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Lesser known hotdogs in CT

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  • Mark McClure Mar 4, 2006 09:53 AM
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I'm in the process of making a web page and guide to Hot Dog stands in Connecticut. We all know about the places along the shore(ie. Swanky Franks, Super Dooper Weinie, etc) but I'm looking for some of the lesser known places. Any suggestions would be appreciated. I'm up close to 60 places, but a few have closed since starting this project a year ago. Thanks.

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  1. My brother lives in Southington and can't stop raving about Blackie's in Cheshire. He travels the state a lot for his job and has tried many places, but considers Blackie's the best in CT. He got me a jar of their hot pepper relish and I have to admit it was pretty darn tasty. I don't think they have a website, but you might be interested in this article from the New Haven Advocate.

    Link: http://www.newhavenadvocate.com/gbase...

    1. Maybe you should link to your list so people don't give you ones you already have.

      1. Glenwood Drive-In in Hamden. 2538 Whitney Ave. Farily easy access off the Merritt Pkwy. Great dogs cooked over charcoal, and very good onion rings.

        And be sure to put a link to your page here when it's up and running!

        1. Frankie's in Waterbury is a must!
          Also Bart's in Windsor.

          1. I couldn't agree with Joanie more! Show us what you got, we'll tell what you are missing!

            Cheers,
            HC

            1 Reply
            1. re: HungryChris

              the yankee doodle in new haven. They have many heart cloggers, but they are amazing. Good friend of mine holds record for one sitting consumption of the cheese stuffed, bacon wrapped hot dog on buttered buns.

              Yankee Doodle also has sumptuous 'tiny' burgers

            2. Johnny Ad's in Old Saybrook has good foot-long hot dogs
              with old-fashioned grilled buns.

              1. I'm from New Jersey, but have been to Connecticut several times for the sole purpose of sampling hot dogs. I've been to about a dozen places, mostly the familiar ones. Many of the hot dog joints in Conn. use the same Hummel dog. The Glenwood in Hamden is my favorite of these. A great charbroiled dog. My other favorite in Conn. is Rosco's Big Dog in Hartford. They use a Thumann's Griddle Frank. Excellent dog, and great homemade toppings. Let us know when your web page is up and running. Looking forward to it.

                1. A&W- Numerous Locations
                  Al’s- Naugatuck
                  Augie’s- Manchester
                  Augie & Ray’s- East Hartford
                  Bart’s- Windsor
                  Bill’s Drive In – Monroe
                  Blackie’s – Chesire
                  Botsford Drive in – Newtown
                  Buster’s- Bristol
                  Capital Lunch- New Britain
                  Carville’s Ranch House- Hartford
                  Chelle’s – Stafford Springs
                  Clamp’s – New Milford
                  Danny’s Drive In – Stratford
                  David’s Place – Chesterfield
                  The Dawg House – New Britain
                  Delicious Dogs – Berlin
                  Denmo’s – Southbury
                  The Dog Stop – Bolton
                  Doogie’s –Newington
                  Duchess- Numerous Locations
                  Five Guys- Avon, Orange
                  Frankie’s- Waterbury(4), Bristol, Naugatuck, Madison, West Haven
                  Friendly’s- Numerous Locations
                  Glenwood Drive In- Hamden
                  Guida’s – Middlefield
                  Happy Day’s Drive In – East Hampton
                  Harry’s Place- Colchester
                  Hot Dog House – New London
                  Hot Dogs Plus- Meridan
                  Hot Dog Stand – Westport
                  The Hut – Berlin
                  Jay’s Place- Manchester
                  J.K.- Danbury
                  Johnny Ad’s – Old Saybrook
                  Junior’s – Canton
                  Lake Zoar Drive In- Stevenson
                  Mc Henry’s – Willimantic
                  Merritt Canteen – Bridgeport
                  Michael’s Hot Dogs – New Haven
                  Murphy’s Route 66 – Columbia
                  Paul’s – Milford
                  Pilot House – Haddam
                  Pluto’s – Bloomfield
                  Rawley’s – Fairfield
                  Rich’s Drive In – Somers
                  Roadside Chili House – Bethel, Brookfield
                  Rosco’s Big Dog – Hartford
                  Sahadi’s Hotties – New Britain
                  Saint’s - Southington
                  Shady Glen – Manchester
                  Shelton Dog House - Shelton
                  Shiek’s – Torrington
                  Silver Lake Restaurant – Berlin
                  Super Duper Weenie – Fairfield, Monroe
                  Swanky Franks – Norwalk, Milford
                  Sycamore Drive In – Bethel
                  T&G Hot Dogs Plus – Bridgeport
                  Top Dog – Portland
                  Wonkas Specialty Dogs – Danbury
                  Woody’s - Hartford

