I grew up in Milwaukee knowing chili as the chili soup my mother would make. Thin and with elbo macaroni and kidney beans. The next step was the brief time that Chili John’s of Green Bay had a shop in Milwaukee. I ate the stuff several times a week. A friend of mine was a fan of Real Chili in downtown and both were close in taste and style but Chili John’s had more fat in it. If you let the bowl cool it would turn solid!
They closed the Milwaukee shop and now are in Green Bay only on Military Road and also in the new Packer’s Stadium. When in town on business, it is a must have for a meal.
Since my introduction to the two chili shops, I’ve frequently made my own, favoring either Carol Shelby’s or Wick Fowler’s kits. I usually doctor them up in an attempt to duplicate Chili John’s or Real Chili’s but am missing some ingrediante(s). One ingrediant that I add generously is cumin and yes, I add all of the hot pepper. I’ve often wondered about other additions. I’ve heard that cooking chocolate is one. Sorry, cinnamon doesn’t do it for me.