I think "Hot Doug's" was probably my favorite restaurant... ever. Not my favorite fast food place. Not my favorite hot dog place. My favorite restaurant. Period.
Why? Well, I really love food. I love good cheese and grass-fed steak tartare and salads made of foraged wild greens but I think most of that stuff is really unapproachable for most people. Like, 99.9% of people can't afford to go to a place like Alinea, and even if they could it takes months to get a reservation and you have to dress up and etc. etc. etc. High-end cuisine has walls a lot of the time that makes it a thing that is only for the elite.
And that's really fucking unfair.
But Hot Doug's took foie gras and put it on a bun, set it at a reasonable price (was their anything on their menu that was over $10?) and placed it inside a friendly-diner-esque location where the owner greeted everybody who walked in and took their orders, normally in his t-shirt.
It's going to sound a little weird but Hot Doug's is everything I aspire to as an artist. Take the universe, take greatness, take emotion, take all of that stuff that we normally reserve for people who drive BMW's and argue about whether Harvard or Yale is better, and put it on a bun so everybody can enjoy it.