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Back in the late 1960’s, Mike and Ann Antonopoulos began a little family restaurant on the northwest side of Chicago. Little did they realize then that this small food specialty shop would become a neighborhood icon nearly a half century later. With the help of their son John, for the past couple of decades, Mr. D’s has been preparing memorable sandwiches to four generations of repeat customers.
As a family owned and operated restaurant preparing great food, many of their customers who have moved to the suburbs and out of town always seem to find their way back; usually bringing in other folks with them so they can brag about this neighborhood gem of their youth. Whether it’s their famous steak sandwich or the equally popular shish-kabob sandwich; or a Vienna Beef hot dog and polish sausage; it’s made with loving care and ingredients. And let’s not forget those amazing fresh cut fries, as well.
Mr. D’s was chosen to be featured on one of the first shows of WGN’s Chicago’s Best nearly ten years ago. Reviewed in Food Industry News and recommended by Alderman Nick Sposato, in addition to other restaurant owners, it’s no wonder that Vienna Beef has chosen to honor Mr. D’s and welcome the Antonopoulos family as the newest member of the Hot Dog Hall of Fame; with heartfelt congratulations and wishing much continued success.
This Little Italy food icon actually began back in 1917, when Anthony Ferrari started making his own seasoned beef and peddled it in the neighborhood and for weddings. But jump ahead 20 years to 1938, when Anthony’s kids; Al Ferrari and his sister and brother in law, Frances and Chris Pacelli Sr further developed the beef recipe and sold it in their stand. In 1968, the family, with cousins, Chris and Terry at the helm, opened at their current digs on Taylor, adding Italian sausage and Vienna Beef hot dogs, as well as other specialties to round out the menu.
Al’s has truly been a father of the now famous Chicago style Italian Beef, with yet another generation of Chris Pacelli and Terry Ferrari involved in all facets of the business including catering. Their success has been due to generations of family hard work and, of course, consistent product that has led to the franchising of Al’s Beef; their great name and quality is now available around Chicago and throughout the country. They have been honored with Best Beef in Chicago awards and have appeared on numerous television stations and shows from NBC’s Today Show, to the Food Network and Travel Channel, A&E and PBS. Celebrities like Jay Leno and Jim Belushi, as well as the cast of Chicago Fire stop by for their Al’s treat.
At Vienna Beef, we are proud to have been along for the ride contributing Chicago’s iconic hot dog to the already iconic mix featuring Al’s century old recipe; and welcome the Original Al’s Beef into the Vienna Beef Hot Dog Hall of Fame. From all of us at Vienna, we say thanks, and wish the Ferrari and Pacelli families much continued success.
It’s been nearly a quarter of a century since Bonnie and Eddie Tefka jump started this Chicago loop fast food oasis. As a family business, they have taken great pride in serving awesome food and developing friends out of their many repeat customers who keep coming back and are like family.
Voted best burger in town even before burgers became fashionable’ is just part of their bill of fare which includes their great Italian Beef and Vienna Beef hot dogs and polish sausage and much more produced by the Tefka’s and their always reliable Chef Kleo. Community and charity driven, Eddie and Bonnie are active supporters of Catholic charities and the Robert Lurie Children’s Hospital. The place is a blast from the past with big trains going by outside and little trains inside and was even a movie set once upon a time for a Dolly Parton film.
Fast Track is what the Vienna Beef Hall of Fame is all about: great food, a feeling of customer belonging and a credit to the community. This is why Vienna acknowledges and thanks Bonnie and Eddie, and welcomes Fast Track into the Vienna Beef Hot Dog Hall of Fame. From all of us at Vienna, we say congratulations and wish you much continued success.
Flips Hot Dogs & Beef has now been around the Glen Ellyn community for half a century. But it was Peter Margaris and his wife Vicki who took the reins nearly 25 years ago. Now together with his son Bob, Peter has taken Flip’s to neighborhood iconic status.
With their Vienna Beef products and homemade saganaki cheese squares, gyros, chicken and beef, Peter and Bob serve “the absolute best products” to three generations of customers who keep coming back. It is family owned and operated where they support many sport, scout and church events. Together with longtime employees like Mike and Sara, the Margaris’ family is proud to be an established part of the Glen Ellyn community.
Now it’s Vienna’s turn to acknowledge, thank and congratulate Peter and Bob Margaris and welcome Flip’s Hot Dogs into the Vienna Beef Hot Dog Hall of Fame. From all of us at Vienna, we wish Flip’s much continued success.
In the heart of Chicago’s near west side, Richard and Robert Martin opened a neighborhood bar at the corner of 22nd Place and Hoyne back in 1951. That bar, obviously called Martin’s Corner has remained in the family; and in 1985, Robert (Bob) Martin Jr. took over. Bob had grown up in the area and attended church and school at nearby St. Paul’s. He immediately added a small restaurant with homemade food and soup specialties and featuring Vienna Beef hot dogs and polish sausage.
The place has continued to become an important neighborhood icon; owned and operated as a family business for two thirds of a century and carrying a quality food menu for the past thirty years. Bob’s two sisters have also been working along side. Besides good food and drink; Bob Martin has given back to the community in many big ways. From his ‘Heart of Chicago’ charity of raising over a quarter million dollars in scholarships for area kids to working with the police to develop community outreach basketball camps, Martin has been an integral part of the neighborhood and an important neighbor and business operator who cares. The place itself has so much nostalgic charm that in 1985, a scene from the movie ‘The Untouchables’ was filmed there and now thirty years later, a couple of scenes from the popular TV series, ‘Chicago PD’, was filmed there, as well.
It is now Vienna’s turn to acknowledge and thank Robert Martin and his supportive, working family; and Welcome with great pride and distinction, Martin’s Corner into the Vienna Beef Hall of Fame. From all us at Vienna, we wish Martin’s Corner much continued success.
Terry Creamer has been a workaholic all his life and has instilled the same work ethic to his son Tim. In 1963, Terry started up not one, but two fast food places at Cicero at Monroe and Central at Lake at almost the same time. Ten years later he said, “What’s one more;” and opened at Madison at Austin; which is where Tim has carried on the tradition of over half a century. The other two are gone now, but Tim keeps this neighborhood icon going strong. Terry’s Place has become a fixture to second and even third generation customers where even much of the staff has been around for many years, including Juan, Roberto, Eddie and Carlos.
From those Vienna Beef hot dogs, polish sausage and corned beef to specialties like their gyros burrito and pizza puff that covers a plate, the food has become king. The accolades of which have become almost as plentiful as the place itself. After forty years at this location and over fifty years overall, it’s not difficult to figure out the reasons behind this success story.
It is with great admiration and thanks that Vienna Beef welcomes Terry’s Place into the Vienna Beef Hot Dog Hall of Fame. From all of us at Vienna, we with Tim and Terry’s Place much continued success.