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Philippe the Original

1001 North Alameda Street, Los Angeles, CA, 90012
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  • 98%
    Foodies
  • 97%
    Local Culture
  • 67%
    Family Travelers
  • 67%
    Adventure Travelers
  • 65%
    Budget Travelers
  • 59%
    Trendsters
  • 58%
    Students
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Member Reviews (29)Write a review

Local Culture
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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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    Established in 1908, Philippe's is a Los Angeles landmark. Its founder claimed to have created the French dip sandwich - a claim perpetuated by Philippe's through its use of the words "The Original" in conjunction with its name. There is no table service. Customers stand in long but fast moving lines to place and receive their orders. They then take their food trays to whatever table is vacant (usually there is space on the second floor). The food is good and the prices reasonable. The price of coffee was recently raised from 9 cents to 25 cents.

    Recommended for:Family TravelersFoodiesLocal CultureStudents
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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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    OMG my review for this place disappeared somehow. I LOVE THIS JOINT! but hey what do you expect from a Triple D destination!

    This is my favorite grub spot within 5 miles of Grand Central Station. Also better known as Downtown LA!

    The king of dips IMHO. Its gotten a bit more expensive over the years but the grub here is awesome. I always end up with the roast beef au jus I get extra au jus on the side and a couple of gerkin pickles. I love to drink the mini draft beer or have some of the fresh squeezed lemonade.

    They have several meats available here. For example my grandfathers favorite is the lamb dip. I started coming here with my grandfather in the early 80s after USC games that I would go to with him. It was a great experience and even lasted into the 2000s before my grandfather had to stop attending games. Consequently not only is it awesome food, but it holds a super special place in my heart.

    Ohhhhh we cant forget the rolls can we. They are beyond awesome as well. So soft and tasty on the inside and so absolutely perfectly crusty outside. After being double dipped or single dipped into the au jus, it softens and makes the rolls so much more tasty!

    ...now i am pissed at myself since its 10:45 and I am craving this chit... grrrrr... ohhh well sometime soon I will go get some more. Their grub is just soooo tasty that I love it and then some.

    Pro Tip: Do not park in the parking lot adjacent to the restaurant, park across the street in the second lot

    Pro Tip #2: share a bench with a few strangers and make a couple of new friends to broaden the experience and enjoy some new company!

    Pro Tip #3: There is an ATM on site but it is CASH ONLY!!!

    Pro Tip #4: Check all the lines from the stairs to see which is the shortest... Anticipate waiting a bit to order your food while standing in line.

    Recommended for:Adventure TravelersFoodiesLocal CultureTrendsters
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  • Philippe the Original
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    Got an appetite, some cash, and waiting for the Dodgers game to start? Well I have just the place for you!

    Order two beef dips, cole slaw, a dill pickle, two iced teas, and an apple pie with vanilla ice cream. Or whatever you'd like, but for sure the beef dips, since they're known for that here.

    Like Apple Pan, walking in here is like a transportation back in time. Maybe the lemonade vendor changed. Maybe the iced tea vendor changed. But the way they make their food? Not changed. Delicious. Homey. Comfort. Everything you want in a filling lunch - even though it costs more than it used to back in the day ;)

    Remember, cash only, and make sure you know what you want before you get in line to order. They are an establishment that does NOT like to be kept waiting!

    Recommended for:Budget TravelersFamily TravelersFoodiesLocal Culture
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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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    I love Philippe's! I/we always find a way to squeeze in a Philippe visit when we're in LA. Too bad I didn't know about them when I lived here. I prefer the turkey dip, have tried beef and pork too. Breakfast is excellent, but they strictly enforce the breakfast cut-off. Buy a jar of mustard to bring home. When I run low, that's how I know it's time to make another pilgrimage.

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  • Philippe the Original
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    I unfortunately did not discover Philippe's until I was about 20 years old, but it was life changing! The sandwiches here are DELICIOUS. The original home of the French Dip, they are so simple -- just crusty bread, au jus and delicious meat. They also have a ridiculously spicy mustard (I stay away from this, but people who like spicy love it) to go with the sandwiches if you like.

    The ambiance is total dive. First of all, it's basically in a large basement. You walk down the steps, order at the counter, walk through the sawdust-covered floor and find a seat at one of the many long picnic bench-like tables. Then you enjoy your sandwich when it's ready and contemplate a second sandwich because it was so delicious :)

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  • Philippe the Original
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    Near to Union Station, Philippe serves the best French dip sandwiches the world has ever known. I did not even know I liked French dip sandwiches, prior to visiting Phillippe, but I was hooked from the first bite. The sawdust on the floor and communal tables emphasize the fact that Philippe welcomes diners from all walks of life and the eclectic throng of people one is likely to find here at lunchtime, further testifies to that fact. Philippe is one of the truly great Los Angeles institutions. Not to be missed.

