Coney Cuisine Capital of the Great Northwest!


Whenever I visit my hometown, my first stop after the airport is either Coney Island, McKellar’s Confectionery or the aptly named Thunder Bay Restaurant. You see, there’s this thing Thunder Bay has about coney sauce. Anything you order can be served with a huge helping of gravy, and yes, they pour it all over the burger too, in fact, over everything on your plate. And the burgers and hotdogs always have the most delicious coney sauce, ever! Locals love to debate which place has the best. You can even buy it in jars at the local farmers markets.

ianphillipsillustration-coneymap-framed
There’s nothing like it anywhere. Some of the confectioneries drawn on the map still have lunch counters and serve french fries in paper bags! The best!

Here’s a close-up of the part of town I lived in:

THUNDER BAY sliders colouring

I’ve only included places that are still in business. The places I frequented as a kid are long gone

Note the portrait of Gus Kelos on the wall, by Thunder Bay artist Ray Swaluk. Gus would balance dogs on his arm as he readied them for customers

Inside the McKellar Conf. Note the portrait of Gus Kelos on the wall, by Thunder Bay artist Ray Swaluk. Gus would balance dogs on his arm as he readied them for customers. Legendary!

Westfort essentials

Westfort essentials: Coney Island and The Salsbury Grill. What I remember most about Coney Island is their phone number – it was almost the same as my parents. We frequently received calls!

Merla Mae is another favourite!

Merla Mae is another favourite!

Thunder Bay’s cuisine is not limited to this coney stuff, either. I’ve done a lot of work based on the other local delicacy, the persian:

THUNDER BAY PERSIANS MAP

I have many more projects about my home town in the works!

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About Ian Phillips Illustration

I am an illustrator and book designer. View all posts by Ian Phillips Illustration

3 responses to “Coney Cuisine Capital of the Great Northwest!

  • norman shapiro

    I appreciate seeing your current work. Most of my current time is spent drawing. Among the many rules I break as a book artist is using store bought books. I find the Strathmore sketch books I get at the local ‘Michaels’ stores very usable. At the turn of the millennium I’ve accumulated something like 30. Some have wound up at the Center for Book Art in Manhattan and the Slip Museum. Later this month I’ll be giving a workshop entitled ‘Learning How To Learn It is ‘ hands-on’.

  • Photobooth Journal

    I’ve seen all the post I’ve just liked previously. Not sure why I didn’t like them sooner!!! Merry Xmas!

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