« December 2004 | Main | March 2005 »

February 07, 2005

Best. Sausages. Ever.

This blog is mostly devoted to travel writing. But in the spirit of sharing, I'll also write about noteworthy restaurants and experiences in Chicago.

I've never been a lover of sausages. Always preferred my meats unencased. But that's before lunching at Hot Doug's (3324 North California, Chicago) this past weekend. If you had told me that I would wait in a line that stretches out the door for the privilege of eating a sausage, I would have assumed you didn't know me very well. The line could have been longer and I still wouldn't have minded. This isn't an ordinary sausage and hot dog stand. Doug, who takes your order and money, cracking jokes all the time, is a trained chef. Hot Doug's has been written up in lots of papers, including the New York Times. It has a Zagat's rating of 24, which is pretty high for a place that uses paper napkins.

And the offerings, besides the traditional hot dog, bratwurst, polish, include the exotic. I particularly enjoyed my lamb sausage with feta cheese and sundried tomato relish, choosing that one over a rabbit sausage with a truffle sauce. The fries are pretty incredible and the reason many people come to Hot Doug's in the first place. On Fridays and Saturdays, they offer fries cooked in duck fat. It may sound strange, but you can't taste the duck fat per se. All I know is that they were incredibly addicting. Hot Doug's is only open for lunch, and it's not near, well, anything. It's definitely worth the trip.