Monday was National French Fry Day.
Pretty good way to start the week, huh? There’s nothing like a crunchy-on-the-outside, fluffy-on-the-inside potato stick that’s fresh out of the fryer.
Here, in no particular order, is my take on some of the best fries in the Omaha area.
- Dario’s, 52nd Street and Underwood Avenue. This continental eatery calls them frites and serves them the European way, thin-cut with herb mayonnaise as well as ketchup. There’s nothing too healthy about eating them with that delectable white condiment, but everybody deserves an occasional treat. Served in a paper cone, they’re crunchy and delicious.
- Runza, various locations around the Omaha area. The potatoes prepared at this chain with a Nebraska pedigree are essentially the definition of french fries. Runza workers must have their timing down to a science, because the fries have been freshly cooked about 90% of the time I’ve ordered them. And there’s something about a crinkle cut that makes the middle of the fry seem fluffier.
- Five Guys, 73rd and Dodge Streets, 132nd Street and West Dodge Road, and 71st Street in Papillion. I’m including this national chain for two reasons: The fries have their skins on, meaning they’re cut from fresh potatoes, and you get a huge bag of them (enough for at least two people) for a nominal price. A bonus: They’re pretty tasty.
- Blatt Beer & Table, near 12th and Cuming Streets and 168th Street and West Center Road in the Shops of Legacy. Blatt’s fries are among the crunchiest in the city, in my humble opinion. The condiments are awesome, especially the smoked ketchup and the Parmesan-peppercorn aioli. And the fries remain crispy no matter what you dip them in.
- Amsterdam Falafel & Kabob, 52nd Street and Underwood Avenue. The twist here is that the fries are served with curry seasoning, and if you like that flavor, you will want to eat these every day. The curry isn’t overpowering, just unusual and craveable.
- Block 16, near 16th and Farnam Streets. One of my go-to lunches is a burger and fries at this excellent eatery. There are other entree delights as well, including a to-die-for pulled pork sandwich. But fries are a must with whatever you choose. The restaurant’s unique fry sauce is essential, and if you’re into poutine (fries covered with cheese and beef gravy), it’s here.
- Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, various locations across the Omaha area. I mention this chain because it has the skinniest fries in town, like shoestring thin. That, of course, makes them super-crunchy and enables you to eat several in a single bite (if no one is looking). It also reminds me of Steak & Shake, the beloved hamburger joints south and east of here. My dream is that they come to Omaha while I still can eat.
Here are the city’s 37 essential restaurants
Stella’s Bar & Grill
UMAMI Asian Cuisine
The Boiler Room Restaurant
Blue Sushi Sake Grill
El Dorado Mexican Restaurant
Time Out Chicken
Lo Sole Mio
La Casa Pizzaria
Saddle Creek Breakfast Club
Ika Ramen & Izakaya
Blue & Fly Asian Kitchen
El Basha Mediterranean Grill
Twisted Cork Bistro
Tired Texan BBQ
Le Voltaire French Restaurant