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Good hot dogs

swenson_c Apr 16, 2009 09:23 AM

I'm looking for a good hot dog joint in DC or NOVA, besides Ben's Chili Bowl. Any suggestions?

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    Elyssa RE: swenson_c Apr 16, 2009 09:49 AM

    Would a hot dog more on the gourmet end work? If so try the chicago style mini hot dogs at PS7.

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      BookGuy RE: swenson_c Apr 16, 2009 10:31 AM

      The Vienna Inn is on the low end of things but their chili dogs are excellent and they are also on the bar menu of the Del Merei Grill in Del Ray due to a family connection.

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        Sean D RE: swenson_c Apr 16, 2009 11:23 AM

        Sigh...I feel for you, Swenson. This is another sad deficiency in the Greater Washington food scene. We have nothing even approaching the hot dog cultures of NYC, Chicago, Ohio, etc.

        Honestly...I can't think of a single place where you can compelling good, or unique hot dog.

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          reiflame RE: swenson_c Apr 16, 2009 02:53 PM

          Are you object to grilling yourself? If not, head to Wegmans and buy Sahlen's brand. They are by and far the best dog on the market.

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            sharonlouk RE: swenson_c Apr 16, 2009 07:55 PM

            It's not a hot dog joint per se, but I enjoy the hot dogs at Five Guys. They split them down the middle and put them on the grill. I add the grilled onions and mustard and I'm a happy camper.

            1 Reply
            1. re: sharonlouk
              MarietteB RE: sharonlouk Jun 3, 2009 02:15 PM

              I have to agree - I love the 5 Guys burger - but I always end up with th grilled dog - I like raw onions, mustard and jalepeno peppers and I am also a happy camper!

            2. Gonzocook RE: swenson_c Apr 17, 2009 05:54 AM

              In Arlington, Heidelberg Bakery on Lee Hwy has a sandwich counter operating at lunchtime with four or five varieties of wurst. They're not as cheap as as a street vendor dog, running about $6, IIRC, but they're darned good.

              Other possibles in Arlington are Hard Times Cafe (Clarendon) for chili dogs or the Weenie-Beenie drive-in in Shirlington for chili half-smokes (and, surprisingly good NC barbecue sandwiches). (I say "surprisingly" because they have no other BBQ on the menu.)

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                nickdanger RE: swenson_c Apr 17, 2009 08:45 AM

                Like OPs have said, we lack the classic joint or lunch counter for dogs, with the exception of Ben's. I second the Heidelberg and Hard Times recs. if you're in Rockville MD area, Urban BBQ and Urban Burger have brats as well as smothered corn dogs.

                1. Gonzocook RE: swenson_c Apr 21, 2009 01:06 PM

                  Ah, forgot one. As Washingtonian reminds me, Johnny's Half Shell has a great but upscale dog. I haven't been to their Capitol Hill location, but when they were on P St. the dog was great--the match between meat and bread was fantastic. Do you want to pay nearly $10 for a hot dog, though?

                  1. monkeyrotica RE: swenson_c Apr 22, 2009 06:47 AM

                    Weenie Beenie does good halfsmokes. Cheap. Burger Delite also. Both carryout only.

                    Second the Vienna Inn, as well as the Hard Times recommendation. Excellent footlong chili dog. Reminded me of the Dairy Queen footlongs of my youth.

                    Washingtonian did a piece on DC hotdogs.


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                      Crocken RE: swenson_c Jun 2, 2009 04:10 PM

                      if you are willing to make a trek to MD for a GREAT hotdog, Ann's Daricreme in Glen Burnie is probably one of the best/mostuniquesingular hotdogs in the country.

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: Crocken
                        cb1 RE: Crocken Jun 3, 2009 09:05 AM

                        I'll second that! Ann's is great. Double footlong, chilli, cheese......I'm hungry

                        1. re: Crocken
                          Sean D RE: Crocken Jun 3, 2009 12:40 PM

                          For anyone unfamiliar with Ann's Daricreme - they cook their hotdogs by deep frying them. This is not a bad thing, but wish they would leave them in the oil just a bit longer. (I've been to places that deep fry their hotdogs. It's best when they get a bit of crust on them.)

                          1. re: Sean D
                            monkeyrotica RE: Sean D Jun 4, 2009 03:15 AM

                            Indeed. The Jersey hotdog place that deepfries them has three grades: in-and-outer (lightly deepfried), ripper (the skin starts to rip), and cremator (totally shredded and almost porkrind crispy). I'll have to check this out next time I"m near Bmore.

                            1. re: monkeyrotica
                              alkapal RE: monkeyrotica Jun 4, 2009 04:32 AM

                              oh, i'm gonna try that cremator version when i have the deep fryer out next time!

                              1. re: monkeyrotica
                                nickdanger RE: monkeyrotica Jun 11, 2009 12:22 PM

                                You're talking about Rutt's Hutt in Fort Lee, which mnay NY/NJers feel has gone down hill.

                                1. re: nickdanger
                                  monkeyrotica RE: nickdanger Jun 12, 2009 03:50 AM

                                  So where do NY/NJers go for their deepfried hotdogs?

                            2. re: Crocken
                              flavrmeistr RE: Crocken Jun 12, 2009 06:33 AM

                              Let's not forget Polock Johnny's in Halethorpe and Lexington Market. Get the large Polish with chili, cheese and onion or just with that red relish/sauce they have. Awesome.

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                              lukeinva RE: swenson_c Jun 3, 2009 09:56 AM

                              One must consider DC's roots. NYC and Chicago were populated by settlers direct from Europe (and all over) who established neighborhoods, Polish, Germans, Italians, etc etc and brought with them ethnic foods like brats and sausages and delis and Italian dishes, et al. Whereas DC was staked out by the govt founders seeking to create a District; a place to establish the seat of the US govt. That's my theory.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: lukeinva
                                alkapal RE: lukeinva Jun 4, 2009 04:33 AM

                                yeah, and all they brought from their home country was a culture of hot air.

                                1. re: alkapal
                                  gatorfoodie RE: alkapal Jun 5, 2009 05:25 AM

                                  Shouldn't that mean we have good popcorn or something?

                                  1. re: gatorfoodie
                                    alkapal RE: gatorfoodie Jun 5, 2009 04:25 PM


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                                NoVA RE: swenson_c Jun 4, 2009 03:41 PM

                                Windy City Red Hots! A few weeks ago someone posted about this place...a cart that makes an authentic Chicago dog out in Ashburn. The husband and wife owners are Chicago natives who relocated to NoVa. Have not ventured out there yet, but folks say it's the genuine article (celery salt and all)...and delicious. They have a website with location, hours, etc. Enjoy!

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