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Au Cheval serves fries topped with mornay sauce and a fried egg.
Photograph: Courtesy Au Cheval Au Cheval serves fries topped with mornay sauce and a fried egg.

The best french fries in Chicago

From fried eggs to foie gras, Chicago's best french fries come topped with a wide array of ingredients

By Rebecca Skoch and Elizabeth Atkinson

It's no surprise Chicago restaurants absolutely nail french fries, considering how great Chicago is at making hot dogs and burgers. These versions of our favorite side range from garlic fries at a Latin American restaurant to decadent foie gras fries, and they are totally worth seeking out.

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La Sirena Clandestina
Photograph: The Barkers

11. Garlic Fries at La Sirena Clandestina ($6)

Restaurants Latin American West Loop

This Brazilian spot on Fulton Market has plenty of small plates to nosh on, and the house-made fries are among the best. The huge portion of fries is scattered with bits of garlic and herbs that combine for a wonderful aroma when they arrive at your table. The fries are on the thin side, and their super-crunchy crust yields to a surprisingly custardy interior. Served with a creamy aioli that’s a little bit spicy and a little bit citrusy, they’re almost impossible to stop snacking on and make the perfect companion to one of the bright and vibrant Latin-inspired drinks on the creative cocktail list.

Photograph: Don Markus

12. Fries at the Long Room ($4)

Restaurants American Lake View

We haven't found anything at Beard and Belly at Sidecar at Long Room that we aren't in love with yet, and that includes the fries. These are choose-your-own-adventure fries, coming in a variety of ways: on their own with your choice of dip, poutine-drenched in short rib gravy and curd cheese sauce with dots of green onion, or as chili cheese fries, with "lunch lady" chili and curd cheese sauce. Whatever you pick, these crispy, salty goodies are sure to satisfy.

Photograph: Courtesy Dusek’s Board & Beer

13. Beef Fat Frites at Dusek's Board and Beer ($6)

Bars Gastropubs Lower West Side

These little gems come with harissa ketchup, giving them just a bit of a kick. But these savory potato slices are good whether you'd like to add a bit of spice or not—they're cooked in beef fat with crispy ends and tender middles and are great to pair with any sandwich you desire.

Cheese Fries
Photograph: Courtesy Portillo's

14. Cheese Fries at Portillo’s ($2.70)

Restaurants Hot dogs River North

There’s something to be said about the classic fries from a fast-food burger joint, like the excellent ones from Chicago institution Portillo’s. If you grew up in or around the city, chances are these are the fries you remember eating as a kid. Crinkle-cut, they’re fried just until tender but not brown, and the oil used to fry them provides a slightly sweet flavor reminiscent of funnel cake. Inside they’re filled with fluffy, soft potato, perfect for sopping up whatever you want to dip them in. Get them with Portillo’s cheese sauce smothered on top—it isn’t real cheddar, but the creamy, warm processed cheddar cheese is exactly the kind of nostalgic flavor you want with this kind of fry.

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