Ben's Chili Bowl

  • Restaurants & Nightlife
GDS Connection: Kamal Ali '80; parent of Suraya '18

On August 22, 1958, Ben’s Chili Bowl opened for business. The street (U Street) was then known nationally as “Black Broadway” and Washington D.C. was still segregated. But all were always welcome at Ben’s. From the burning and looting of the 1968 race riots to the tough times in the 70’s and 80’s and finally to the revitalization of the U Street Corridor beginning in the 90’s, Ben’s has seen and survived it all. The one constant we’ve had since 1958 has been the loyalty of our customers, and we listened when you said, "whatever you do, never change this place." The counter, booths and stools are all original; the fresh homemade chili is still made with love, using the same secret recipe, and service and quality are guiding principles. To our customers and especially our regulars, we appreciate you and thank you for supporting Ben's. To those reading this that have yet to come to Ben's, we look forward to seeing you very soon!

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