Inside Pizzeria Beddia’s $450-a-Night Hoagie Room
In the restaurant’s secret back room, sandwiches become the star.
There’s a ridiculousness about the Hoagie Room. Without a doubt, the concept is a success — a small private dining room in the back of Pizzeria Beddia where Joe Beddia’s friend and teammate, John Walker, throws hoagie parties. It’s predicated on the idea that hoagies deserve any sort of culinary stardom at all. In theory, they don’t. But this is Philly, a city that loves itself and its food culture, so the Hoagie Room is often sold out.
There isn’t a menu in the Hoagie Room. It’s $450 all-in, six people minimum (for cost-effectiveness) and maximum (the room is pretty tight). That’s $75 a person, which gets you a round of cocktails, some regular-menu apps to share, then hoagies, pizza and ice cream. The $450 does not include wine (one of the restaurant’s biggest draws), but it does include access to special wine: Joe Beddia’s magnum collection, which, like the hoagies, is only offered in the Hoagie Room. There’s no wine menu. Walker will suggest some; you’ll choose others based on the label and color. You’ll learn the price after the bill drops. But money doesn’t matter in the Hoagie Room. It shouldn’t, at least.
Inside, the walls are finished with dark Japanese plaster. The table is a blond wood, and there’s an Andy Warhol print on the wall. It’s an original Warhol, so you Instagram it. You Instagram the Negroni, and the judion beans. You Instagram Walker making your hoagies, and then the hoagies — one stuffed with roasted vegetables, another with traditional Italian meats, a third with Italian tuna and smoked sardines. All on house-baked bread. You make a Boomerang of everyone cheers-ing their hoagies. You Instagram the pies, of course, and the ice cream.
You Instagram all of it, because this is a ridiculous moment in Philly’s culinary history, when we’re all, for whatever reason, freaking out about hoagies and pizza.
Published as “Have a Fancy Hoagie Party.” in the October 2019 issue of Philadelphia magazine.