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  • Philippe the Original
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    #BeStuffed

    There's nothing more frustrating than having visitors who want to be 'shown the sites' around town. What sites? This is LA, not Paris. And the most 'LA' restaurants, generally speaking, will put you out in the amount of a mortgage payment in your visitor's hometown.

    Ignore their touristy whines of 'but I want to see stars!' and take them to an unassuming LA gem, Philippe the Original. For $5, they can experience an LA landmark - established in 1908 - and the most delicious French dipped sandwich from the dish's actual place of origin. In one fell swoop you'll have provided your out-of-towner with culture, culinary history, and a meal worth five paparazzi-less stars.

    BrokeGirlsGuide.com

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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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    They claim to have invented the French Dip sandwich and they have been in business since 1908. This place still serves a cheap cup of coffee! They have roast beef, roast lamb, and roast pork. They also serve picked pigs feet. But go for the dip sandwiches and reminisce in nostalgia. Fun fact: they also have a scale that was used in one of Norman Rockwell's paintings for the Saturday Evening Post.

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  • Philippe the Original
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    Old school cafe style eatery featuring their signature dipped sandwiches - the sides are excellent as well. Check out the mini train exhibit in one of their dining rooms. Parking is surprisingly easy with their own lot in the back.

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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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  • Philippe the Original
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    I've heard so many good things about this place and their French Dip sandwiches. I've seen them featured in TV a couple of times. I was very excited to finally try it. I got their beef dip sandwich and it was just okay. It tasted like an ordinary beef dip sandwich. I didn't really taste anything special about it. I guess the big deal was just cuz they were the originators of the sandwich. The food was priced very cheaply compared to the rest of LA. I got their potato salad and it was good too. Also their tapioca was tasty. I drank an iced tea.

    Make sure to have cash cuz they don't take card! They do have an ATM machine there. I think it charged $2 or $2.50. I didn't realize they didn't take card till I got to the front of the line and I ordered my food, despite the large signs everywhere indicating that. The lady was nice and let me run over to the ATM to take out some cash. Lunch time there is not very good for vegetarians. They do have salads but that's pretty much it. My friend ordered a piece of bread with cheese.

    When I first arrived the place wasn't crowded at peak time it got very crowded. The lines do move fast though and there are plenty of lines. The seating is communal. There are lunch tables everywhere and you will sit with a bunch of strangers.

    Parking was easy enough. I found parking in 2 minutes but I think it can get hard during peak lunch time. They have 2 lots with free parking. If those are full there is also metered parking.

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  • Philippe the Original
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  • Philippe the Original

    Today I met a group of people for breakfast. This was a unique experience.

    You go to the counter, and order breakfast, drinks, etc. and the food is delivered quite quickly. Then you find a place to eat. There are a lot of tables (high and low), stools, etc. Breakfast Omelet, Hash Browns, toast/biscuit and Coffee for $8.72. Coffee refills are $0.49 / cup.

    Breakfast is quite good, but not fantastic.

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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014

    Old school diner best known for their french dipped sammies.

    As I walked into the restaurant I immediately felt like I've been transported back into the 1950s. The whole place had an old school 50s vibe from the waitress' uniforms to the old wooden telephone booths. Since I've heard so much about this place I decided to drop by after a work meeting in Chinatown to see for myself what all the rave was about.

    Unfortunately, after all the hype I have to admit that Philippe's did not meet my expectations. First off, I was quite upset that they did not accept credit card. They do have an ATM machine in the restaurant but the $2 transaction fee killed the mood. After getting my beef french dip sandwich, I noticed that they don't give you au jus on the side. I wasn't sure if this is extra but I love dipping my sammies in au jus and was quite disappointed. For the price of $7+tax, the sandwich just wasn't as filling as I had expected and if it wasn't for the spicy mustard sauce the sandwich would have tasted dry and bland. Perhaps if they knocked off a buck or two, I would then reconsider adding an additional star to their rating. Since I was still hungry I ordered a tapioca pudding ($2.67) for dessert and I still wasn't thoroughly impressed. Nothing really stood out to me. Since I heard from my coworker that the tuna melt is quite delicious here I guess I'll be trying that the next time around if I find myself dropping by again.

    Recommended for:Foodies
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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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    Adam Richman, you let me down bro :(

    Disgusting!

    I'm not referring to the food, mind you, I'm referring to hygiene.

    Lines were sorta long, but moved promptly enough. When it was my turn, I ordered 2 beef sandwiches, 1 double-dipped & the other wet. The worker proceeded to make my sandwiches sans gloves. Yup, that's right. NO gloves. After she finished making them, she took my money, brought it over to the cashier, received the correct change, handed it to me all sans gloves. Again, I repeat. NO gloves. How can this place pass county inspections when there's such a blatant violation right there?

