Best Bay Area Hot Dog
Who has the best hot dog? The most regionally authentic hot dog? No imitators, just the real SF/Bay Area deal. I know Top Dog up by the UCB probably gets a lot of recommendations, but who else can think of a great place?
I was inspired to ask this after watching a PBS special tonight and noticing the difference between NYC, Chicago, Atlanta, Midwest, and West Coast dogs.
Speaking of the WC, I know from tales and long drunken stories of a famous place in LA that doesn't exist anymore called the Okey Dog, which was a hang out for all the late 70's/early 80's punk rockers who had a taste for hot dogs smothered in chili and cheese and wrapped up in a tortilla.
Kasper's Original Hot Dog is THE California Dog. Not to be confused with Caspers with a C hot dogs. This is the little red shack on 4521 Telegraph Avenue near Jack in the Box and McDonalds.
After moving from the East Coast I was shocked to get a dog with fresh tomato and cheese. Quality is quality.
The place still retains it's integrity even after Big Harry had a stroke. The son has expanded the line with another hot dog and added a web site.
The web site:
The following story describes Kasper's perfectly.
re: Stanley Stephan
Ms. Eng who wrote the story about kaspar's history pointed out to me that the link does not connect to her story which it was intended to do. It is a great story so here's hopefully the corrected link.
I always love to know the history of restuarants. I found Kaspars either through an article in the Examiner or Chronicle when Big Harry was still alive. I was happy / sorry to read the story about the updates to Kaspar's. The original story I read was lost so it was great to be able to find a copy of the story. I was sorry to hear Harry died. I've been to kaspar's a number of times since Harry had his stroke and I've been reluctant to ask his son how he was doing.
Does anyone remember Chris and John's? It was a burger/hotdog stand across the street from Oakland Tech on Broadway in Oakland. Must have closed twenty years ago. They had the best hotdogs....with all the fixins, including fresh tomatoes. My idea of a great pigout (that's what we used to call a chowdown in high school) was a Chris and John's hot dog followed by a visit to Maria's Bavarian Cheesecake next door....
I've always been fond of Top Dog, but only the original on Telegraph Ave. I think its a Berkeley alumni thing....
Oki Dog does still exist, actually. I just drove by it a couple weeks ago. It's on Pico just west of La Brea. In the Bay Area, my favorites are Top Dog and Kasper's.
There's a truly tacky-looking little hot dog lunch counter in a warehouse district in San Rafael. The owner is a very pleasant fellow and he serves big doggies with lots of different fixin's at a hunger-cure-for-cheap price. He also has hot links and Polish. The sausages cook in some kind of metal contraption, and it looks like it does a combination of steaming and oven baking. The sausages do not suffer from washed-outness (like Costco's do) or underdone or overdoneness (like Orange Julius's can).
The chili dog is my favorite.
Jimbos Hot Dogs
4288 Redwood Highway
San Rafael, CA 94903
This stretch of Redwood Hwy is a frontage road between the Terra Linda and Lucas Valley exits.