Lawrence natives gives England a taste of Philly

JP Teti opens American dive bar in London

– Scott Morgan

J.P. Teti wanted a cheesesteak and couldn’t find one, so he made one.

Not impressed? Well, what if you knew that when Teti says he made a cheesesteak, he means he didn’t just go to the store and buy stuff to put a sandwich together? He made all of it from scratch. The sauce, the roll—short of raising his own beef, though not too far short— he built a near-perfect replica of a Philly cheesesteak in a place where no one even really knew the concept. And he did it at his own food truck, Liberty Cheesesteak. It was so successful, he turned it into a restaurant called Passayunk Avenue.

That’s not to say he didn’t have some help. There was an adventurous baker, an old friend with trunk space for vast amounts of cheese sauce jars, and that one shifty guy from Holland. But the compulsion to bring a hefty hunk of Philadelphia cuisine to London, England, was all Teti. As was the plan to open a Philly-themed restaurant across the pond.

Let’s answer the obvious question first: Why would a guy from Lawrence start a cheesesteak business in England? For starters, a restaurant based partly around cheese is not exactly unheard of in London. Although, to be fair, Teti’s cheesiness involves actual cheese, while that of other American-themed restaurants in the city revolves around campy pastiche kind of cheese. American-themed restaurants in England, Teti says, tend to look like something out of “Happy Days.”

(Community News, 2018, United Kingdom, <>)