Encased meat Mecca
Sausage lovers must check out Hot Doug's. Located on Roscoe 1 block east of Western on the north side of the street. Owner Doug, sausage fanatic with a culinary degree, offers an array of some of the most badass links I've found in Chicago. In addition to the perfectly executed Chicago-style dog and the Polish (carmelized onions on request) there are a dozen other offerings on the menu and daily sausage specials. The brat is done right. Tried some tasty game sausages like the Jamaican venison and the "Mountain Man" (a blend of elk, antelope, venison, and musk ox). Had the blood sausage special 2 days in a row (fantastic- Spanish morcilla style). It's a bargain too- most menu items are around $2 and the specials hover around $4. Fresh cut fries AND Doug says that each Saturday, starting the 14th (appropriately Bastille Day), he's got a fryer designated for fries cooked in DUCK FAT! I am so there.
Hours: Closed Sunday and at 4 PM Mon-Sat, open til 8 Thurs and Fri.
I was so there too (literally, on Saturday). Unfortunately the duck fat thing didn't work out. Apparently a different type of potato will be necessary so Doug put the project on hold. Maybe next week.
I took my duck fat in a different form: a duck sausage with foie gras on a good roll with Dijon mustard and carmelized onions (a Bastille Day special, $5). Also tried the fries which, even without the duck fat, were awfully good.
It's a great little place. I mean how many hot dog stands have a small library devoted to sausage literature? There's lots of interesting stuff on the walls (Elvis and Rick Reuschel figure prominently). One of my favorites was a list of German sausage expressions. Here's the link:
I was thinking the same thing re: LLS, the Reader, and Hot Doug's.
I also find it interesting that the interview on WBEZ with the owner of La Cumbamba appeared after mention of it here.
I suspect there are lurkers from the press (hell, if I were press I'd be looking here too, and why not?), and perhaps our influence might be somewhat greater than we think.
(*begin evil sorcerer laugh*) BWA-HA-HA-HA-HA!!!!!
Ah ha... that strange feeling that someone's been watching me has now been justifed. However on this particular subject I have to admit that the press (City Talk), initially led me to Hot Doug's.
So, how do you feel about clueing in the media and then consequently the hordes? Last Saturday Hot Doug's was jumping. I told him it was great to see him so busy, but not to get TOO busy. Doug is a top notch guy, the chow is hyperdelicious, and his place deserves to kick ass. As long as he doesn't run out of the daily sausage special and I can get a reservation for four on a busy Saturday night, I'm happy to tip the press off.