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DanielK

Tony Luke's, Tony "Luke" Lucidonio Jr.'s Legendary Cheesesteaks Now a Global Brand (Even in Bahrain!)

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- Tony Lukes. Yep, along with Pats two to avoid if you know the cheesesteak and roast pork sandwich scene in PHL at all. But, at Citizens, this is a major attraction and it is local. Got the roast pork. Thin slices but with good moisture, noticeably sharp provolone, equally penetrating rabe and a fairly soaked roll best to toss in favor of the fillings.

Not sure what you mean by "avoid" for Tony Luke's. Yes, Pat's, Jim's, and Geno's are more for tourists than Philadelphians, but Tony Luke's has won best cheesesteak from Philly mag in the past, and is consistently one of the top 3 for roast pork sandwiches. I can't speak for the ballpark operation, but I find it hard to drive to Philly and not stop on the way in/out of town at the Oregon Ave stand.

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Not sure what you mean by "avoid" for Tony Luke's. Yes, Pat's, Jim's, and Geno's are more for tourists than Philadelphians, but Tony Luke's has won best cheesesteak from Philly mag in the past, and is consistently one of the top 3 for roast pork sandwiches. I can't speak for the ballpark operation, but I find it hard to drive to Philly and not stop on the way in/out of town at the Oregon Ave stand.

Fair enough.  I hadn't been to TL in maybe 10 years but had many times before then.  Always thought it kind of middle of the pack so maybe better than your touristy spots but not to the level of spots like Paesano's or John's Roast Pork.  All said, the version on offer at Citizen's was quite respectable by ballpark standards.  One thing certain is that Tony Luke's is the most aggressive cheesesteak marketer. Would not be at all surprised to learn they have professional PR behind them.  Have you ever tried Paesano's, Daniel?  In a bit sketchier 'hood but I'd be curious to know what you think if you have or do in the future.

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Fair enough. I hadn't been to TL in maybe 10 years but had many times before then. Always thought it kind of middle of the pack so maybe better than your touristy spots but not to the level of spots like Paesano's or John's Roast Pork. All said, the version on offer at Citizen's was quite respectable by ballpark standards. One thing certain is that Tony Luke's is the most aggressive cheesesteak marketer. Would not be at all surprised to learn they have professional PR behind them. Have you ever tried Paesano's, Daniel? In a bit sketchier 'hood but I'd be curious to know what you think if you have or do in the future.

I don't think I've been to Paesano's. But I think the Roast Pork Italian at TL's is better the one at John's, because I prefer broccoli rabe to spinach, and John's only has spinach.

Also note - Tony Luke's won this year's cheesesteak poll: http://www.phillymag.com/philly/best-of/cheesesteak-readers-choice/

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Tony Luke's has actually opened an outpost in Temple University's brand new Morgan Hall dormitory.  Reports from my daughter who lives in the dorm are that the lines have been CRAZY long since the moment they opened!  

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Getting into Philly about 8P, and it seems like the only name roast pork place open is Tony Luke's. As far as other faster options, Nan Zhou looks good. Anyone have any ideas of where I could go that's very good and I can finish eating in 30-45 min?

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Law360 (July 24, 2020, 8:55 PM EDT) -- Two of the owners of the landmark Philadelphia cheesesteak spot Tony Luke's have been charged with carrying out an $8 million tax dodging scheme that involved false reports to government authorities and under-the-table payments to employees, federal prosecutors announced Friday.

The U.S. attorney's office in Philadelphia unveiled tax evasion charges on Friday against 82-year-old Anthony Lucidonio Sr. and his 54-year-old son Nicholas Lucidonio, two of the owners of The Original Tony Luke's sandwich shop.

The pair were accused of hiding more than $8 million in revenues from the IRS between 2006 and 2016 by misreporting their business income and expenses, in addition to paying employees "off the books."

"On payday, defendants caused to be handed out paychecks that reflected a portion of the employees' hourly wages with the required taxes withheld," prosecutors said. "However, the wages defendants paid and reported in this fashion represented but a fraction of the true hours the employees worked, and but a fraction of the total wages that the defendants paid them."

Prosecutors also said the Lucidonios would ask employees to endorse their paychecks over to the business, and then pay them with cash-stuffed envelopes.

Moreover, they said the sandwich shop proprietors filed bogus information with the IRS, which became a source of concern when disagreements over franchising and royalties sparked tensions in the business relationship with the third owner of the restaurant.

Prosecutors said Anthony and Nicholas Lucidonio grew worried in 2016 that the discord could cause the exposure of their tax scheme, and tried to cover it up by filing amended returns for some recent tax years.

"However, at the same time, defendants caused to be fraudulently claimed and characterized substantial additional, but false and fictitious, cost of goods sold expenses to continue their tax fraud scheme," prosecutors said.

U.S. Attorney William McSwain said in a statement Friday that the alleged tax evasion bilked taxpayers by hiding taxable income from the IRS and also by avoiding payroll taxes.

"These are serious allegations and it should go without saying that everyone has an obligation to follow the law," McSwain said.

Attorneys from Weir & Partners LLP and Fox Rothschild LLP, which are representing the Lucidonios, said in a statement that the father and son dispute the charges and plan to fight them.

"Tony and Nicky have fully cooperated with the government's investigation since its outset," the attorneys said. "The Original Tony Luke's will continue to serve its faithful clientele and provide gainful employment to its employees and their families."

Anthony Lucidonio Jr., the son and brother of the restaurant proprietors accused of tax dodging, took pains on Friday to distance himself and his unaffiliated restaurant chain, Tony Luke's, from the imbroglio surrounding his family members.

"That is not Me!!!!!" he wrote in a Friday post on Twitter, commenting on a local news report that misidentified him as the indicted owner of The Original Tony Luke's.

The government is represented by Paul L. Gray of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

Anthony Lucidonio is represented by Walter Weir Jr. of Weir & Partners LLP.

Nicholas Lucidonio is represented by Ian M. Comisky of Fox Rothschild LLP.

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