                  I had to delete a few that have closed, tehre may be more that have closed tho. Whn my site is complete I will include addresses, type of dogs etc. Thanks

                  19 Replies
                  1. re: Mark M

                    Although Connecticut hot dog stands serve mostly the beef/pork blend, there are some fine places that serve a quality all beef dog. Five Guys serves a split and grilled Hebrew National dog. Top Dog serves a grilled natural casing Sabrett. Both are on your list. One that is not is Chez Leonard. It's a cart serving Hebrew National franks with casing, which is rare. They also have a variety of homemade toppings.

                    1. re: Mark M

                      Top Dog in Cos Cob serves grilled Sabrett's natural casing. Excellent fries, both regular and sweet potato, as well. In a retro-style diner, close to 95.

                      1. re: cteats
                        f
                        FrankieBeans

                        Yes, Top Dog is excellent...I believe the well-respected reporter from the Greenwich Time, Michael Dinan, did a piece on them a while back.

                        Also did not see Overton's in Norwalk on the list. Simple, no-frills dogs, but delicious. Nice place to chill out in the summer.

                      2. re: Mark M

                        Great idea! Cool Cow in Manchester uses the long Hummel and grills it. Not too long ago they had a special - 2 dogs and bunch of good fries for under 6 bucks! They may still offer it. Afterward have some of their soft serve.

                        1. re: Tom

                          sorry, cool cow closed about a year ago and I don't rec the replacement

                        2. re: Mark M

                          What about:
                          Turk's,Jimmies and Chicks? All in West Haven...
                          Vincents in Branford?
                          Dino's in North Haven?
                          Nick's Char pit in North Haven/New Haven?

                          1. re: Nancy

                            Don't forget Duchess Family Rest. [a small chain]-the one in Hamden makes some nice dogs-on home made buns!
                            Chili dogs are A+,the 'works' equally yummy!
                            Other locations-West Haven, Wallingford.

                            1. re: Nancy

                              Also in Milford & Fairfield

                              1. re: Nancy

                                Just for sake of people who may read this down the line - the Duchess in Hamden is now closed.

                                1. re: Jestner

                                  There's actually one in Bridgeport also.

                              2. re: Nancy

                                Turk's has very good Hummel dogs. Avoid Chick's & Jimmie's.

                              3. re: Mark M

                                I'm reading this from CA and haven't lived in CT since about 1980. I remember 2 places. One, Bart's in Windsor is on your list. The other, Jimmie's of Savin Rock in West Haven isn't.

                                Jimmie's current location has been a nice sit down seafood restaurant for a number years now but, they still srve their famous hot dogs. Their old location was a combination of a drive up stand and a much smaller sit down restaurant. Before my time, I believe that it was just a drive up stand.

                                My Grandfather and I would always get a hot dog for "desert" after having our fill of that wonderful seafood.

                                1. re: JB

                                  Quote: "My Grandfather and I would always get a hot dog for "desert" after having our fill of that wonderful seafood."

                                  This is too funny. My dad and I used to do the opposite. We'd each have a "split dog" as an appetizer while waiting for our whole belly clams to cook in the fryer!

                                  While Jimmie's is now a sit-down restaurant, its place as a Savin Rock institution warrants inclusion on any list of top CT dogs.

                                  1. re: FoodieJim

                                    Too funny indeed! Two great family traditions. Jimmie's is at the top of the list of things that I miss from CT.

                                  2. re: JB

                                    My Dad used to regularly get a hot dog for dessert at the (now closed) Mt. Kisco deli. He said his father used to do the same thing when he was growing up in Brooklyn.

                                    That was the only time I'd heard of doing that until reading your post.

                                    1. re: LTom

                                      Wow! Who knew? Perhaps, it's more common than either of us realized.

                                  3. re: Mark M

                                    This is just photos of some of the stands that will be on my list. I have uploaded all that I can for free on this website. Sorry for the poor quality of some, they are a few years old. Still working on my site.

                                    Link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/53907779...

                                    1. re: Mark M

                                      Chez Lenard - a hotdog cart on Main Street in Ridgefield. Always busy.

