The Iconic Chicago Hot Dog Stand

Posted on January 21, 2018 by Phillip Thompson | 0 comments

I made this little illustration of one of the little wonders of the city: The iconic Chicago hot dog stand. Love these spots. Here's my piece. And below the drawing, all the must-haves for any truly authentic Chicago hot dog joint.

Chicago hot dog stand

  1. Painted in super-bright colors. By that I mean red and yellow. Picnic table & an umbrella that matches the building.

  2. Called Sammy’s, Marty’s, Charlie's. A name that sounds like someone your grandpa would have a coffee with.

  3. Proudly World Famous, Original, Founded circa 1954 or some combination in a fifties-era font.

  4. Some relics of the good old days that actually date back to the good old days. For a few examples: a newspaper dispenser, pinball, gumball machine.

  5. Some hints of their old logo or old name, maybe on a second sign or inside.

  6. On the front of the building, everything on their menu painted in big letters.

  7. Inside, a menu with replaceable letters and very bare-bones descriptions, like "Hot Dog -  $3."
  8. Vienna Beef logos. Bonus: The Vienna Beef poster with the gigantic hot dog on Navy Pier.

  9. Two line cooks with their heads down, working like crazy, radio turned up.

  10. Amazing meats and fries, unbelievable cheap, incredibly fast.


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