Monday, August 13, 2012

Franks n' Dawgs

-In Chicago: Every Dog Has it's Day

Today we walk over to Clybourn avenue to check out one of Chicago's famous artisan sausage shops. Franks N' Dawgs burst onto the scene a couple years back offering "five star dining on a bun". This certainly wasn't anything new to the scene as Hot Doug's was the first place to bring hot dogs to another level. However those that have been to both realize that each place has it's own unique signature touches they put on their array's of encased meat offered.

Located on Clybourn in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood

The people behind Franks N' Dawgs have some sincere passion and quite frankly it's as much as I've seen from anyplace. First off their hand crafted sausages (chef's hat on display next to them on the menu) are made in house. The tubed meats are placed into New England style lobster rolls which are made by a local artisan baker. They're lightly buttered and then toasted to perfection. The creations are for the most part well thought out as they top the sausage with fresh made in house toppings sourced with local ingredients. The menu can change and they have "guest celebrity" sausage creations sold monthly which are made by famous city chefs. Lets take a look at a few. The first one being my favorite that's been on the menu since day one.

The Brunch Dog

This is a perfect idea for one of their fine dining creations as they recreate a breakfast sandwich that you would expect to get at a fancy hip and hot brunch spot. The Brunch Dog is made with Slagel Farms pork loin breakfast sausage (made in house) and comes topped with Cobb smoked bacon and a fried egg and it's all drizzled in maple mayo. If you're a breakfast sandwich fan like I am you should enjoy this one.

One of their many specials I've had over the years

Brat topped with apples and other goodies from last Fall

As far as the menu goes and what to get it can vary. As I said before they have a main menu where you can find their popular creations which are always available such as the Brunch Dog and then the "Ruben Pulaski" which comes topped with a potato pancake and thousand island dressing. You basically just have to order what sounds good to you since they create different styles of dogs ranging from Southern to Far East as far as inspiration in making them goes. They even got a standard all natural 100% beef hot dog for the kids under 12 that my friend ordered a couple years back. I still give him shit for that. The fries here are served waffle cut style but they arent straight from the freezer and their triple truffle variety is great.

Kiddie Dog

Waffle Fries

One of the great things about the dogs at Franks 'n Dawgs is their uniquq buns. they can be compared best to the buns used for New England Lobster Rolls found up and down the coast of that region out east. So it makes sense then that on Weekends they do a Maine lobster roll here and I tried one out last year and came away quite pleased.

Lobster Roll from Frank's 'n Dawgs

They take a 1/4 poinf of claw meat like that seen up above and lightly slather it with a garlic aioli and some chopped cucumbers with lemon and tarragon. Served with a side of slaw at $17.95 it's not cheap but you got to appreciate the fact its all there for you to see. its not chopped up meat that's been stranded in a can somewhere forever now drowning in mayo. Its a slightly different take on the New England classic but nothing that strays too far away from the authentic taste of this regional favorite.

The Insides

I should stress that I dont go here for a hot dog when I get an itching for a classic version which of what we do best here in Chicago. This is more of a spot that I get to when I have a hankering for something a little more gourmet but dont have to make a reservation and wait until the evening to eat it. The people behind this place are classically trained chefs that saw an opportunity and went with it, successfully. Shown below is my favorite dog to date that I have ate from Franks 'n Dawgs. The Peking Duck Dawg featured a homemade sesame duck sausage with crispy duck skin and puffed rice amongst other goodies on top. Even though it's not on the menu anymore its the reason that keeps me coming back. They change their menu up so you never know what amazing creation could come next.

The Peking Duck Dawg

Franks 'n Dawgs
1863 North Clybourn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60614
(312) 281-5187

Franks 'N' Dawgs on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

G Wiv said...

Da Beef,

Fan of Franks n Dawgs gourmet take on the hot dog, but your pic of the pristine natural casing doggy set my mouth to watering. Plump, juicy, perfectly simmered with no casing crinkle, that mo-fo looks snappy as a purple fedora.

I'd be on my way to F n D right now if it wasn't 9am.

G Wiv


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