We Chicagoans take hot dogs seriously. It's practically the law. These eats hold a special place in our, uh, stomach. So do your city proud and get your hot dog fix at Chicago's Dog House.
You could easily overlook CDH — it's practically a hole-in-the-wall tucked between McDonald's and CVS on Fullerton — but you'll be glad you didn't. The simple industrial interior, with its high ceilings and metal walls, complements the eatery's other decorative touches. The front counter is made of wood from the barn of the owner's father, and tables are made of old bowling lanes. While the space isn't huge, there's comfortable seating for 10-12 inside.
The menu has a mix of classic hot dogs ($2.90), specialty dogs ($3.50) and gourmet sausages ($6.50). Try the "Mayor Daley," topped with Irish cheddar and caramelized onions. Or the "Snoop Dog," complete with homemade chili, onion and Colby cheese. The ribeye steak sausage is an absolute gem — juicy and topped with sauteed mushrooms, aged Irish cheddar, caramelized onions and horseradish sauce. But one of the best parts of Chicago's Dog House is its fries. They're freshly hand cut, lightly fried and seasoned "chips" that pair wonderfully with the dogs. Meals go for $4.99-$8.50 and include a dog, fries and a drink. If you're not feeling a hot dog, there are a few burgers ($3.90) available, too.
During the school year, this place is flooded with DePaul students going to and from the nearby bars. Otherwise you'll find Lincoln Park folks grabbing a quick lunch or a cheap dinner.
Average cost: <$10
Centerstage Reviewer: John Kristoff