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Video: The French Dip, A Classic L.A. Sandwich Rivalry
The French Dip is indisputably counted as belonging to the great American pantheon of sandwiches, and its creation story is centered in Los Angeles. But like so many delicious pieces of history, there's a bit of friendly rivalry embedded in the French Dip's backstory.
Two historic L.A. restaurants, Cole's and Philippe's, both claim to have invented the French Dip. Cole's, L.A.'s oldest public house, located on the ground floor of the Pacific Electric Building opened in 1908. They say that their chef dipped the bread in au jus to accommodate a customer with bad gums. Then there's Philippe's, which was established in 1908 by Philippe Mathieu, who is said to have "accidentally" invented the French Dip in 1918 when he "inadvertently dropped the sliced french roll into the roasting pan filled with juice still hot from the oven."
A new video takes a look at this very Los Angeles rivalry about a very Los Angeles food item. The real story may never determine if Cole's or Phillipe's came first, but many Angelenos choose sides and stay loyal to their favorite French Dip.