The owners of JJ's Red Hots built their eatery as an homage to time-honored stands in hot-dog meccas such as Chicago and Buffalo. A retro-style neon sign beckons diners to the low-slung building, where sausages, chili, and hot dogs transport tongues to a bygone era when food was always made by hand. Martin's potato rolls cradle Sahlen’s smokehouse hot dogs, which can be dressed with toppings such as house-cured bacon, sweet chili sauce, and borracho beans. The Chicago-style dog wears a crown of sport peppers, deli mustard, and celery salt, declaring its supremacy over the Windy City without welding a throne to the top of the Willis Tower. To stay true to the idea of handmade food, the chefs craft their own salmon and chicken sausage and bratwurst and squeeze fresh fruitades every day.
The interior of the JJ's puts a modern spin on nostalgic decor. Black-and-white photos of those classic hot-dog stands line a crimson wall, lit from above by a chandelier constructed from a defunct set of drums. Diners can also sit on the rooftop patio, where umbrellas protect them from the glare of the sun, for whom a good hot dog is always just out of reach.