New Restaurant Alert

Detroit Coney Grill in Tempe to Open Friday

After a long wait -- perhaps a little too long for Michigan transplants -- Detroit Coney Grill, the Motor City-minded hot dog joint in Tempe, will open at 11 a.m. this Friday, August 30.

Courtesy of Michigan native David Najor, who spent years working for his family's grocery stores in Detroit before moving to the Valley in 2011, Detroit Coney Grill -- along with the coneys -- will also serve customizable burgers and hand-cut fries smothered in chili and cheese.

"I used to have coneys brought in from Detroit to the Windy City Cafe [Najor's first restaurant in Tempe, which he sold in January]," Najor says. "But I always wanted to do a coney place. There just aren't a lot here."

True dat. Here's what coney hounds can expect.

See also: The Gladly, From the Owners of Citizen Public House, Opens This Saturday in Phoenix

Armed with Detroit-based ingredients and products (think Faygo and Better Made Potato Chips), Najor says he's keeping the eats as authentic as possible -- like all-beef natural casing dogs, scratch-made burgers, and hand-cut Idaho russet potatoes. And his chili sauce, made with cayenne pepper, chili powder, garlic, seasonings, and spices, is a signature recipe (Najor's a fan of the famous Lafayette Coney Island in Detroit).

For burgers, Najor's going old school. Like Krazy Jim's Blimpy Burger in Ann Arbor, Michigan (and The Chuckbox in Tempe, sans the charcoal grill), customers will be able to order up their burgers cafeteria-style -- across from the person doing the cooking -- and can customize them however they wish.

Najor tells me he's been surprised by the number of people who have found his coney joint's Facebook page before the restaurant has even opened.

"There's been a lot of excitement," he tells me. "I'm as anxious as they are."

Najor's already secured a lease on a second location for a Detroit Coney Grill -- at 35th Avenue and Bell Road.

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Laura Hahnefeld
Contact: Laura Hahnefeld