Yesterday’s mail brought a PASSLE o’ catalogs – no doubt in anticipation of teh Season – and one, Signals, had this tee shirt (or sweat, if one is so inclined) emblazoned in large, friendly green letters: Relish today.

Smaller, but still quite friendly red letters immediately below add: Ketchup tomorrow.

I believe I may need that shirt.

Thinking about relish and ketchup and stuff put me in mind that I have a cauliflower and some serrano peppers in the fridge that need to be turned into Giardiniera, which made me think about really good hot dogs, and then really good hot dogs made me think about Ketchup (!)

For those of you not clustered around the Southwestern shores of Lake Michigan, hot dogs and ketchup may not be an unusual, ermmm, not to say abnormal, combination; but within broadcast range of WGN, hot dogs are simply not done with the red stuff!

How funny, then, that the last really good Chicago-style hot dog I had out was in a mall food court restaurant in Vernon Hills called…

wait for it…


The fries weren’t too, too bad, either.

We had kinda grown to rely on our local dive, Stadium Hots, for always tasty hot dogs, fries, and pretty darned wonderful burgers, but they recently made some changes that left us – literally – with a bad taste in our mouths.

DrinksCupbfLOStill, one dark and stormy day, while shopping for wedding duds, we came across this friendly red wall in the food court, and the sheer audacity of a joint named for the not-allowed-ever-EVER-on-a-Chicago-dog condiment appealed to me (I kinda liked the graphics, too).

HotDogMealbfLOYUM. Tasty dog, well stuffed into a poppy seed bun and topped with sport peppers, tomato, celery salt, diced onion, yellow mustard, green relish and a pickle. I DID have ketchup – but for those really quite nice fries.

Rich opted for a Gyro basket and was quite pleased with his choice as well. Next time, I may try the cheeseburger to see how the good folk at Ketchup stack up against my recollection of the late, lamented,
used-to-be-really-good burger from Stadium Hots.

Or, mebbe, I’ll just have another hot dog.

With Ketchup.

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