Eat This: Some of Chicago's Best French Fries, Found in Lakeview

Photo Credit: Victoria Kent

Photo Credit: Victoria Kent

July 18th, 2016 | Marissa Conrad | Chicago Tribune

A good French fry is pretty easy to find. A great French fry? Much harder.

It's a Goldilocks situation: These fries are too crispy. These fries are too soft. These could use more seasoning. These taste as if they were ambushed by the girl in the yellow dress on the Morton Salt canister. You get the idea.

That's why I was so excited to find a truly memorable plate of fries when I wasn't even looking for them. At Beef & Barley, a cozy bar with an ample sidewalk patio in Lakeview, they came, unassumingly, with the burger ($12; also available solo, with a roasted garlic yogurt dipping sauce, for $5). They looked beautiful: golden-brown, skin-on, glistening from the fryer. And they tasted even better, with a thin layer of extra-crunchy skin cradling a fluffy pillow of potato. Imagine biting into the best funnel cake the state fair has to offer, except, of course, savory.

The chef must have some trick, I thought. But, better yet, the prep is deceptively simple — the potatoes are just double-fried in vegetable oil and tossed with kosher salt, reports chef Cecilio Rodriguez. That means someone in the kitchen has the timing of the fryer, to quote our gal Goldilocks, just right. I'll raise a French fry to that.