Franks 'N' Dawgs sign
As promised, a few more enticing pics from my lunchtime jaunt to the new Franks ‘N’ Dawgs in Lincoln Park. This place is dangerously close to my office, and serves as a nice alternative to salad bar overload at Whole Foods. And by salad alternative, I mean Chef Joe Doren’s jaw-dropping hot dog creations like the Stylin’ Dawg (German-style brat with apples, walnuts, celery, grapes and mayo), Beef Curry (ground beef and Indian curry with orange marmalade, orange salad, parsley, blood orange oil and raisin slaw), Tur-Doggin (turkey and date dog with duck confit, herb garlic aïoli and pickled onions) and Cheesehead (Sheboygan brat, caramelized onion, grilled portobellos and smoked gouda). Every month Doren also hands the reigns over to a local chef who makes a monthly dog special (when I was there it was a pork loin sausage with smoked bacon, fried egg and maple mayo from Lockwood’s Phillip Foss, next up is Avenues Chef Curtis Duffy). It only intensifies your ordering conundrum. Once you do decide on your dog (I recommend throwing in the $4.50 mystery corn dog with beer mustard), you pick a celebrity “number” for your order (see Frank On the Table below), from Chris Rock to Brad Pitt. Add to that fresh ingredients, light-as-air buttered artisan buns from Nicole’s, a Wisconsin-inspired brat selection, an intriguing Chicken Cesar dog with black garlic, and list of Global Dawgs like the lamb keema with English peas, cucumber salad and caramelized pearl onions and you know this isn’t another chili-cheese dog spot (but they have those too). But it was Global N’Awlins that caught my eye first..spicy, juicy andouille, fried okra, fried shrimp, kicky gumbo sauce..a po’boy hot dog style…
The opposite of that might have been the Fu, ordered by my vegetarian companion. But with marinated tofu, goat’s cheese, grilled eggplant relish, portobellos and a bright green Italian salsa verde, even I didn’t miss the meat.
Ever see a corn dog presentation almost too pretty to eat? Housemade beer mustards accompany the mystery corn dog (made with a different sausage of the week, ours=German bratwurst), and Anson Mills polenta batter which creates a sweet, golden coating that’s crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. Franks ‘N’ Dawgs, 1863 N. Clybourn, 312.281.5187
Mystery Corn Dawg with housemade beer mustard