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New specialty Philly cheesesteak restaurant opens in Astoria

Inside Chiddy’s Astoria Location (Photo: QueensPost)

Mar. 7, 2024 By Staff Report

A New York chain specializing in Philly cheesesteaks has opened its doors on 31st Avenue. 

Chiddy’s Cheese Steaks, which was started by founded Mike Chidester as a food truck in Long Island in 2014, opened its doors at 37-03 31st Ave. in February at a location previously occupied by Sabor de Cuba, which closed last year. 

Matt Geisperger, the franchisee behind the Astoria expansion, said he plans to hold a grand opening party later in the month to coincide with National Cheesesteak Day on March 24. The grand opening also coincides with the opening game of the season for the New York Mets, who Chiddy’s partnered with during the 2023 season. 

Boasting a rock and roll interior and a counter paying homage to Chiddy’s humble food truck beginnings, the new Astoria location serves a variety of cheesesteaks, ranging from the “Chiddy’s Signature”, featuring steak, onions, peppers, mushrooms, provolone cheese, and Cheese Whiz, to the “Pizza Steak”, featuring steak, mozzarella sticks, pepperoni, and marinara sauce all served in garlic bread. 

It also offers customers a “Build Your Own Cheesesteak” option and serves a variety of empanadas, quesadillas, tacos, and side dishes, including “Cheesesteak Fries” and “Disco Fries” (fries topped with steak, gravy, and mozzarella). 

Cheesesteaks at the restaurant cost between $15 and $18 for a 10-inch sandwich, with “Junior” seven-inch sandwiches available for $13. Chiddy’s additionally carries a range of vegan menu items. 

The new location is tastefully decorated with rock and roll posters and other memorabilia and can seat 24 people at full capacity. 

Photo: QueensPost

Geisperger has been a franchisee with Chiddy’s for a number of years and had been running a delivery service out of Skillman Avenue for the last 18 months while he searched for a location to open a brick-and-mortar store.

He said he was keen to open an Astoria location as he grew up on Ditmars Boulevard and said the local community has been “awesome” since Chiddy’s opened its doors last month. 

“Lots of locals have been coming in and thanking us for being here,” Geisperger said. “It’s a different environment to traditional restaurants and traditional franchises.

“It’s more upbeat, more vibrant.  We have rock and roll posters all over the place. We have music playing all day long. We have a vibrant staff here. And we have a mock food truck too.” 

Geisperger said he was blown away when he first visited Chiddy’s in Farmingdale a number of years ago and said he was immediately interested in coming on board as a franchisee. 

He said Chiddy’s is unlike other restaurants offering Philly cheesesteaks in New York as it uses proprietary cuts of meat from Philadelphia and bread from the same New Jersey location that a number of Philadelphia restaurants use. 

Geisperger owns franchising rights for all of Queens and said he plans to open more locations in the borough in the near future. 

He is already involved in operating a stand at CitiField, where Chiddy’s serve their “tried and true” CitiFielder sandwich, consisting of steak, onions, and Cheese Whiz. 

Photo: QueensPost

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