-In Chicago: Every Dog Has it's Day
In the land of the hot dog, the number of places that push them can come a dime a dozen. However just because a place serves up a hot dog doesn't mean its anything worth trying, especially in Chicago. I mean 7-11 sells hot dogs, you gotta pick and choose when it comes to eating the hot dogs of Chicago. It's not that hard to find the popular joints and the best ones are the spots that have been around and have unique looks to them and you'll usually see people walking in and out with brown bags and drinks in their hands. The best places not only serve great red hots but also have great character like you would expect to find at classic roadfood establishments. Enter Odge's at the corner of Damen and Superior in West Town.
Odge's Old Fashioned Red Hots
A familiar spot along Damen ave.
I always loved driving by Odge's as a kid and seeing the bright colors and painted drawings of food and items served on the menu. I've also been eating here since my youth and have always enjoyed the dogs when in the area. Its not just the outside that's different at Odge's because the inside is just as quirky. The walls are filled with 50's memorabilia and old school collectible items and its one of the best dining areas of any hot dog place in the city. More times than not you'll find Odge himself making the homemade chili or dressing hot dogs for his customers. Its been that way going on four decades now. You can also add a tamale to your chili for a dollar extra and along with a hot dog you'd be eating an old timer's Chicago style lunch. The chili is ehh but it can be satisfying with a tamale thrown in during the wintertime.
The rest of the menu is your typical Chicago fare with hot dogs being the most popular item. They come dressed with pickles, onions and mustard and relish. The fries are just ok but its a good hot dog and a favorite of many. Another little thing I like about Odge's is they have bunch tamales which isn't anything special but more on that another time. I wouldn't head out of my way for Odge's but should you live or be moving to the West Town neighborhood then Odge's will be your hot dog joint. Its another time honored Chicago hot dog stand establishment.
Odge's Red Hot
Ody's Drive Inn
A familiar spot along Grand ave
I found Ody's cruising down grand ave one night and it caught my eye. Over near the Brickyard Shopping Center and the Belmont Cragin neighborhood there's a hot dog stand on every block or so it seems. According to there website, Ody's was built from the ground up in 2008 and they "are proud to serve delicious fast food at affordable prices" I did learn just now as I write this, that it is owned by the same guy who owns White Palace and Hollywood Grill. Its also open 24 hours and has plenty of parking in their lot and a outdoor patio that is enclosed and warm in winter. Its basically another one of the many Maxwell Street type establishments trying to be like the real McCoy's. Its not like the real ones but its good for what it is and that's quick fast food. The burger was a fresh Vienna beef patty, nothing special, but also not bad. The dogs are nice and the fries were made fresh and came out well fried. Not a bad option at 2a if in the area.
2am cheeseburger from Ody's
Hot Dog (everything includes mustard, onions, relish, sport peppers) and Fresh Cut Fries
730 North Damen Avenue
Chicago, IL 60622-5517
Ody's Drive Inn
6001 West Grand Avenue
Chicago, IL 60639-2718