Flashback Friday: Bishop's Chili

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By Historical Society

Remember Bishop's Chili, a successful Chicago restaurant opened by Mary "Ma" Bishop in the 1920's on 18th and Damon?

Her son, George branched off and continued the family business by opening a second location to the west in Forest Park at the intersection of Roosevelt and Elgin in the 1950's. 

Joe Janouch, Vice President of Bishop's was interviewed in 1992 and said, "I think some of our success comes from the fact that we've kept this a family business and we've stuck to one recipe all these years."

Janouch was careful not to reveal the secret mixture that gave Bishop's chili its spicy kick.

He only shared that the secret recipe included meat, beans, onions and spices. The chili does not include tomato paste, flour or brown sugar.

This favorite restaurant on the south end of town expanded west again in 1970's to Westmont. 

In the early 1990s, Bishop's Chili, after 36 years in Forest Park, was demolished to make way for Walgreens, now at the corner of Roosevelt and Harlem, which fills the corner all the way to Elgin.

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Bill Dwyer  

Posted: October 12th, 2018 9:33 PM

Bishop's Chili is now on Cass Avenue in downtown Westmont.

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