Thursday, August 23, 2007

Jimmy's Red Hots

4000 W. Grand Ave

The 40-year old late night West Side hot dog stand calls itself the "home of the tube steak on a bun," serving up Vienna beef hot dogs, Polish sausages and tamales with thick French fries on the side. Ketchup is strictly forbidden.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Maxwell Street Polish

A Maxwell Street Polish consists of a grilled all-beef Polish sausage topped with grilled onions and mustard on a bun. The sandwich was first created by Jimmy Stefanovic, a Macedonian immigrant, who took over his aunt and uncle's hot-dog stand (now Jim's Original) in Chicago's Maxwell Street marketplace in 1939.[1] It is sometime referred to as a "Jewtown Dog," or "Jew Dog"[citation needed]. (Part of the market was called Jewtown after the original Jewish merchants.)

The Maxwell Street Polish soon grew to be one of Chicago's most popular local dishes, along with the Chicago hot-dog. It is served by restaurants around the city, and is common at sporting events. Many small vendors specialize in the Maxwell Street Polish along with the pork-chop sandwich.

Some variations exist. For example, some hot-dog vendors offer a "Maxwell Street hot dog" in which a hot dog is substituted for the Polish sausage. Others like to add sport peppers to the Maxwell Street to give it more heat.

Due to UIC's South Campus development (ongoing construction, started in 2002), the two famous Maxwell Street Polish stands on the corner of Halsted and Maxwell streets, Jim's Original and Maxwell St. Express Grill, were displaced to nearby Union Avenue, adjacent to the Dan Ryan Expressway on-ramp at Roosevelt Road.

Friday, August 17, 2007


Portillo's Hot Dogs
The best food and the best service!

Welcome to Portillo's Hot Dogs, Inc., started in 1963 by Dick Portillo in a small trailer and soon will be operating in 31 locations. His dedication to serving "the best food" and "the best service" available will make it worth your visit. Requests for his "type" of food and "service" are received daily at the corporate office from many of the 50 states (including Alaska) and many foreign countries. Calls from Taiwan, the Phillipines, Singapore, China, Europe, and Korea are just a few. Customers in the Chicagoland area also call frequently requesting a store just "a little closer to our house."

So, come enjoy what we hope you will find to be the best Hot Dog, Italian Beef, Maxwell Street Polish, Tasty Burgers, Fresh Salads and more at any of our locations. Bring the kids and ENJOY!

Portillo's won so many Silver Platter awards (the "Oscars" of the food industry) that the company retired from competition for 5 years to give others a chance. Come try our award-winning food and see if you agree.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Parky's Hot Dogs, Forest Park

Parky's Hot Dogs
329 Harlem Ave
Forest Park, IL 60130-1607
Phone: (708) 366-3090

Cross Street: Washington Boulevard Directions: El: Green Line to Harlem/Lake; bus: 357 to Washington
Specialties: French Fries, Hot Dog
Hours: Mon-Sat 10am-9pm, Sun 11am-7pm

In Short
This compact orange-and-white A-frame has just a couple of stools at the window for seating, plus outdoor picnic tables during warm weather. Folks don't mind waiting for David Berg hot dogs--shorter and plumper than Vienna Beef, and steamed, not grilled. The basic dog gets mustard, chopped onion, pickle relish, tomato and peppers. Also available are chili cheese dogs, Polish sausages, grilled burgers, chicken sandwiches and Italian beef; all served with long, thin fries.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

History of the Chicago Hot Dog

The "Chicago Style" hot dog got its start from street cart hot dog vendors during the hard times of the Great Depression. Money was scarce, but business was booming for these entrepreneurs who offered a delicious hot meal on a bun for only a nickel. The famous Chicago Style Hot Dog was born! They'd start with a Vienna Beef hot dog, nestle it in a steamed poppyseed bun and cover it with a wonderful combination of toppings: yellow mustard, bright green relish, fresh chopped onions, juicy red tomato wedges, a kosher-style pickle spear, a couple of spicy sport peppers and finally, a dash of celery salt. This unique hot dog creation with a "salad on top" and its memorable interplay of hot and cold, crisp and soft, sharp and smooth, became America's original fast food and a true Chicago institution.