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Encased meat emergency: Hot Doug's to close

Expect lots of whining about wieners as popular gourmet hotdog stand Hot Doug’s, 3324 N. California in the Avondale neighborhood, prepares to close for good in the early fall.

The “sausage superstore” tweeted Tuesday that it will serve its last encased meats on Oct. 3.

People often line up around the block at Hot Doug’s, some forgetting they must pay in cash, to devour the lauded encased meats, including wild boar, a celebrity sausage and the menu standards.

Owner and chef Doug Sohn, whose book “Hot Doug’s the Book,” was released in August, opened the Avondale stand after a 2004 fire closed the original site on Roscoe Street.

“Honestly, there’s no hidden agenda, there’s nothing that will come out later,” Sohn told the Sun-Times during a brief break from serving a late-morning lunchtime crowd Tuesday. “It’s just time. It’s been unbelievably great, but I want to do something else. And I don’t know what that is.”

Not celebratory blowouts are planned, he added. It will be “business as usual” until the end.

Standing in a line that stretched from a small order counter inside, out the front doors and west down Roscoe Street for 50 yards or so, Doug’s devotee Adam Schneider was on “the first of many pilgrimages” he plans to make before early October. His fiancée wasn’t too happy with his lunchtime destination, seeing as he has managed to lose 65 pounds before his upcoming wedding, Schneider said, “but she understands. She’s a Hot Doug’s aficionado as well.”

Nearby, Roxanne Vitacco read the alarming reports about Hot Doug’s and came to pay homage.

“I have to savor every last Doug day,” she said.

Does that mean she’ll ramp up her visits between now and Oct. 3?

“Hell yeah!”

She’s likely not alone.

Here are some of your reactions on social media to the news of Hot Doug’s closing:

[View the story “Hot Doug’s set to close in October” on Storify]h/t DNAinfo Chicago

Mike Thomas, Tracy Maple, Emily McFarlan Miller and Dustin Park contributed to this report.