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Varsity Chili Dogs in Atlanta

kevin May 23, 2007 08:44 PM

are these really that good? also are the dogs all beef, all pork, or mixture of the two? and also is there a natural casing, in other words a snap to the dog?

  1. l
    LaneyHaney Feb 10, 2009 03:44 AM

    I've been eating at The Varsity since '68 and disagree that the food has taken a downturn. However, I generally order the chili slaw dog, fries, and Frosted Orange. Can't speak for the rest of the menu.

    Having traveled throughout the USA, I love all the regional variations of the hot dog, but The Varsity is still my #1 pick.

    3 Replies
    1. re: LaneyHaney
      jellybear Feb 10, 2009 04:29 AM

      Any place that does that much volume the quality is bound to suck and that is what the Varsity does big time and besides that its filthy.

      1. re: jellybear
        onesawb Feb 10, 2009 06:10 PM

        The Varsity Is the Epitome of chili Dog The onion rings are perfect I've had hot dogs all over the country,and I really like Chicago dogs But the varsity in Atlanta and Nuway in Macon are the absolute bestyou can get.

        1. re: onesawb
          penny35 Feb 14, 2009 08:48 AM

          I love the Varsity, it is what it is. Stadium food minus the stadium. If you don't want the dog, try the cheese burger with pimiento cheese and def. the onion rings.

    2. d
      dak Aug 22, 2007 12:06 AM

      The Varsity had the best hot dogs on the planet until Frank Gordy died in 1983. He was the founder. His daughter took the place over and destroyed all the good recipes. The french fries and onion rings now taste like they were fried in water - no taste at all. The wonderful chili on the hot dogs is now unfit to eat. I ate there for 40 years and loved it. But the last time I went there, I couldn't eat anything they had on the menu - it was AWFUL!!!

      1. dallen May 30, 2007 08:55 AM

        There is NO snap to the dog. IMHO, the snap is what differentiates a great dog from the others.

        1. l
          laurendlewis May 30, 2007 04:49 AM

          Not sure if the dogs at the restaurant are the same as their catering arm, but we have had a Varsity dinner at our synagogue which indicates they are all beef.

          3 Replies
          1. re: laurendlewis
            kevin May 30, 2007 11:39 AM

            that's awesome, varsity dogs at syongogue. i presume they're not kosher, but all beef sounds good now.

            1. re: kevin
              laurendlewis May 30, 2007 01:41 PM

              I personally brought a PB&J for the evening, but everyone else had a blast!

            2. re: laurendlewis
              lewyn Jun 4, 2007 08:00 AM

              The varsity dogs at synagogue are probably not the same as the ones you get at the Varsity. They have a catering arm which does kosher on request.

            3. e
              erowan May 28, 2007 08:13 PM

              I don't know that the Varsity has ever released the specifics of their recipe. I do get a good laugh out of the fact that they advertise on-site that they fry in no cholesterol oil. Whatever the case, wash it down with a Frosted Orange and Fried Pie - can't get more southern that that!


              1 Reply
              1. re: erowan
                sarge May 29, 2007 03:23 PM

                Frankly, I think they are some of the poorest quality hot dogs on the market, but I still get one now and then, but they are not in a league with vienna, sabrett, or nathans. They are more like what you get at a carnival.

                But the FO is fantastic

              2. g
                gravyhound May 27, 2007 07:29 AM

                the onion rings are the real treasure of the varsity for me, but my family members who live out of state put chili and slaw dogs atop their must do list whenever they're in town. i've never heard any discussion of the actual dog - only the need to eat them and how many to get. . .

                2 Replies
                1. re: gravyhound
                  nyfoodjoe May 27, 2007 07:34 AM

                  I have heard that to be considered a great dog, it has to have the bite, or snap of the skin(and obviously great meat filling). But I am always amazed at the local traditions that take hold that sort of defy culinary convention. I was in Cinncinatti(sp?) lately and what they call chili is certainly not what anyone from any other part of the USA would call chili.

                  1. re: nyfoodjoe
                    himynameischuck May 28, 2007 08:10 PM

                    I just had a chili dog, a slaw dog and rings. They were fantastic. The dogs, buns and condiment melt together in a completely ungourmet ooze of whitebreadiness. The rings, not fresh, had soaked up enough grease to prevent the adherence of any excess condiment, thus making the ten packets of ketchup and mustard I had squeezed an exercise in futility. I felt terrible for thirty minutes after but it was worth it. At least once every few years.

                2. carolinadawg May 24, 2007 07:58 AM

                  They are your typical "southern" hot dog...no casing. Not sure what they are made of! LOL

                  I think they're great, but I have a nostalgic view of the place. In general, The Varsity seems to push people into 3 camps...those who have been going there for years and love the nostalgia, those who are new to the place, but buy into the nostagia and history, and those who just don't get it and don't like it. To each his own...

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: carolinadawg
                    designbot May 30, 2007 08:00 AM

                    I'm in the third camp. I thought the food was terrible. Basically, go down to the supermarket and get the cheapest white-bread buns, the cheapest mystery-meat generic wieners, and steam 'em till they're soggy. That's the Varsity.

                    1. re: designbot
                      gmcfry Feb 25, 2009 02:04 PM

                      Well, I guess you just don't get it! It's not the individual ingredients, it's the sum of all the ingredients as they come together on that red and white plate! These are not smoked sausages or bratwurst or anything like that, so they shouldn't be compared to them. They are scrumptious chili dogs like no other on the planet! That's OK though, we won't hold that against you! You could always try a chili dog at the Sonic or Dairy Queen!

                  2. i
                    inmybackpages May 24, 2007 06:25 AM

                    I don't know about the ingredients or casing, but beware the Heavy Dog...I ordered it expecting chili + slaw + onions (the works, I guess) and what I got was a hot dog in a lake of chili.

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