HOME > Chowhound > Chicago Area >
What's your latest food quest? Tell us about it
TELL US

Remember eating at Woolworth's or Kreske's downtown?

k
KAD Apr 13, 2002 10:44 PM

Remember when you use to take a trip downtown with a parent and you thought it was neat to eat at Woolworth's on State St. or Kreske's cafe. They all had small eating areas in the store that basically had burgers, hot dogs and B.L.T.'s. When I was a kid I thought it was great eating there! I remember one Woolworth that the restaurant was upstairs and you looked down at the shoppers. It was a treat to a lot of kids back in the 60's.

  1. m
    Madd Apr 18, 2002 02:14 PM

    And How - In Royal Oak, A Detroit burb, in the 60s and 70s. We had a Kresge in town and ALWAYS ate at the lunch counter - I remember cokes in that aluminum or steel contraption that held a paper cone - and paper straws! Kresge had the best burger and fries in the area - McDonald's was just a gleam in Ray Kroc's eye.

    Neisner's was across the street and they served cokes in those tall soda fountain glasses, but it was dark and gloomy (read suspect) and Kresge's had "modren-ized". There was no Woolworth in walking distance and no public trans, but occasionally we went to one at the Mall. The thing I remember most about Woolworth was the hot dog buns - they were sliced from the top down rather than across the middle, and they seemed more like eating a hot dog at home wrapped in a slice of Wonder bread because there were no buns left.

    1. r
      RSMBob Apr 18, 2002 02:14 AM

      Being a suburban kid (Downers Grove), I used to look forward to spending some summer nights at my Great Aunt Martha's house (on School St near Belmont and Central).

      The highlight of my visits would be the trip downtown, taking the bus to Logan Square, and then the "L"/subway into the Loop to do some shopping along State Street and have lunch at Woolworth's. A grilled cheese with the crust cut off, some french fries and a chocolate milk and I was in heaven. Come to think of it, that's still an awfully darn good lunch!

      If I was really good, Aunt Martha would take me for a ride on on of the other "L" lines before we headed back to her house.

      1. p
        Paulette Apr 16, 2002 10:46 AM

        Woolworth's continued their restaurants or lunch counters as they were known into the 90's. The city cited them a few times and did shut them down for a time during this time. When Woolworths closed so when the lunch counter.

        All Woolworth's had lunch counters and I remember taking VI to the one on Devon and Western when he was a baby. Not a very good beginning for the foody he became but it was cheap and a allowed buggys. It was the place for a hot dog cooked on that spiked rotating thing or a grilled cheese sandwich. Food wasn't bad just cheap quick and friendly as were lunch counters all over.

        1. l
          Lady T Apr 15, 2002 06:49 PM

          Good Lord, YES! Back in the late Seventies and even early Eighties, I used to go for my lunch hour to the Woolworth's on State Street just south of Adams once a week or so. This was whenever they had my favorite macaroni and cheese...this was a glorious, gooey, cheese-heavy, brown-at-the-edges concoction they served for not much money and as much time as I needed to sit quietly, read, and detox from working downtown.

          In addition to the attraction(s) of the cafeteria, they sold all manner of notions and tchotchkes; the pet department in the basement would have given the PETA people fits, but I'd bet a whole lot of downtown workers' kids got their first goldfish/parakeets/hamsters from that source. The supplies for those pets were dirt cheap, too.

          Man, I miss that place!

          8 Replies
          1. re: Lady T
            e
            El Panzone Apr 29, 2002 10:04 AM

            i liked wimpy's too. blieve it or not, even small towns
            had walgreen's and kresge's counter's. Hojo's too, with the toasted hot dog bun and A&W and henry's and
            burger king and ...

            1. re: El Panzone
              k
              KAD Apr 30, 2002 10:46 AM

              Whatever happened to Wimpy's downtown? Do you remember any of there former locations? I even remember a Wimpy's at Woodfield Mall when it openened.

              1. re: KAD
                z
                zim Apr 30, 2002 11:15 AM

                Hey kad,

                you asked this before-see attached link

                Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

                1. re: zim
                  k
                  KAD Apr 30, 2002 11:01 PM

                  I am bringing the attention to El Pazzone. So I wrote it again!!!!

                  1. re: KAD
                    z
                    zim May 1, 2002 12:32 PM

                    Hey kad,

                    I'm not trying to start a flame war, just trying to be helpful.

                    Maybe you could just attach a link to the earlier discussion as i did?

                    to do so, just copy the url into the box at the bottom of the posting form and give it a title (like "more discussion of wimpys")

                    1. re: zim
                      k
                      KAD May 1, 2002 10:14 PM

                      Good reply Zim, I will use your advice in future messages, it was a misunderstanding. Thanks, KAD

                  2. re: zim
                    k
                    KAD Apr 30, 2002 11:22 PM

                    Your telling me about and setting an example that I have talked about Wimpy's before. How about the same Chowhounds talking about Gene and Judes, Johnnies Beef (Which is way overated by the way), Leonas, time and time again, and many more restaurants people tend to talk about over and over again.

                    1. re: KAD
                      z
                      zim May 1, 2002 09:07 AM

                      KAD,

                      I do think it is ok to repeat a little bit, to see if a restaurant is staying up to snuff, has a new menu, etc. Also, if for example a thread comes up like "your favorite restaurants", of course you may add ones you've spoken about

                      However, how much change is a defunct restaurant gonna undergo? It's would be different if what you were talking about wimpy's was it's best hamburger or that they made fries a certain way.

                      Also, since you had seemed to have forgotten your post -I was reminding you of others answers in the past.

            Show Hidden Posts