When I was growing up, there was only one way to eat a hot dog – an Oscar Mayer wiener inside a soft bun smothered in ketchup. Over time, I discovered the joys of giving franks the pungent, piquant treatment, as epitomized in Chicago wurst houses. Louie’s Char (2336 N. Farwell Ave.) is doing a pretty solid rendition of the Chicago dog, but with a difference – instead of the traditional poppy seed bun, it’s using a tender, eggy brioche bun made by Milwaukee’s Peter Sciortino Bakery. This ’furter – a juicy, snappy, quarter-pound, kosher-beef Hebrew National link slightly split and charred on the grill – just wows in its doggone deliciousness. In Chicagoland, ketchup should not come within inches of a wiener. And I agree. There’s something about that fresh, crisp mix of sliced tomato, chopped white onion, sport peppers, sweet pickle relish, creamy yellow mustard-garlic aioli, pickle spear and dash of celery salt. It just hums. Here, then, in all its glory, is a Louie’s Chicago Style Char Dog.
Address: 2336 N. Farwell Ave., 414-212-8761
Hours: Lunch, dinner and late night Mon-Sat; Lunch and dinner Sun
Prices: Char dogs $7.49-$8.49