Try the Locally Famous Chili at Hard Times Cafe

Since 1980 Alexandria locals have been sharing meals with friends and family at the very first Hard Times Cafe location. Since then, Hard Times Cafe has expanded throughout the region, but regulars say that nothing beats a meal at the original.

The kitchen’s award-winning chili is perhaps the most famous item on the menu, and is made with recipes dating back to the 19th century. Order yours Texas-style if you prefer your chili spicy, or go for Cincinnati-style chili for a sweeter and milder version.

The restaurant also offers a series of daily specials that make it easy to frequent this place without breaking the bank. On Monday you’ll get burgers and fries for less than eight bucks, while Tuesdays mean the kitchen is serving up chili mac and cheese throughout the lunch hour. Wednesdays and Thursdays are reserved for hot wings (boneless or bone-in), while Fridays are Nacho Day.