Long before U Street became hip, Ben's was serving chili. Chili on hot dogs, chili on Polish-style sausages, chili on burgers, and just plain chili. Add cheese fries if you dare. The shiny red-vinyl stools give the impression that little has changed since the 1950s, but don't be fooled—this favorite of President Obama and his aides has rocketed into the 21st century with renewable energy powering its new iPhone app and kiosks at Nationals baseball games. Turkey burgers
and meatless chili are the menu's more upscale nods to modern times. Ben's closes at 2 am Monday through Thursday, at 4 am on Friday and Saturday. It serves no breakfast on Sunday but stays open until 11 pm. Southern-style breakfast is served from 6 am weekdays and from 7 am on Saturday.