While recently in Evanston, I stopped by the world famous "Mustard's Last Stand". Located near Ryan Field on the Northwestern Campus, this institution is a popular spot before and after the game.
Mustard's has been in business for about 40 years and is located in a small unassuming building that looks like it was originally a house. They are even a featured question in Trivial Pursuit ("What's the specialty in an Evanston, Illinois, eatery called "Mustard's Last Stand?").
From the moment I entered, I could sense I was in for a special experience. The ambiance at Mustard's Last Stand is unbelievable. Without even tasting their food, I already loved this place and knew I would not leave disappointed.
You could spend all day looking at the photos, letters and other memorabilia on the walls which highlight their rich history. Everything from sports magazine covers, signed celebrity photos, Northwestern related items and even some tennis rackets adorn the walls.
The place is so small, there is no room for tables/chairs. Shelf seating, complete with round Vienna stools, is available along one of the walls. If you can't get a seat inside, there are tables outside with Vienna umbrellas to keep you out of the sun.
For the last 20 years, Keith has been serving up the food. Keith is probably as much an institution as Mustard's itself. Since they were not too busy when I visited, Keith and I had a great philosophical discussion about hot dogs and also discussed the controversy of adding ketchup. Although Keith does not agree with putting ketchup on a dog, he said he will because he wants the customer to enjoy it. Keith also stated that 80% of people in Evanston put ketchup on their hot dog. I also learned that the owners had originally planned on opening this location as a pizzeria.
I ordered my Chicago Dog and Keith quickly created it. Their Vienna beef dog is served on a steamed S. Rosen's poppy seed bun. The application of the yellow mustard appeared to be heavy, but I think that the dog got slightly crushed when wrapped up and caused it to ooze. The relish tasted good, but I was slightly disappointed that it was not neon green. The onions were finely chopped and the dog was stocked with some nice tomatoes. There were 2 extremely small sport peppers...I would have preferred some larger ones. If there was any celery salt, it was applied so light I couldn't even tell it was there.
Overall, the Chicago Dog was great and I was already craving another before finishing the first (always a good sign). In our opinion, Mustard's Last Stand should not be overlooked. Give the place a try...you will NOT be disappointed.
Besides their Chicago Style Dogs, another favorite is their double cheeseburger. I have also heard that they serve some great shakes and malts.