Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My kind of town, part 3

We go out blogging after midnight...

Another ball game at Wrigley but first we had breakfast and then hot dogs. We met up with Lee Van Cleef downstairs at Mercat. We couldn't figure out why the continental breakfast costs $18 and eggs any style costs $8. Well, it's the quality of the ingredients. Spanish chorizo, incredible cheese. Okay, we bought it.

Lee Van Cleef went out for a walk while Pierino went back to his room to read the papers.

Red line again, but this time we had to get to the shrine of all hot dogs. Pierino loves hot dogs and there is no better place to have a dog than Chicago. No better place in Chicago than Hot Doug's.

The Chicago hot dog is composed like this:
poppy seed roll
all beef frank in a natural casing (go for Vienna Beef)
yellow ball park mustard
green relish
chopped onions, lightly sauteed
dill pickle spear
one or two Chicago sport peppers
celery salt

No tweaking! Everything above is indispensible unless you are a total effing sissy.
Hot Doug's is on the northside about 3 miles from Wrigley. Go early and stand in line. They describe themselves as a "sausage superstore and emporium of encased meat". The Chicago hot dog will only cost you $1.75. But Doug (very nice guy) does real charcuterie. The "celebrity sausage" that day happened to be rabbit. $6.95.

Doug puts a lot of good things into a natural casing. Go visit him on N. California at Roscoe. We love this place.

From there it was back to Wrigley. Cubs lost again to a better team, the Cards. Pierino loved that the Cards' pitcher Weinstock was able to put down two sacrafice bunts to advance a runner each time. The Cub/Cardinal rivalry is huge. But we watched only two fist fights.

Back to the Blackstone for a couple more vodka tonics. Pierino's knees seem to respond well to warm temps and vodka.

Dinner at Shaw's Crab House for a little bit of old school. Scallops, shrimp and there you go. Kind of old Chicago atmo. Pierino gave up martinis a few years ago. But if you are up for them this is good place. They have two rooms; dining room and oyster bar but you can order from either menu in either room. Life is beautiful.

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