Chicago is abuzz with the closing of our beloved Hot Doug’s, and while most of my posts here center around real estate (don’t worry, this does too, in a way), I’ve been thinking about why I will miss Hot Doug’s.
Let’s be clear, first though: I had only waited in the “down the block” line 3 times since Doug moved to Roscoe and California, just up the street from the first home I owned. By all accounts, that makes me a heathen in the eyes of some, and a bandwagon-jumper in the eyes of others for even writing this post. I rarely had that kind of time to wait for such deliciousness!
I did have the time, though, back in 2001 and 2002, when you could walk right into Hot Doug’s on Roscoe and order right away. The Britney Spears dog was my favorite then. Then, like now, my home was only a few blocks away.
Many people know me as an expert in real estate in Avondale. I happily called the corner of California and Melrose home for nearly 11 years (still own that condo!) and loved every minute of it. But the first few years I lived there, no one ever knew what to call the area or where I lived. It was un-developed, not sexy, and had an industrial feel to it.
What restaurants like Hot Doug’s, and Kuma’s Corner, and The Pork Shoppe have done is to give our neighborhood something to rally around and have put us on the map. Before Doug moved to Avondale (I like to think he followed me), no one had heard of our neighborhood. Now, today, people seek it out. They *want* to live there for all of the great things it offers (dining, proximity to transportation/riverwalk, well priced homes, etc.).
That would not have been possible without Doug Sohn. He helped turn my little neighborhood that could, into a neighborhood that did.
So, Doug, thanks for putting us on the map and for being you. Whatever the next venture or journey looks like, I hope it’s even better than this one.