Pittsburgh Willy's

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Merchant Square Antique Marketplace
1509 N. Arizona Avenue, Chandler

Known to his friends as Pittsburgh Willy, Randy Walters operated a hot dog stand in Chandler for two years, just as his father had done in pre-WWII Pittsburgh. Now he's moved his business indoors, operating from a tiny kitchen and dining nook within an antique mall. Nearly every inch of wall space glorifies the Pittsburgh Steelers. Any room left over is devoted to good-natured jokes such as "we're not slow; you're just impatient." Although the setting may not inspire much confidence, there's no denying that PW's quarter-pound, all-beef, kosher hot dogs from Nathan's are first-rate -- especially when they're jazzed up with crazy toppings. Scrumpdilly-icious options include your basic chili dog (lavished with homemade chili and cheddar cheese), the Red, White and Bleu (topped with roasted red peppers, chunks of blue cheese and blue cheese dressing), the Greek (topped with kalamatas, sundried tomatoes and feta), the Chicken Willy (chicken sausage with spinach and asiago cheese) and my favorite, the Wild Willy (topped with butter-drenched chipped ham and melted cheddar). When heartburn and calories are no object, try the Blitzburgh -- potato and cheese-stuffed pierogi, topped with sauerkraut, caramelized onions, chili, melted cheddar and sliced kielbasa. Ridiculous! Both the Blitzburgh and pierogi with butter and onions are offered Wednesday nights as well as all day Saturday and Sunday (as long as they last, that is). For dessert, an ice cream bar topped with whipped cream, sliced bananas, maraschino cherries and chocolate syrup puts you right over the top. So walk off a few calories browsing the antiques. Pittsburgh Willy's closes by mid-afternoon every day except Wednesday, when it stays open until 7 p.m. $