                                      1. re: Asher

                                        Chez Lenard seconded - great dogs and buns. And where else can you get that awesome cheese sauce and peppers?

                                    2. I think it's called Higgies on 154 in Haddam? Haven't been there in a while so can't give an accurate review, just thought you might want to check it out if you haven't already.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: Lisa

                                        Higgie's is closed and for sale. Has been for a year.

                                        Redstone

                                      2. Great list... JKs in Danbury is great... does anybody know if Big Eds in Danbury is still around? They used to park their trailer at various spots near the Danbury Fair Mall.. last time I went there was probably 5 yrs ago and at that time they had been around for alomost 20 yrs...

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: christian

                                          Big Ed is still there. Segar street in Chuck's parking lot.

                                          1. re: christian

                                            Big Ed's is the greatest, I used to stop everyday on the way to work and buy 2 chili dogs ... in the dead of winter the windows were down and the jacket was off and I was guzzling 2 sodas. I moved to California in 1981 and flew back hunted Ed down and he gave me a huge jar of chili to bring back to CA since no one makes their own ...they all use the canned garbage. He wouldn't give the recipe but he told me one of the secrets and I have been trying to get the right combination ever since. I think its the hot dog that make it ... It was fun to watch my friends in Ca wimp out on Big Eds Chili ... most turned beat red and started sweating profusely ... the best chili ever ....if you know anyone that says they like it hot ... get them a big eds chili dog ...unless they don't make the chili like that anymore ...now i know he is still there I will be making a trip to Ct. to see my family and Big Eds.

                                          2. Just a note to say THANKS for putting this list together...
                                            YOU ROCK!

                                            my faves (Saints, Rosco's, Capital Lunch, Glenwood) are on your list but now I've got a ton more to try.

                                            1. Thomilson's in Bridgeport is a long time favorite, great place, the spelling might be wrong.

                                              Also, it is pretty well known for 75 years, but The Windmill Bar and Grille in Stratford make world class chilidogs. I have been going there for almost 40 years and my Dad for over 60 years. I have not been there in about 15 years and hope they are still in business, does anyone know?

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: Bino
                                                f
                                                Fois gras fan

                                                Fred's Shanty in New London!

                                                1. re: Bino

                                                  Tomlinson's (Hummel's dog) is still on the corner of Boston Ave and Noble Ave in Bridgeport, although the ownership and quality have changed since it was a little shack.

                                                  The Windmill, on the corner of Thompson and Hollister, in Stratford is still around.

                                                  The quality of the dogs has suffered greatly since Miller's Provisions went out of business, and they now serve Hummel's skinless. The chili is the only reason to have a dog there now.

                                                2. Almost forgot a new place in Manchester called Pastrami on Wry (no lie). They serve a "Main Street Hotdog" which is a really good Bogner ( a local company) dog served w chili, cheese and kraut and 2 sides (choose from tasty slaw, pasta salad or potato salad or substitue one for shoe string fries for an extra dollar). Think it's 5 bucks - a steal and very good!

                                                  1. Chez Leonard's - hot dog cart on Main Street in Ridgefield, CT

                                                    Great hot dogs, wonderful owners
                                                    creative toppings

                                                    Link: http://www.food411.com

                                                    1. t
                                                      tony majersky

                                                      Guidos drive in will be reopening very soon. They will actually be taking over the cool cow located at 242 broad st in manchester. i worked at guidos for the last 4 years in Enfield. Now that the paper work is finally done, we should be moving in in the next couple of days.

                                                      1. A lot of the places that are listed.. Harrys, Augies, Augies and Rays, Capital lunch, Shady Glen, Chells Dinner, Barts, Pastrami on Rye, The Dog stop and many others carry Bogner hot dogs and hamburgers. From what i understand they do both natural casing and a all beef hot dog along with their famous kelly dogs.... i live in MA now but i make a special trip to their stores once in a while just becuase i know its a quality product

                                                        1. I've finally got to say it- Blackie's in Cheshire is DISGUSTING.
                                                          Cheap horrible dogs, condiments set out on the counter for all to fondle- why do people keep recommending this greasy bacteria fest? It's revolting.

                                                          4 Replies
                                                          1. re: cheesemonger

                                                            They use Hummel hot dog if memory serves. Hardly cheap hot dogs. Never heard anyone say that Hummel dogs are horrible. The Hummels take care in their products and it shows.
                                                            The place is just as clean as any other mom & pop diner/restaurant
                                                            And the reason people visit there is because the hot dogs and relish are wonderful & reasonable.

