Steve's Hot Dogs and Burgers making a comeback in Tower Grove East

We thought it was closed forever -- but new investors and longtime fans didn't seem to like that.

Alex Degman
February 21, 2020 - 9:55 pm

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) -- It's no secret the local restaurant business is tough. Cutthroat, even, with small profit margins and a struggle to compete with national chains that offer lower prices and more locations among other challenges.

Steve's Hot Dogs and Burgers thought it was going to be another local restaurant to close, announcing in late January the original Tower Grove East location was going out of business -- it told fans on social media a week before it happened.

"We were just gonna sling food as much as we could," said owner and local musician Steve Ewing, who opened Steve's Hot Dogs 11 years ago. 

He couldn't have predicted what happened next.

"The response was... ten times more than what we thought we would get."

Investors came in to help clear out some old debt, and throughout that "final" week customers just kept coming -- many of them Ewing had known since they were kids.

"After a week of talking with everyone, with all the customers, and seeing all the kids that kind of grew up in the shop, that let me know that it's really something that should stick around," Ewing told KMOX.

The Hill location will remain closed, but the Tower Grove East shop on Magnolia just east of Grand will reopen Wednesday, February 26th for dinner. Ewing says they did pretty well when they focused on dinner, so that's going to be their lane for now.

There will be some menu changes -- he'll be adding a couple of classic dogs to the menu and, yes, some things will be going away.

"They're not the staples, so most people won't miss those things."

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