LOGAN SQUARE — Logan Square is getting a late-night hot dog joint from prolific restaurateur Esam Hani.
Hani, owner of seven bars and restaurants in the 2700 block of North Milwaukee Avenue, is opening the spot at 2704 N. Milwaukee Ave., right next to his newest restaurant, The Old Plank. Hani hopes to open the hot dog spot, tentatively named Mr. E’s, in spring, he said.
“I go to Portillo’s all the time with my daughter to eat hot dogs, but there’s nothing [like that] where we’re at,” Hani said. “Who doesn’t like a good hot dog, a good Polish once in a while?”
Hani said the new spot will be decidedly no-frills. The storefront was most recently home to a currency exchange-type business that handled electronic transfers to Mexico and other Spanish-speaking countries.
“I want it to look like a hot dog stand. I’m not trying to make it a fou-fou chic Hot Doug’s. It’s going to be Vienna Beef hot dogs, Italian beef, polish combos. … No chairs, just a counter to eat at,” he said.
The counter spot will open at 11 a.m. and close at 2 a.m. every day except Saturdays, when it’ll close at 3 a.m.
It will be Hani’s eighth business on the block. Hani owns The Old Plank, Saba, Café Con Leche, De Noche Mexicana, Harding Tavern, Red Star Liquor Store and the Walk-In.
Hani was planning on taking over the former Heavenly Gelato spot at 2662 N. Sawyer Ave., but he ended up stepping aside and letting Black Dog Gelato move in.
After the hot dog joint, he’s not planning on opening anymore businesses on the Milwaukee Avenue stretch for the foreseeable future.
“That’ll be it for a while. I want to breathe a little bit — just chill and enjoy the summers with my daughter,” he said.
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