Hot Doug’s Mastermind Doug Sohn On The Only Sausage He Couldn’t Sell

Hot_Doug's2Doug Sohn, owner of Hot Doug’s, Chicago’s most glorified hot dog stand, has sold all sorts of sausages over the years, from the classic Windy City–style Vienna beef dog to the “Tuben,” his tubular take on a traditional Rueben sandwich. Sohn’s often obscurely titled franks (“The Shirley Hardman,” anyone?) span virtually every type of meat in your butcher’s repertoire and probably beyond, including an ever-revolving “Game of the Week” special, which spotlights a different wild animal: alligator, crawfish, pheasant, snake — you name it, he’s probably stuck it in a bun, added some unusual toppings for good measure and sold it. Only one weird wiener has ever turned out to be a total dud, according to Sohn: the andouillette, which he explains is the French word for, basically, “intestines stuffed with more intestines.” Continue reading “Hot Doug’s Mastermind Doug Sohn On The Only Sausage He Couldn’t Sell”

This Mezcal Made With Jamón Ibérico Could Make You Squeal

IbericoLabelLeave it to the hams at José Andrés‘ Think Food Group to find a way to add some fancy Spanish pork to just about anything. Consider “Iberico,” the newest label from Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal. The potent 98-proof varietal gets its name and distinctive flavor, of course, from the highly prized black-hooved hogs of the Iberian Peninsula whose meat is among the world’s priciest. Del Maguey founder Ron Cooper credits this modern Spanish twist on the ancient Mexican spirit to Andres’ deputy Ruben Garcia, the former elBulli chef who now heads research and development efforts for Think Food…. Continue reading “This Mezcal Made With Jamón Ibérico Could Make You Squeal”

Green Is The New Gold: The Raw Facts On How Juicing Is Taking Over Our Lives

MILFChicago chef Jared Van Camp is perhaps best known for his work with charcuterie. You could say he wears his penchant for pork on his sleeve, with a vintage-looking English butcher’s diagram of pig parts proudly tattooed on his left forearm. Not the type of guy you’d expect to see pushing pints of liquefied kale, carrot and collard greens. “I’m not a vegetarian by any stretch of the imagination,” says Van Camp. Come springtime, however, he plans to be slinging all sorts of cleverly crafted plant-based concoctions at a fancy new juice bar called Owen + Alchemy. “The timing is right to inject some liquid green vitality into the land of deep-dish and sausage,” says Chicago native Anne M. Owen, a former magazine publisher who is Van Camp’s partner in Owen + Alchemy. The Windy City duo is aiming to capitalize on a trend that’s swept across New York and Los Angeles like a superfood tsunami in recent years and is now spilling throughout urban America. “These days, you throw a rock, you hit a juice bar,” says Melvin Major, Jr., operator of New York’s popular Melvin’s Juice Box, with two locations in Manhattan and plans for a third…. Continue reading “Green Is The New Gold: The Raw Facts On How Juicing Is Taking Over Our Lives”

Tuile of Fortune: Michel Richard Drops a Ritzy Potato Chip Burger on Manhattan

VillardBurger1The recent opening of Villard Michel Richard, tucked inside Manhattan’s Palace Hotel, marked not only its namesake chef’s return to New York after a 40-year absence. It also foisted another gussied-up slab of ground beef onto the city’s escalating up-market burger scene. Behold, the Villard Burger, Richard’s fussy French take on the classic American sandwich. Listed at $26, the burger is a far cry from, say, the outrageous Le Burger Extravagant at Serendipity 3 — that $295 Wagyu-flavored, diamond-toothpick-skewered publicity stunt on a bun which claims to be the world’s most expensive burger. Richard seems to expect real people to actually order his burger. A comparatively affordable option, the Villard Burger falls into the same gourmet category as the popular Black Label Burger at Minetta Tavern ($28) and the original short rib-and-foie gras-stuffed burger at Daniel Boulud’s db bistro moderne ($32). It’s also essentially the same burger that Richard serves at his Central restaurants in Las Vegas and Washington, D.C. Same olive oil brioche bun, baked in-house. Same tomato confit and homemade garlic mayo. Same crunchy potato tuile on top — a fancy chip that has become one of the chef’s signature ingredients. Only at Villard, Richard’s burger costs $8 more…. Continue reading “Tuile of Fortune: Michel Richard Drops a Ritzy Potato Chip Burger on Manhattan”