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Chicago Beef & Dog now serving pizza

December 1, 2017
By CHUCK BALLARO ( , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Everyone knows about Chicago-style hot dogs, loaded with tomatoes, pickles and mustard on a poppy-seed roll.

Well, Chicago is also well known for its pizza, from thin-crust to one loaded with meat and veggies in a deep dish.

Last week, Chicago Beef & Dog, at 3812 Skyline Blvd., introduced pizza as a new offering with a free tasting, and placing it on its menu as one of its usual items.

Article Photos


Owner Rick Haas and manager Judy Soehnlein of Chicago Beef & Dogs at 3812 Skyline Blvd., in Cape Coral.

Chicago Beef & Dog opened in February and Rick Haas has seen his business continue strong, thanks to his authentic take on Chicago-style food, which he said he couldn't find when he first moved here from Chicago in 2005.

"We couldn't find authentic Chicago-style beef. A lot of places made their own stuff, but it wasn't authentic and we were very disappointed," Haas said.

Haas, with his wife, started Taste of Chicago in Naples with the idea of an authentic Chicago dining experience. Among those who came in was Dick Portillo, a Chicago institution and one of Haas' heroes.

"He said we were doing a good job. He was a god in Chicago," Haas said. "I admired him because he started out with nothing but a dream and became successful even when they said he would never make it."

After selling the Naples restaurant, the Haases came to the Cape to open this location.

After a few months in business, Haas said people started asking for pizza. He looked into it, trying to create the perfect sauce for the pizza, which took forever to get it just right before unveiling it on Nov. 16 with a tasting.

Chicago Beef & Dog offers three kinds of pizza: deep-dish, thin crust and traditional. The pizzas have that sweet sauce, buttery crust and "pull cheese," which means it should string out when hot, meaning its of high quality, Haas said, adding that he also has frozen pizza for those who want something more convenient on the go.

Haas said he will go to any length to provide authentic Chicago products. To get Tom-Tom Hot Tamales, he drove all the way to Chicago to get them.

"We drove 1,800 miles round trip in a freezer truck to get them. We only have about three cases left. We'll have to go back and get more," Haas said.

Other Chicago favorites include Jay's Potato Chips and Caruso and Green River sodas.

But the star is the Vienna beef, which Haas said is juicy and should be enjoyed with every bite. It is used with all the hot dogs he makes, from his state-theme dogs to his "Monster of the Midway," a tamale and a Vienna hot dog with chili, cheese and onions on a poppy-seed bun.

Haas said they offer delivery and will soon start offering specials in the newspaper, including $5 off a $30 order.

Chicago Beef & Dog is open Monday through Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Thursday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

For more information, go to the restaurant's Facebook page or call 347-8111.



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