesteak from Philly. Just like that, he decided to bring the Cheesesteak to London. Passyunk Ave is known for it’s authentic cheesesteaks and buffalo wings, while also serving a variety of other American food.

Despite being thousands of miles away, walking into Passyunk Ave brought us right back to Philly. Even I, being from New England and a Boston sports fan, could not help but feel at home in this restaurant. The walls and ceilings are covered in Philadelphia paraphernalia, including Philly sport team jerseys and university banners. With one TV always airing reruns of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, the others play old Philadelphia sports games. The Eagle green walls going down the staircase lead to an entire bar dedicated solely to Nick Foles, otherwise known as the “Nick Foles Shrine.”

In all of it’s glory, there was one downfall of the Philly-themed restaurant, Passyunk Ave. The many Philadelphia university banners included all except one very important school, Drexel University. Luckily, I had an extra banner back in America which my Mom kindly brought over to London with her. Passyunk Ave hung up the Drexel University banner with enthusiasm, and we are honored to be the first Drexel students to contribute to the collection.

Thanks to Passyunk Ave, we were able to bring our professor to this restaurant and introduce him to some Philly culture. It’s extremely interesting to watch the London and Philadelphia cultures combine, two cultures that have been very significant over the last few months. Similarly to our professor, even my first cheesesteak experience was at London Passyunk Ave. Thanks to this little restaurant, we were able to appreciate some of Philadelphia whilst spending so much time apart from it.

It’s amazing how much the study abroad experience can open your eyes to phenomenons right in front of you! From London to Philadelphia, the authentic cheesesteak is not a delicacy that any country should have to miss out on.

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