#30 – Eat at the Vienna Beef Factory Store


If you’ve ever driven down Damen and Fullerton, chances are that you’ve passed by the Vienna Beef Factory Outlet Store. Situated not too far from bridges on both Fullerton and Damen, you’ll find a chain linked fence surrounding the giant parking lot leading your way to meat heaven. Picnic tables and umbrellas line the sidewalk leading into the factory outlet store and a man driving into the lot asked me if it was possible to stop in and get food in there. While I hadn’t ever set foot into the factory outlet store, my answer was a resounding, “Yes!”

Who hasn’t had a Vienna Beef hot dog in Chicago? It’s practically the ISO9000 seal of quality control letting you know that this is some of Chicago’s finest meat – fit for a king! Vienna Beef is as ubiquitous as Kronos Gyros or the lesser known Il Taco Pizza Puff. Vienna Beef hot dogs have been manufactured in Chicago since the 1890’s and the tradition continues on today.  There’s something about biting into a Vienna Beef hot dog that just lets you know this is no Oscar Mayer or Sara Lee’s Ball Park Franks.

Stepping inside, I escaped the heat and marveled at all of the refrigerated cases all over the place. There were some boxes scattered about, but people were busy loading up the refrigerators for all of the hungry people yet to come. I went to snap a picture of the meat, but a worker quickly yelled, “No pictures! No pictures!” I wanted to take more pictures of the shop and factory, but I had to content myself with taking it all in.

There were plenty of workers in hairnets ordering food from the counter. The menu included, hot dogs, Italian beef sandwiches, burgers, deli sandwiches, and other treats. Being at the Vienna Beef Factory Outlet Store, I ordered two Vienna Beef hot dogs with the fixings and decided to take it outside. Saying goodbye to all of the deli meat, dogs, sausages, burgers, and Italian beef kits, I sat outside at one of the picnic tables to check out my dogs and verify their authenticity.

The Chicago-style hot dog has its roots in our city’s meat packing districts and factories. Workers would come out to lunch and wouldn’t have much money – so they’d order an inexpensive hot dog and load it up with all the fixings. The extra toppings gave the hot dog more volume and whetted the appetites of thousands of workers daily. On my lighter version of the Chicago-style hot dog, I loaded mine up up with relish, onions, yellow mustard, and a pickle – this hot dog would do the trick! Missing were the hot peppers and tomato slices, but I don’t really like them.

There you have it – a trip to an obscure landmark in the background. Most people probably see the Vienna Beef Factory Store Outlet in the background and assume it’s just for workers. Now you know you can stop here not only for lunch, but to grab supplies for your next barbecue. Check out the Vienna Beef Factory Store and get your meat fix right here!

Tags: ,

10 Responses to “#30 – Eat at the Vienna Beef Factory Store”

  1. Steve says:

    Wow! Add this one to the food pilgrimage list! I love Vienna Beef dogs and whenever we’re in Chicago, I make sure to hit one of the old stands for a “real” hot dog experience. I had no idea Vienna Beef had factory store that served dogs to the public. Time to book the ticket and fly east.
    Steve & Jason

  2. dervish says:


    […]#30 – Eat at the Vienna Beef Factory Store « The Chicago Bucket List[…]…

  3. sms says:


    […]#30 – Eat at the Vienna Beef Factory Store « The Chicago Bucket List[…]…

  4. Jim Bob may be the consequence of liver cirrhosis and
    pneumonia. Levin, who added that ”the older you are, the more bureaucracy
    needs to be given between ages 4 and 6 years of age. Doc kata dia
    kena chicken pox atau pelalian chicken pox. It attacks the liver and other organs
    of the body.

  5. An outstanding share! I have just forwarded this onto a co-worker who was conducting a little
    homework on this. And he actually ordered me dinner due to the fact that I discovered it for him…
    lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thank YOU for the meal!!
    But yeah, thanx for spending time to discuss this matter here on your blog.

  6. I was curious if you ever considered changing the layout of your website?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to
    say. But maybe you could a little more in the way of content
    so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot
    of text for only having one or two pictures. Maybe you could space it out better?

  7. Therefore, it protects the interests of the client as
    well as of those who visit the site. They would assist you in building your web presence and creating the identity of your brand.

    This gives you an opportunity to go through and approve the step-by-step process of
    transforming your website into a lucrative venture.

    My blog; review of source phoenix

  8. It’s not my first time to go to see this site, i am browsing
    this web page dailly and take nice data from here daily.

    Look at my weblog; http://discounthoarder.com/ on pinterest
    On pinterest (http://discounthoarder.com/)

  9. If some one wants expert view on the topic of
    blogging and site-building after that i recommend him/her to go to
    see this weblog, Keep up the pleasant work.

  10. Donna says:

    Needless to express, the holiday to Florida wasn’t quite what Marc expected.
    First coming from all, there aren’t only a variety of shapes and
    sizes of diamonds to pick from, but in addition different
    specifications off clarity aand color. The biggest difference between tis
    kind of ring along with the “traditional” gemstone could be
    that the diamonds don’t protrude right out of
    the ring.

    my blog post: simple (Donna)

Your Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.