                                                            1. re: Jestner

                                                              I second the motion. Nothing wrong with Blackie's at all. And imagine never eating at a place with common condiments? No Blackie's, no Augies & Ray's, no Harry's, no Glenwood, no Mickey's, no Shady Glen....

                                                              1. re: Waquoit

                                                                I think it's what you're used to- I like a char dog. I find Blackie's boiled-in-oil dogs to be, well, icky in every respect, texture, flavor, etc. The Glenwood, however, sounds promising.

                                                                As for the condiment stand- after watching the people paw through it, the flies, etc. It was just unappetizing in the extreme. I'm not against "help yourself" condiments, plenty of places I frequent have them, but there is a little thing called a health code for a reason.

                                                                Perhaps I need a grilled Hummel to appreciate it's apparent virtues.

                                                                1. re: cheesemonger

                                                                  How about The Ranch on N main St in Hartford

                                                          2. Burger Bar in South Norwalk has all sorts of dogs. From the ordinary, plain, with chili etc, to the somewhat strange, thanksgiving dogs, BLT dogs... And they use these big hot dogs. They're really good. I can a relatively picky hot dog eater.

                                                            The burgers & house cut fried are pretty damn good too!!

                                                            1. Kurts Muckes Hot Dogs Torrington Ct Rt 8 Exit 46 Open 1030- 3pm 19th year in business. Check it out!

                                                              1. Clamps in New Milford
                                                                http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Write...

                                                                Gooseboro Drive-In, Bantam
                                                                http://chefmoz.org/United_States/CT/B...

                                                                1. I freaking LOVE Burger Bar in Norwalk! One of my favorite upscale burger/dog joints.

                                                                  And, Rawley's in Fairfield makes an outstanding dog and a decent burger. They have this Mel's Hellish Relish that is the bomb. Their fries are fresh and tasty, too.

                                                                  1. I would love to recommend Heavenly Hot Dogs in Torrington. They are on the top of East Main St route 202 in the Blockbuster plaza across from the new Target plaza. They are very friendly people, have great hot dogs and absolutely the BEST chili dog I have ever had. Plus they have an amazing array of condiments with a hot relish that is to die for. They operate out of a revamped, very colorful camper decorated with angels and other really neat things. They should be opening soon for the spring , summer, fall season and I can't wait!

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: cltcgirl

                                                                      Oh yes I love heavenly hot dogs. Great, great place. Chili and the hot relish are fabulous!

                                                                      1. re: twiztwaz

                                                                        Heavenly is open for the season!!! HOORAY. I snapped a shot of the menu but I don't think you can see it that well. But you might be able at least to see the huge amount of condiments available for no extra charge.

                                                                         
                                                                    2. Sheiks in Torrington, only on saturdays with Kraut and guldens. yum
                                                                      or gooseboro in bantam with a coffee milkshake and fries. oh do I miss CT!!!
                                                                      Texas doesn't know the meaning of a hot dog.

                                                                      1. What about Dragon Dogs in Old Saybrook. They have all the wonderful hotdogs but he also has invented a Lobster Dog. The chef, Jack Flaws opens the stand in May and is open through the summer. It is located at the front of Harbor One Marina. The Lobster Dog is to die for!!!!

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: dawnmarie

                                                                          Do check out the place in Windsor, hot dog truck parked at dale drug on rt 75, by far the BEST dog I have ever had. Wednesday they do a burger that will make you fall over.

                                                                        2. My favorite local brand is Martin Rossols, located in New Britian. I am not sure which restaurants/stands sell them, I usually buy them direct or at Stew Leonard's. They're delicious!

                                                                          1. Jumbo Hebe Nationals at any Costco grill... served in a great bun, plus a soda ... all for 1.50.

                                                                            Don't underestimate.... despite the "unlocal" aspect... really really tasty.

                                                                            1. I can vouch for Rosco's in Hartford being really tasty. I only had room for a single dog because I was doing other foodie stuff with a friend in the city but after one bite I was blown away by how good it was. I'm going back soon, I'm thinking about a stop this weekend.

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: TastyNewEngland

                                                                                Definitely go back on an empty stomach. There's no better beef and pork dog than Thumann's, which is served there. It's prepared perfectly, and although it's great with just mustard, the chili and other homemade toppings are excellent.