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COLUMN: A brief guide to some of Bloomington’s best fries



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A plate of Fringlings sit on a table Nov. 29 at Falafels Middle Eastern Grill. The fries and onion rings in the basket are seasoned with a blend of middle eastern spices and are served with hummus. Colin Kulpa Buy Photos

I love fries and I cannot lie. Unassuming enough to be an excellent side to an entree, they're also a no-frills, stand-alone comfort food you can always count upon. Almost all restaurants around town offer some kind of fries on their menus, many of which added their own twist to this classic crispy delight. 

Best Friday night comfort food: Tap fries at The Tap Brewery & Craft Beer Bar

Lately, I’ve frequently found myself spending my Friday nights at The Tap, located at 101 N. College Ave. I'm either sitting by the bar, listening to the live performance of the night, or chatting with a couple of friends over glasses of beer. To properly unwind from a week filled with classes, assignments and exams, ordering a tray of the brewery’s famous fries along with a glass of my favorite Beardliner beer mixed with raspberry syrup is a must. 

As the tray of freshly made fries is brought to your table, first feast your eyes upon the slightly charred golden offerings, well-seasoned and sprinkled with spices. Four kinds of house-made dipping sauces stand at attention at the four corners of the tray. Take a fry, or take several at the same time if that’s more your thing, and plunge them into the sauce of your choice and wash them down with a mouthful of beer. 

Most Instagrammable: Farmfamous garlic fries at FARMbloomington 

To be honest, I don’t go to FARMbloomington much. To me, it’s always been one of those restaurants reserved for special occasions, something along the lines of dates and birthday celebrations. When I do end up going, I always make sure to order its Farmfamous garlic fries. 

Served in a big white bowl and garnished with Parmesan, chili flakes and parsley, the lemon zest-drenched fries never fail to make my Instagram camera almost as hungry as I am. It's not surprising that this dish is one of the most frequently featured under the restaurant's location tag on Instagram.

Best entree side: fries at Falafels Middle Eastern Grill

Sprinkled with spices, Falafels' simple yet carefully made fries are the perfect side to entrees such as gyros, shawarma and kabob. Try pairing them with hummus or tzatziki sauce for a Mediterranean twist. 

Most show-stealing dipping sauce: Mentaiko fries at Do: Asian Fusion Cuisine & Lounge 

The dipping sauce takes center stage in this late night favorite, offered by Do: Asian Fusion Cuisine & Lounge on East Fourth Street. The golden and fluffy fries are meant to be enjoyed with this creamy beige-colored sauce with just a splash of spice made out of fermented pollock roe, a type of cod, and mayonnaise. Surprise, surprise. 

Most loyal: Scholars Inn Bakehouse fries at the Bookmark[et] Eatery

Need I say more? Whether it be not knowing what to eat, hunting for a study snack or having to go to class in 15 minutes, the french fries from Scholars Inn Bakehouse in the basement of the Herman B Wells Library got you covered. Nothing feels better than basking in the jealous looks of your peers as you solve that complicated math problem while munching away on good ole’ Wells fries. 

I don’t know about you, but I'm pretty sure I found my dead week munchies. 

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