Uncle Franky’s moves into Dinkytown

If students are looking for a taste of Chicago, they can stop in to the newest Dinkytown restaurant. Uncle FrankyâÄôs officially opened Tuesday and offers classic Vienna Beef hot dogs in addition to other menu items. The restaurant is located in the back of the Dinkydale Mall , a former home to other popular restaurants. Most recently, Chowgirls Killer Catering moved out and into a new location downtown, and student-frequented Burrito Loco started there as well. âÄúThat was a good start for them and when the opportunity came to expand they took it,âÄù Dinkytown Business Association President Skott Johnson said. AnnieâÄôs Parlour owner John Rimarcik , who currently owns 12 restaurants, said he formerly owned PumpernikâÄôs in the same spot before opening AnnieâÄôs. But Uncle FrankyâÄôs picked an optimal time to open with Homecoming activities all week. Owner Norb Domek said they plan on handing out soda jerk hats in front of the store Saturday that say, âÄúRelish your wiener! Use a condiment.âÄù Domek and his brother, Larry Domek, own the newly opened shop, which they said will bring a Chicago feel to Dinkytown âÄî even if that feeling is a bit harsh. âÄúDepending on the time and day and once we establish ourselves, we will have no problem telling someone to step out of line if they donâÄôt know what they want,âÄù Norb Domek said. He said yelling is common in Chicago hot dog restaurants, and they will not be afraid to yell at someone for breaking classic rules, such as putting ketchup on their Chicago dog. In fact, they plan on putting a Vienna Beef poster in the restaurant that says, âÄúThis dog is rated NK-17 (No ketchup unless under the age of 17). The location appealed to them because it reminded them of the Billy Goat Tavern , a Chicago restaurant made infamous by a John Belushi skit on Saturday Night Live , Larry Domek said. The Dinkytown shop is the third Uncle FrankyâÄôs, with others in Northeast Minneapolis and Plymouth, Minn. The restaurant also offers burgers, vegetarian options, salmon burgers and malts. âÄúWeâÄôll go head-to-head with AnnieâÄôs malts any day,âÄù Norb Domek said. But AnnieâÄôs manager Barbara Thomsen said she is not worried about a new restaurant moving nearby with a similar menu. âÄúThe competition is great,âÄù she said. âÄúWe had a huge lunch today, so I think the impact is going to be probably minimal. We have a reputation.âÄù While other businesses offer similar food, Johnson expects Uncle FrankyâÄôs to be successful because it has a niche feel. âÄúItâÄôs a good fit for this area,âÄù he said. âÄúThe prices are agreeable to students and this area.âÄù The new restaurant will also try to capture the late-night market by staying open after bar close this weekend, and Norb Domek said they will adjust their hours to the demands of customers as they settle in. Speech, language and hearing sciences senior Jessica Sekhon said she came in for the first time Wednesday, and the restaurant will become one of her frequent food spots. She said she has had trouble finding all-beef hot dogs. âÄúYou know how thereâÄôs this huge crowd in front of Mesa [Pizza] usually late at night? I think part of that crowd will start coming over here,âÄù she said. âÄúThey just need to advertise more. People will go anywhere where thereâÄôs late night food.âÄù