The French Canadian dish is showing up all over town, including at Leopold, Red Door, and others.
BadHappy’s RedNeck poutine
Poutine is unsightly and will clog your arteries, but the French Canadian dish, a hodgepodge of cheese curds, french fries, and gravy, is spawning irresistible riffs around Chicago. Leopold (1450 W. Chicago Ave.; 312-348-1028) first put it on our radar New Year’s Eve 2010, and its version—dressed with pickled yellow peppers and lamb sausage gravy—hasn’t budged from the menu. Fast-forward to the present and we’re in the throes of poutine mania, as evidenced by these newcomers: Red Door (2118 N. Damen Ave.; 773-697-7221), which enlists juicy chicken confit and bright green peas; The Monkey’s Paw (2524 N. Southport Ave.; 773-413-9314), serving a fancified take with duck confit and pear béchamel; and BadHappy Poutine Shop (939 N. Orleans St.; 773-490-5671), which offers eight varieties of the dish for which it’s named, from the traditionally topped Quebecer to the off-the-reservation RedNeck, a combo of barbecued pork, fried okra, mac and cheese, and PBR gravy. Wonder how our neighbors to the north would feel about that one.
Photograph: Anna Knott