Heinz repackages ketchup as ‘Chicago Dog Sauce’ for National Hot Dog Day

The brand offered the city’s residents the chance to don their frankfurters with the red condiment that they have adamantly shunned. Consumers’ reactions was mixed.

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Any Chicago native worth their (celery) salt knows that ketchup belongs nowhere on a hot dog.

In a 1995 column, Chicago writer Mike Royko castigated former senator Carol Moseley-Braun for an offense so abominable he wrote, “It is said that power corrupts. I didn’t know that it brings on utter madness.”

Moseley-Braun’s offense was a contribution to a recipe book by the American Meat Institute for a Chicago hot dog (which is not a sandwich) that gallingly included ketchup.

There are several theories as to why ketchup and Chicago hot dogs don’t mix, but the story I heard growing up in the city was that, ketchup used to be considered fancy. Hot dogs were the working man’s food, and mustard was the working man’s condiment.

For a company such as Heinz, this presents a challenge.

Plenty of Chicago consumers don their dogs with the red condiment, but how could they win the hearts and minds of true, no-ketchup city residents?

That’s where Chicago Dog Sauce comes in.

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