THE LOOP — When Kristen and Dominick Liberio celebrated their wedding, they didn’t just do it with an “I do” and a kiss — they also split a hot dog.
The Liberios, who wed on Sept. 7, knew they wanted Portillo’s to be a part of their wedding day well before they walked down the aisle. Dominick Liberio is a Portillo’s fan, stopping by once or twice a month, and he had suggested they get the Chicago-area chain’s famous hot dogs and beef sandwiches as a late-night treat for guests at their reception after the main dinner.
“My husband is just — he loves it,” Kristen Liberio said.
While Kristen Liberio, who works in The Loop, grew up eating Portillo’s, she’d never before imagined serving hot dogs at her wedding. Still, she had no “reservations or worries” once Dominick tossed out the idea: They contacted a family friend, who works at Portillo’s, and the friend planned to set up a special catering package for the reception.
Coincidentally, Portillo’s was already working on offering wedding packages, as it announced earlier this month. Its Newlywed Spread is crafted to feed guests late at night, with brides- and grooms-to-be able to choose from Portillo’s menu and bring in a cheese fountain. A new shippable kit of Portillo’s most famous goodies is also available for those too far from a restaurant for catering.
The Liberios settled on Portillo’s hot dogs, onion rings and beef sandwiches alongside a cheese fountain to make the groom — and their guests — happy.
Some of the guests knew there’d be Portillo’s beforehand, Kristen Liberio said, but others were surprised at the nontraditional snack.
“It was amazing. There was not one crumb left over at the end of the night,” Kristen Liberio said. Guests “absolutely loved it. A lot of them had never been to a wedding with Portillo’s as the late-night” snack.
Dominick Liberio chowed down on Italian beef and the newlyweds split a hot dog covered in cheese from the fountain.
(It wasn’t far from their typical order: Kristen likes plain hot dogs while Dominick loves beef sandwiches, burgers and hot dogs.)
The two received “a ton of compliments,” Kristen Liberio said, and Dominick Liberio was “very happy.”
Kristen’s one gripe, she said: “I wish I would have had more. I only had half a hot dog.”
Do stories like this matter to you? Subscribe to Block Club Chicago. Every dime we make funds reporting from Chicago’s neighborhoods.