Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Chicago Hot Dog Co.

8320 N. Michigan Rd.
Indianapolis, IN 46268
(317) 808 - 5980
Chicago Hot Dog Co.

As you must know by now, I lived in Chicago for 2 years after college before moving back here. I always get pretty excited when a new Chicago style restaurant opens in Indy. Recently I had heard a rumor that Fat Dan's in Broad Ripple is moving to SoBro and becoming more of a restaurant/pub with multiple beer taps. When I heard that Chicago Hot Dog Co. was opening near work, it took no less than a few weeks for me to stop by and try it. The restaurant is located just south of 86th St on Michigan Rd. in front of the License Branch. I really hope that this place is successful as this area has become a black hole for restaurants. Just within the past year or so another hot dog place has opened and closed across the street from Chicago Hot Dog Co. The restaurant was pretty busy at lunch time. They have an order window and a pick up window. The staff was very friendly and patient. The menu consists of hot dogs, burgers, chicken sandwiches, Italian Beef, and salads. I think all the main menu items can be prepared Gluten Free. The decor in the restaurant brings back memories of my days in Chicago. It has pictures of the skyline, the El, and just has this feel that you are getting working class food in a working class restaurant. They have a good price point on their menu items. I got a Chicago Dog, Italian beef, and a soda for around $10.

I compare all my Chicago dogs and Italian Beef sandwiches to my favorite Chicago Style restaurant, Portillo's. I have found places around here that do a comparable Chicago Dog, but nobody comes close to the Portillo's Italian Beef. The Chicago Hot Dog Co. ranks up there with the Chicago Dog. So the restaurant does a justice to the Chicago Dog. What's in a Chicago Dog you ask? Well it starts with a poppy seed bun, then a Vienna Beef hot dog, covered in onion, relish, sport peppers, tomato, celery salt, mustard and a dill pickle. People think that it is overkill, but I think all these flavors work well together. A Chicago dog plays with all your tastebuds, with its mix of sweet, salty, bitter, and sour flavors. Personally I eat the dill pickle first because it just gets too messy. The only place I could find error in this hot dog was that someone was a little heavy handed in the celery salt. You just want to taste a hint of celery salt as it can be overpowering. The Vienna beef hot dog had a nice snap to it. I will come back for the hot dogs. Back in my heyday I could put down a Chicago dog, an Italian Beef, and some krinkle fries. This time around I had to try both a dog and the Italian Beef, not enough room for the fries. The Italian beef was pretty good. I always order mine with hot giardiniera (blend of hot peppers and veggies). You can get the sandwich prepared dry, wet, or dipped. I went with dipped this time. This was probably another mistake I made. They use a crusty French bread as the base of this sandwich. The au jus helps break down the bread a little bit so it isn't as tough to eat. I should have gone with wet instead. The dipped style left the sandwich a bit too dry for me. Trust me, this is not a dainty sandwich. You will get a little messy. The key to eating an Italian beef sandwich is to lean over your plate a little bit so you don't drip that wonderful au jus on yourself. The last thing you want to do is head back to the office with a nice au jus stain on your shirt. The beef was pretty tasty. It was tender, sliced thin, and had great flavor. They use a good blend of spices. I could taste salt, pepper, oregano and some other flavors I could not pinpoint. The hot peppers add a little heat and some crunch to the sandwich. If you recall my Detour post, they did not give me enough giardineira. I will give the beef another go round one day, but the hot dog was the best part of my meal.


"The only time to EAt diet food, is when you are waiting for the steak to cook." - Julia Child

Chicago Hot Dog Company on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

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