Like so many other transplants who move to D.C. — we don’t have to name names, right, Taylor Gourmet? — Chicago native Bob H. really missed some of the iconic bites from his hometown. Like a Vienna Beef dog in a poppy seed bun topped just the right way. Or a hand-dipped Italian beef sandwich loaded with sweet (or hot) peppers.
When he couldn’t find these classics in D.C., he decided to fix the problem himself. He started his own Windy City-themed restaurant that features (you guessed it) Chicago dogs and Italian beef sandwiches. ChiDogO’s officially opened yesterday at 1934 14th St. NW, and I was one of many standing in line for a bite.
After following ChiDogO’s for the past few months online and seeing the mouthwatering photographs, I finally had a chance to sample the famously fussy all-beef hot dog. (Don’t even think about skimping on the proper toppings.) The dog was good, the fries were probably better, but the prices were a little steep for the portion sizes.
According to the menu, a classic Chicago dog goes for $3.19 and a beef sandwich for $5.75, with bigger portions available as well.
I left a bit hungry, but I’d still go back to give it a second whirl. Question is, will the District’s most famous Chicago transplant stop by this Second City recreation and pass judgment? Or will it feel like a betrayal of D.C.’s own icon, Ben’s Chili Bowl, where the president-elect made his famous stop?