Tag Archives: Rail Road Park

The Passing of a Living Institution in the ‘ham

About three weeks ago we had our first glimpse of Spring. It just happened to come on a beautiful Saturday and the family and I knew what we had to do.  We loaded up to car and headed downtown to Pete’s Famous Hot Dogs, a Birmingham institution since 1948.  Pete’s is essentially a closet downtown where the best hot dogs in the city are made!  Pete’s proprietor Constantine, who goes by Gus (try to figure that one out), is just as recognizable as the Famous sign that marks this staple.  Remember the soup nazi from Seinfield?  Well Gus is Birmingham’s hot dog nazi.  Let me pause and make sure that you know this is no cut on Gus, it is as much a part of the DNA of this place as the sign or the tile floor, it is a necessary part of the Pete’s experience.

That is Gus hunched over the grill in the bottom right corner

So I walk in, nervous, not wanting to screw up the order, not talk too much, not make eye contact, but not look sheepish.  Purposeful and humble, my plan is to rattle out my order, the one I had practiced about 10 times, no joke, smile and pay for my food.  Good plan right?  Nope. Continue reading


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