My husband is from the Plattsburg area, but hasn't lived there in over 50 years. Yet every time we go back to the "north country," he has to schedule a stop at Clare and Carl's for a couple of Michigans buried (onions "buried" under the hot dog with the Michigan sauce on top of the dog). He loves to sit at the counter of the dilapidated building and soak in the ambiance. Thomas Wolfe wrote "You can't go home again," but this restaurant experience takes my husband as close to home as he can get.
The red hots are a great junk food treat and Clare and Carl's compete very favorably with competitors McSweeny and others. If you get much outside the Plattsburgh area, they may claim they are serving Michigans but you have to be in Plattsburgh to get the real deal. It's all about the sauce. The building looks like it won't last the winter, but it is on the national register list. New owners are committed to maintain the same menu and the history of Clare and Carl's. They are improving the restaurant a bit starting with new picnic benches if you prefer to have your lunch outside. They will still serve your lunch to you in your car if you like. But our favorite spot is inside at the counter.
If you want a taste of Plattsburgh, Clare and Carl's is the spot. You won't be sorry.
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