steve's hot dogs photo by adam rothbarth

First Look: Steve's Hot Dog's new location on South Grand

“I have some great memories here,” said Steve’s Hot Dogs owner Steve Ewing of Mangia Italiano (3145 S. Grand Blvd.), the beloved and infamous late night spot that closed in late 2020. Now, years later, he’s moving his popular restaurant into the space. “As a working musician I was in here a lot – it’s always been an industry hangout.”  

When Mangia closed, Ewing had the opportunity to take the entire space, but declined because it was too big. So they split the restaurant in two and he took half of it, which, at 2,200 square feet, is still over twice the size of his previous spot at 3457 Magnolia Ave. When Steve’s Hot Dogs opens in its new home on South Grand this Friday, Sept. 25, there will be around 50 seats, with an additional 32 outside and around the side of the building.  

The move wasn’t exactly easy, but it was necessary. “We needed a full kitchen, and we wanted to be able to have the bar,” Ewing explained. They had to completely redo the floors and they did a lot of painting and repairs. But with the larger, refurbished space comes some new additions to the Steve’s Hot Dogs brand. 

For one, Steve’s has fries now. A whole fries menu. Like, we’re talking loaded fries. “For years, people would say, ‘No fries here. Chips.’ But we have a lot of new customers that are asking for fries,” Ewing said. So he gave in. Otherwise, the menu is largely the same: stacked hot dogs (including a build-your-own), chili, mac and cheese, bowls, ice cream. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. 

Regarding drinks – an integral part of a hot dog meal – now, instead of going next door to Tick Tock Tavern for your beer or cocktail, you can get one inside Steve’s – they have a full bar. In addition to an all-local beer list and a primarily local spirit list, they’ll have around 10 signature cocktails. “We have a killer margarita. We’re going to be doing sangria daily,” Ewing said. They’ll also offer a daily happy hour menu and drinks to go.  

Though he’s moving barely half a mile away, Ewing said he’s going to have to get used to the new neighborhood. “I’ll miss the regular walkers, the people who came in every day,” he said wistfully. “But I feel like they will come here too.” With all the foot traffic from the other South Grand bars, eateries and shops, Ewing plans to stay open later. 

On that note, learn more about Steve’s Hot Dogs’ new hours, space and more in the slideshow below.