Let’s go for a Coney
What’s a “Coney”, I said? It seems most people here know that a “Coney” is a grilled, natural casing hot dog in a bun, topped with Chili, diced onion and mustard. There are hundreds of Coney Island restaurants here in Michigan. The restaurants can also be found in New York, Ohio, Idiana, Minnesota, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and Texas.
Of course, I was familiar with the term “Coney Island” but, as a place. Most Americans grew up with the knowledge of the famous “Coney Island”, located in Brooklyn, New York, its boardwalk and its large amusement park as seen in many Hollywood films. What I did not know however, is that this area of New York is where many Greek and Macedonian immigrants settled down to start anew. Apparently, they are responsible for the original creation of the “Coney Dog” that we know today. As with many who have come through Ellis Island, their march West soon followed.
Bill and Gus Keros, Greek immigrants established their restaurant in downtown Detroit in 1914. But, after a dispute between them in 1917, they split the restaurant in half and today the restaurants still stand side by side as “American Coney Island” and “Lafayette Coney Island”. Since that time the menu of the “Coney Island” restaurants have expanded to include a “loose hamburger” (meat patty crumbled in a bun), chili cheese fries, gyros, Greek salads, rice pudding and beverages. Each restaurant has its own “original” recipe for the chili sauce of which, some sauces use to contain ground beef heart and four or five different spices. People have been known to travel from afar to partake in the enjoyment of a “Coney”.
AUTHOR: SHARON SMITH
Sharon Smith was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest (USA) and owned a healthcare uniform business for many years. She also lived in Japan but presently resides in Michigan. She blogs about her experiences and observations touching on culture, lifestyle, and the people around her.