Reactions Mixed To Steak Shop's Name Change - Philadelphia News, Weather and Sports from WTXF FOX 29

Reactions Mixed To Steak Shop's Name Change

Posted: Updated:
PHILADELPHIA -

An iconic Northeast Philadelphia cheese steak shop is about to get a new name, in hopes of shedding an old controversy.

On Monday, "Chink's Steaks" at 6030 Torresdale Ave. will change its name to "Joe's Steaks + Soda Shop."

"Joe" is owner Joe Groh, who took over the shop from the man who opened the business back in 1949: Sam "Chink" Sherman, so nicknamed by his boyhood friends for his "slanty" eyes.

Chink's is a famous fixture in the city's Wissinoming neighborhood, but the folks who run it came to realize that not everyone in the city found the name inviting.

"We just want to be more culturally sensitive," manager Stefani Mahoney told FOX 29's Bruce Gordon. "And we want to be able to expand, and that was hard to do with the 'Chink's name."

The Chink's controversy has raged – off and on – for nearly a decade, and many customers in this busy eatery seem to think it's much ado about nothing.

"They don't mean nothing by it," said one woman.  "It's just the name of the place." 

"The first time I heard it I was like, 'Really? It's called Chink's Steaks?' said a man a few booths away. "But, that's what it's called."

To Philadelphia's Asian American community, using a racial slur as a business name is a very big deal.

"We welcome the change," says Kay Kyungsun Yu, who, as president of the Asian Pacific Bar Association of Pennsylvania, negotiated with Groh over a name change back in 2008.  "We never wanted to harm Mr. Groh's business in any way. We wanted to find solutions that would work for all of us. Would we have preferred for it to have happened sooner? Absolutely. But we welcome the fact that it's happening now."

The official name change takes place on April Fool's Day, but the ad agency handling the re-branding insists it's no joke.

Oh, and in case you were wondering about longtime customers disappointed by what they consider a surrender to political correctness?

They're snapping up T-shirts with the iconic "Chink's Steaks" logo before the last batch disappears.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Getting Results: Woman Says Her Car Was Damaged By Plow Truck

    Getting Results: Woman Says Her Car Was Damaged By Plow Truck

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 9:05 PM EDT2014-04-24 01:05:44 GMT
    When a worker for a State Agency accidentally does you harm, you might expect to be compensated in some way.However, when an Emergency Proclamation is declared all bets are off/Sheila Bradley-Oben searched for photos that illustrate the scene when her son called her the night of February 13th.“He was like, 'Mom, I have something to tell you...your car has been damaged.' and I said, 'damaged?' what happened?” Oben explained.She says her 2002 Nissan Altima was covered in a mound of ice and snow...
    When a worker for a State Agency accidentally does you harm, you might expect to be compensated in some way.However, when an Emergency Proclamation is declared all bets are off/Sheila Bradley-Oben searched for photos that illustrate the scene when her son called her the night of February 13th.“He was like, 'Mom, I have something to tell you...your car has been damaged.' and I said, 'damaged?' what happened?” Oben explained.She says her 2002 Nissan Altima was covered in a mound of ice and snow...
  • Sexual Assault Reported At West Chester University

    Sexual Assault Reported At West Chester University

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 8:36 PM EDT2014-04-24 00:36:38 GMT
    According to the Department of Public Safety at West Chester University, they received a report of an indecent assault occurring at approximately 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday in the Frances Harvey Greene Library.
    According to the Department of Public Safety at West Chester University, they received a report of an indecent assault occurring at approximately 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday in the Frances Harvey Greene Library.
  • How-To Prevent Workout Injuries

    How-To Prevent Workout Injuries

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 7:41 PM EDT2014-04-23 23:41:59 GMT
    From gyms to bike trails, children to seniors, people are rushing out of hibernation and getting busy working out, but there may be a price.
    From gyms to bike trails, children to seniors, people are rushing out of hibernation and getting busy working out, but there may be a price.
Powered by WorldNow

WTXF-TV
330 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106-2796

Phone: (215) 925-2929
Fax: (215) 982-5494

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices