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Since its eponymous owner Fat Phil, local food blogger and hot-dog connoisseur opened Phil's Last Stand in early 2012, the restaurant has earned accolades from myriad local press outlets. The Chicago Reader warns that "to dismiss Phil's would be a mistake" calling its signature offering "a truly excellent, snappy char dog." TimeOut Chicago agreed, naming it Best New Hot Dog Stand, and Serious Eats Chicago says its burgers are "in a whole other league."
Though small, the eatery's bright-red exterior makes it hard to miss. Picnic tables outside enable diners to eat alfresco, and inside, a charcoal grill stays fired up as late as 4 a.m. to cater to late-night revelers. The grill's flames crisp the natural casing on hot dogs and polish sausages and brand burgers with evenly spaced lines. The kitchen also fries freshly breaded jumbo shrimp, 2 pounds of which are folded into an enormous po' boy during the Fatso's Challenge. Anyone brave enough to try the challenge must finish the behemoth sandwich within 60 minutes in order to win a T-shirt, his or her name engraved on a plaque, and at least three pats on the back.
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