There will be two presentations: a global hot dog perspective and a unique Chicago-centric hot dog business that breaks all hot dog stand conventions to great success.
Podcast courtesy of WBEZ’s Chicago Amplified
Doug Sohn, Hot Doug’s
The Encased Meats Emporium and Sausage Superstore
The overnight sensation is really a myth, a pleasant musing and always far from the truth. Doug graduated from Kendall College fourteen years ago with no aspirations of owning a restaurant or even working in one. He simply wanted to know how to cook. This experience under his belt, Doug began a 5-year career editing cookbooks.
The divine intervention, which brought Doug where he is today as Hot Doug: his friend had gone to a hot dog stand and had a bad dog. Simple. A bad dog. He wondered to Doug, “How can anyone make a bad dog?” So Doug and his friend conducted a tour of 30 hot dog stands to find most of them were just good in the B-/C+ kind of way. In their survey they picked up a few great ideas: at one hot dog stand they deep fat fried their hot dog, then finished it on the grill making the natural casing pop just a bit more exquisitely. At another they learned the joys of mating hot dog with caramelized onions. One can almost feel the clouds breaking with the sun streaming through and a rainbow glowing, when Doug said, “I can make a better hot dog myself!” then test drove his ideas on a six month trial basis to see if there was interest. The rest of the story is Dougs’s to convey.
Hot Dog, A Global History
Char-grilled or boiled? Sauerkraut or chili? Mustard or ketchup? Vienna Beef or Sabrett? Only these questions could be raised about one of the world’s favorite backyard, picnic, ballgame, and street foods—the hotdog. Though nearly two billion hot dogs are consumed by Americans annually in the month of July alone, there is absolutely no consensus on which is the right way to serve up a hotdog. In Hot Dog, well known food historian Bruce Kraig recounts the history of this popular “tube steak” from the origin of the sausage 20,000 years ago to its central place in American culture today.
Program hosted at Kendall College.