    The food itself was good. The beef slices were very tasty & the sandwiches themselves were a tad smidgeon bigger than Arby's toasted subs. The mustard is awesome. It's yellow wasabi, as far as I'm concerned. The hell with Sudafed, a lil bit of Philippe's mustard will decongest my sinuses. Good, good stuff.

    The only reason why I ate the food was because A) I was hungry & B) I wanted to see what all the hubbub was about. Having done so, I don't see myself ever dining here again unless someone changes the food preparation.

    Un-NOM Un-NOM Un-NOM

    Recommended for:Foodies
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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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    Philippe you get 3.5 stars. There was quite a bit of hype about Philippe so I finally got sucked in. Despite the Travel Channel and Philippe great history, I didn't get the WOW I was hoping for. Respect for inventing the French Dip, but the original isn't always the best. Like the Apple One computer, it sucked and all the windows based PCs dominate still until present day. I'm ashamed to say.. Yardhouse has a better French Dip. You got beat by a chain Philippe.

    Don't get my wrong Philippe is good shieet it just didn't meet up to the hype. I came only to try the Beef and Pork sandwiches. After tasting my dry "double dip" style, I wanted more. Its only about 6 or 7 bucks per sandwich, but let's be realistic if you are Man Vs Food like me.. You will order at least 3 or 4 sandwiches. Raising the average price to about $18 to $24 for a grown man. Not to mention CASH ONLY! Damn you... built in 1908 today is 2010 please take plastic.

    I think the best way to experience Philippe is to try it all. You have to order pie, Cole slaw, chili, apple pie, and other endless sides. Also, order a variety of drinks because there are no refills. I saw some Philippe veterans ordering beer, ice tea, and lemonade. I feel like such a rookie, but my quest was for the sandwich so maybe next time I will try the bomb looking side dishes.

    I recommend Philippe to anyone that was curious. Its a great local snack. I love traditional old fashion restaurants. Sometimes you need a break from Chain restaurants. A customer on TV said, "I drove a hour for this.." You lie! I drove an hour, but it doesn't make it better. BTW the spicy mustard is bomb, but don't try it if you don't like horseradish. Try to go on a Sunday. It wasn't crowded when I went and it was easy to find parking. Close FREE parking is a miracle in LA, but a standard everywhere else.

    Recommended for:Business TravelersGreen TravelersFamily TravelersHistory Buffs
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  • Philippe the Original
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    Ehh...it's ok.

    I liked the tomato bisque soup of the day. The spicy mustard was really good. The double dipped beef dip was ok. I liked how the bread was soggy and easy to eat because I had a cankersore :(

    Anyways, came here once to try. Wouldn't necessarily come back again. It's not that great.

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  • Philippe the OriginalPro 2014
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    Great French dip sandwiches! The French bread is dipped in the au jus so the flavor is all in the bread already. You can request a single dip, double dip, or wet. Definitely try their spicy mustard on the sandwich too! The potato salad and mac salad are delish though the side portions are on the smaller side. There are numerous lines to order so just get in one and be prepared with your order when you get to the front.

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  • Philippe the Original

    Overated.

    After watching Man vs. Food LA, I wanted to try the infamous Philippe's ORIGINAL French dip sandwich. I was stoked when I came here for lunch because there was no line and I heard the line gets crazy in here. Waiting too long for food is sometimes rewarding but most of the time ANNOYING. I ordered a single dip Pork Dip with swiss cheese and a side of macaroni salad.

    I like having my french dip with the dip on the side because it keeps the bread crunchy. But since this is a traditional/ original French Dip place, I decided to get it the way they serve it. The bread was soggy as I expected and there was just not enough flavor overall. I probably would've liked it better if I got the dip on the side so I can control the amount of dip to put on the sandwich. The macaroni salad tasted really bad. It was watery and sweet... I didn't like it at all but I unfortunately gobbled it down because I was still hungry after eating one sandwich -_-;

    The whole restaurant is very old fashioned. The place looked like it has been kept the same since they opened, which was a 100 years ago. They serve everything on recycled paper plates.

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  • Philippe the Original
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    First to Review

    It is an established and well-liked institution in LA. You can get some cheap food here and they serve all the diner staples. Of course, they have the famous french dip here. Not my favorite french dip by a long shot. Also, the decor also looks like a reformed insane asylum. I'm not sure why there is so much hype about this place, but whatever it is, I haven't found it.

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OverviewEdit

4.0 out of 5
29 members' reviews
6,493 people visited Philippe the Original

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