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June 06, 2017

Guy Fieri isn't too cool to make fun of himself

The King of Flavortown hit the jackpot with new joint at Harrah's Chester

Guy Fieri Interviews
Carroll - Guy Fieri Restaurant Chester Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Guy Fieri, discussing his restaurant at Harrah's Casino in Chester, PA in 2017.

Ask Guy Fieri who his doppelgangers are, and he’ll look at you like you have two heads.

“Me?!” the hotrod-ridin’, frosted-tipped, “Triple-D” food fanatic and TV personality said.

Of course, he was joking.

PHOTO GALLERY: Guy's Philly Kitchen & Bar 

“It’s usually me, Sammy Hagar, Joey Fatone…”

And then, without prompting, the restaurateur remembered a meme of his picture alongside that of Smashmouth lead singer Steve Harwell and the blond Juggalo from the Insane Clown Posse (ICP) above the words: “THINK ABOUT IT, HAVE YOU EVER SEEN SMASH MOUTH, ICP OR GUY FIERI IN THE SAME PLACE AT THE SAME TIME?”

Fieri laughed.

“I Tweeted it out. I thought it was funny as hell.”

Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

At Guy Fieri's Philly Kitchen & Bar there are many items that serve as an ode to Philadelphia favorites, including the Philly Cheesesteak burger and Philly soft pretzel buns.

Last week, PhillyVoice took a trip to Flavortown for a tour of “Guy’s Philly Kitchen & Bar” inside Harrah’s Philadelphia casino in Chester. The restaurant features Fieri’s trademark culinary favorites, like his award-winning bacon mac-and-cheese burger, as well as unique twists on traditionals with a smoked cheesesteak and roast pork and broccoli rabe sandwich, among many more.

Although “Guy’s Philly Kitchen & Bar” officially opened last fall, it was Fieri's first time stepping foot in his latest brick and mortar endeavor, and last week’s exclusive private engagement was an opportunity for select members of the media to sit down and talk with the Food Network star one-on-one, sample specialty cocktails and try some of his signature dishes.

The bleach blond dad of two expressed a great appreciation for the east coast, and Philadelphia, especially, because of its rich history.

“Being a west coast guy, we don’t get that over there. So, the first time I came to Philly – I was telling Sly Stallone this the other day...” he said.

“...I came to Philly, and the first thing I did was I ran my skateboard – I had my son with me. Hunter was maybe 10 or 11, and I rode my skateboard down the path to the art museum to go see the Rocky statue and it was the greatest thing. I was a little disappointed that it wasn’t on top of the steps. We still ran the steps anyway.”

Asked how he got his television food show off the ground, Fieri gave a lot of credit to the people behind the scenes.

“Look, I can’t take all the credit. Triple D is a show for the people,” he said.

Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

General Manager Karlos LaSane III shows Guy Fieri around the restaurant for the first time since opening.

On “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives,” Fieri has visited almost every state, save for four – Delaware, North Dakota, South Dakota and Montana. Known for his impressive car collection, he said, aside from his red Camaro, only his all-time favorite – his yellow, 1971 Super Sport Chevelle – has made it on the show once, during the show’s pilot.

What’s more, his cars barely have any miles on them.

“I drive my kids to school and back,” he shrugged.

When here on Wednesday in the City of Brotherly Love, the King of Flavortown said he was still craving a cheesesteak, but wanted to try something a little different.

I’m just like everybody else in that I’m looking for the funky joints."

“I’ve always gone Jim’s, Geno’s – and they’re all great – don’t get me wrong…but I wanted to go somewhere different, so we went to Dalessandro’s in Roxborough. Tiny little joint. Line out the door. Nicest people in the world. Carol, that worked the counter, had been there for 38 years. We just had the coolest time,” he said.

“I’m just like everybody else in that I’m looking for the funky joints. I want to know where the hell to go. That’s what Triple D really is. People, on a regular basis, are asking me, ‘where should we go?’ And I think we have four states left to do and then I think we’ll have completed the entire United States!”

But back to those Fieri look-a-likes, which we just keep chuckling at.

“Here’s my philosophy on it – if that is getting attention – and I didn’t do this for attention, but if that’s what people go towards, that’s fine,” he said with a smile.

“It’s the greatest form of flattery, right? I mean how many Elvises are there? My son’s about to be a junior in college and he’ll send them to me every once in a while – ones of a little baby porcupine. It’s hysterical.”