“Ike knows virtually nothing about hoagies. I, on the other hand, consider myself an expert. I know hoagies. So just get over it,” NBC 10’s Vai Sikahema said.
The ex-Eagle took to the field Saturday – or plate, rather -- along with former Eagle and WIP host Ike Reese in the quest to find the best hoagie in WIP’s Great Hoagie Hunt.
And a king was crowned -- Paesano’s Italian hoagie in Northern Liberties received 278 out of 300 possible points from the celebrity judges.
But Vai and Ike didn’t agree on the quality and taste of the hoagie, so punches were thrown. Ok, so fists didn’t really fly, but Inquirer staff writer Peter Mucha would tell a different story.
“Ike Reese was getting annoyed with Vai Sikahema’s reviews. Too long-winded apparently. Too attentive to detail,” Mucha wrote.
Reese at one point went as far as to scream out that Vai was “embarrassing.”
Sikahema admits that he and Reese had their differences, but insists Mucha's take is much ado about nothing.
“This reporter, Peter Mucha, would have his readers believe Ike Reese was actually annoyed with me. He wasn’t. We’re good friends. And we had fun ribbing each other over the air and during commercial breaks,” Vai said in a written statement.
And as for Vai being "long-winded":
“I was ‘attentive to detail’…We had 2 hrs to fill and 7 hoagies. Ok, I’ll admit that I deliberately went long, but good guests learn to filibuster until they’re cut off…And it’s not like I had nothing to say,” Vai said.
But, did Paesano’s rank supreme among the huge crowd at Fox & Hound in King of Prussia who attended the event?
Nope! The “Listeners’ Choice” award went to Primo Hoagies.
Maybe they don’t have what it takes to judge such a cutthroat competition.
The final results, thanks to the expertise of Vai and several other celebrity judges, were:
1. Paesano's, 278 points
2. Carlino's Market, Ardmore, 275
3. Sarcone's Deli, South Philadelphia, 274
4. Pastaficio, South Philadelphia, 255
5. Primo Hoagies, Ritner Street in South Philadelphia (and other locations), 253
6. Pallante's, Richboro, 248
7. Shank's & Evelyn's, reopening in Center City this summer, 209