Philippe the Original

Cafeteria | Sandwich Shop
One of the best

Philippe’s (pronounced Phil-ee-peez) claims to have invented the French dip sandwich over a hundred years ago. The story is that a carver accidentally dropped a sliced roll in beef gravy and the customer was in too much of a hurry to wait for another roll to be cut and more beef to be sliced. So he took the sandwich “wet.” Today Philippe’s makes French dips from beef, pork, lamb, ham, or turkey. Beef is the classic, available single-dipped or, for serious juice-lovers, double-dipped.

The French dip sandwiches are delicious as delivered at the counter, but connoisseurs know to slather them with Philippe’s roaring-hot mustard. The menu also lists such stalwart lunch room fare as chili and stew and a hearty soup every day; and you can still come to this old joint to eat pickled spiced eggs, which are hard boiled and displayed at the carving counter in big glass jars.

Philippe’s is worth visiting just for its people-watching opportunities. While it does attract its share of culinary tourists, the it also hosts a cast of only-in-Los-Angeles characters. Not the beautiful people who flock to the hot restaurant of the moment, the regular cadre of customers includes municipal employees from the nearby post office and court house as well as Santa Anita touts with racing forms in hand (or on their cell phones).

What to Eat
Philippe the Original, French Dip Sandwich
French Dip Sandwich
A trayful at Philippe's: double-dipped French dip, a pickled egg, a baked apple, and a cup of coffee.
Philippe the Original, Lamb (Double) Dip Sandwich
Lamb (Double) Dip Sandwich
A double-dipped lamb sandwich with just enough of Philippe's good mustard to complement.
Philippe the Original, Bumbleberry Pie
Bumbleberry Pie
Bumbleberry pie is packed with sweet fruit.
Philippe the Original, Pickled Egg
Pickled Egg
Pickled eggs have been a staple at Philippe's for decades and you know something: they're good! Sweet and sour pickly, and a nice companion for a sandwich.
Philippe the Original, Baked Apple
Baked Apple
Baked apples are available at Philippes only during apple season, from October through June. Not that this big hunk of sweetness has any fresh crispness left. It is soft and sugary, lolling in a pool of syrup.
Philippe the Original, Coffee
Philippe's vintage tray holds a cup of coffee. Current price: 45 cents.
Directions and Hours
closed now
Sunday7am - 9pm
Monday7am - 9pm
Tuesday7am - 9pm
Wednesday7am - 9pm
Thursday7am - 9pm
Friday7am - 9pm
Saturday7am - 9pm
Open Year Round
Meals Served
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Credit Cards Accepted
Alcohol Served
Outdoor Seating

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