The sign outside declares this place to be home of the char-broiled cheddarburger, and a comely patty of beef it is. But the name is The Wiener’s Circle, a typically Chicagoan bit of culinary word play that lets you know what’s really important. Here are seriously good Chicago-style hot dogs, served in steamy soft Rosen-brand poppy seed buns and topped with flawless condiments.
The major decision to make, dog-wise, is whether you want it boiled or charred. At many of Chicago’s red-hot joints, we recommend boiled or steamed because it yields the plumpest, tautest skin; but here at the Wiener’s Circle, charred is the way to go. Cooked on the grate just behind the order counter, the char dogs get a good crunch from the flames. For us, this rugged tube steak nestled in its super-tender bun is the essence Chicago.
Wiener’s Circle French fries are among the best: crisp and fatty, impossible to stop eating.
Inside, the perimeter of the Wiener’s Circle is outfitted with counters and stools well-suited for hot-dog eating and for gazing out the window at Clark Street. Outside is a row of picnic benches.