You pretty much need to have eaten at Frank and The Cubans to know about it. That or you need to have been driving down Western and were able to quickly spot the Vienna Beef signing announcing it's presence at the corner of 16th and Western. It's a permanent food cart sitting in a parking lot.
Newly Opened at 16th and Western
First off, I love the name. This is a classic Chicago style hot dog stand. In fact the owner grew up selling hot dogs out of a cart in a city park. Even though it's just a stand the menu has more than just hot dogs. A closer look reveals where the Cuban part in the stands name comes from. It's first listed.
The Menu (click pics to enhance)
More on that in a minute. First off we try a hot dog. First thing I noticed is they mention the fact they serve a natural casing wiener. Next thing I notice is they store them in a ceramic holder which is what all the old pros do. Then and there I new these guys knew what was up. You can get a Chicago dog with a side of free standard frozen fries for just $4 and that includes tax. It's a perfectly made hot dog.
Chicago Dog at Frank and the Cubans
Then there's the Cuban. As regular readers know I take these very seriously. Most Cuban's outside of Florida (Tampa and Miami) are garbage for a variety of reasons. However as I've written about before you can achieve a classic Cuban sandwich at home if you're willing to hunt down the proper ingredients. I'm happy to report they take the necessary steps here to do so. Chicago style French bread works really well and they use that while making the pork on site. All of this perfectness can be wiped out if you don't properly balance the sandwich which is not a problem here. Each sandwich comes with an order of fresh fried plantain chips which are delicious. I've ate many Cubans across the city but none were made with as much care. My new go-to spot when I'm in the mood for one.
Cuban Sandwich at Frank and The Cubans
Frank and The Cubans
2444 W 16th St
Chicago, IL 60608