Hard Times Cafe is a local chain dishing up chili dishes, wings & burgers in a simple setting with flat-screen TVs. It is located at 1404 King St, Alexandria, VA. It serves nationally acclaimed Texas, Cincinnati, and vegetarian chili, plus burgers, sandwiches, and salads along with a large selection of microbrewed beers.
As per blog.visitalexandriava.com, “Hard Times’ Texas Chili recipe comes down to Fred from his grandfather, a trail-driving cowboy in Oklahoma in the 1890s. Fred’s Aunt Irma preserved the recipe and passed it on to her nephews; the original copy in Irma’s handwriting lives in a safety deposit box. Fred’s other recipes are the result of research, experimentation, and competition chili cooking, which Jim excelled at. When I ask Fred if he has a favorite chili, he says, “Texas Chili—it’s family.” Some menu items, however, like the chili taters, Frito chili pie, and Chili Bubba (two pieces of cornbread smothered with two types of chili), were not inherited—they’re just strokes of genius.”
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