The Campus Town area at Marquette University has a new tenant, one already familiar to East Siders: the Dogg Haus. The Brady Street staple, and Chicago-style hot dog vendor, will open its second location for business as early as tomorrow and there’s already a buzz surrounding its addition.
Dogg Haus has taken over the location vacated by coffee shop and restaurant the Eagles Café on the corner of 17th and Wells Streets.
“There’s really not another tenant where their sole food item is hot dogs,” says Mike Whittow, Marquette assistant to the vice president of administration and vice president of Hilltop Enterprises which takes care of the retail properties on campus. “We’re very optimistic and happy (Dogg Haus) has chosen to come here.”
Whittow says that Dogg Haus owner Mazen Muna sought out the location on Marquette’s campus for a few reasons, including the high number of Chicago transplants. Muna agrees because he says that Vienna hot dogs are a staple in Chicago and he sells his product using a need-based approach.
“The reason I chose the Marquette campus was due to the fact the amount of Marquette students that started to hear about the location on Brady St.,” says Muna. “The number of people leaving campus to come to Brady Street was high and ... it’s not that close for a Marquette student.”
But he says another driving factor was that Marquette’s food options are limited unlike the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on the East Side. Some students agree with the statement, but are a bit wary.
“I do like Chicago style hot dogs, but I’m hoping to see something a little more different from the sub shops,” says Bridget Thoreson, a senior in the College of Communication. “I’m glad there’s another good place on campus. It would be nice to have more options than meat on bread for a quick lunch on campus though.”
Sophomore Laura Ferrari, a student in the College of Business, says that much of the Dogg Haus’ success will have to do with how established it becomes, otherwise it will fail.
“For some reason, that corner is not a good place to have a restaurant. The hub of campus is farther east. The problem is that nothing has been established there such as Papa John's and Angelo's,” she says. “No one knows that it's a good place to get a decent hot dog or brat, though. Students know what to expect from Papa John's or Jimmy John's. Those restaurants have been on campus so long that their reputation is established.”
She also says that people need to take into account the luck past businesses have had in that location as well.
Curiosity seems to rule overall, though.
“I actually think it's a great addition to Marquette's campus and am excited for it to open. It has a good reputation from others who have been to a Dogg Haus, so I'm anxious to try it,” says Justine Siepmann, a senior in the College of Health Sciences. “It also brings a new variety of food to campus.”
Price also plays into how the college students will react. Keeley Kerrins, a junior in the College of Communication, says that she used to enjoy the Eagles Café, but it was expensive. She also says that that area is known for its business in the late hours.
Muna has already thought about the possibility of bar traffic, since there are two college bars on that block and he says that the location is similar to Brady Street in that sense, since there are more than a few bars around his first location.
For now, the new Dogg Haus will be playing hours by ear he says. He expects Monday through Wednesday to be open 11 a.m. until 11 p.m., Thursday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 3 a.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., or possibly later.
He’s also considered branching off into new locations based on the success of Brady Street’s Dogg Haus, which has been open for a year and four months.
“Brady street has been very successful and (Muna is) a very good small business owner and we’re glad to have him,” Whittow says.
Kerrins says that she hopes that the Dogg Haus succeeds at 17th and Wells and maybe this will convince other restaurants to make the move to Marquette’s campus.
Originally from Des Plaines, Ill., Heather moved to Milwaukee to earn a B.A. in journalism from Marquette University. With a tongue-twisting last name like Leszczewicz, it's best to go into a career where people don't need to say your name often.
However, she's still sticking to some of her Illinoisan ways (she won't reform when it comes to things like pop, water fountain or ATM), though she's grown to enjoy her time in the Brew City.
Although her journalism career is still budding, Heather has had the chance for some once-in-a-lifetime interviews with celebrities like actor Vince Vaughn and actress Charlize Theron, director Cameron Crowe and singers Ben Kweller and Isaac Hanson of '90s brother boy band Hanson.
Heather's a self-proclaimed workaholic but loves her entertainment. She's a real television and movie fanatic, book nerd, music junkie, coffee addict and pop culture aficionado.