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SPEED'S Not the SAME

h
hlerm2 Aug 28, 2009 03:54 PM

Had a dog at lunchtime and could barely bite through the cassing. Anyone else notice the change. I used to luv this place, but no more, just not worth it

  1. f
    fishmanator Aug 29, 2009 10:50 PM

    I have to agree. The place just does not live up to the hype. Dry dog with weird cranberry relish, for 8 bucks.

    4 Replies
    1. re: fishmanator
      PaulB Aug 30, 2009 04:20 AM

      Um, dogs are $7 and there is no cranberry in the relish.

      1. re: PaulB
        f
        fishmanator Aug 30, 2009 05:54 AM

        The “loaded” version is topped with a spicy brown and honey mustard mix, barbecue sauce, cranberry relish, chopped Vidalia onions and a chili-like sauce. To create a cavity to hold all those toppings, Gale slices the top of the hot dog length wise and sits it in a toasted sub roll made by Quinzani Bakery of Boston.

        Sorry I got the price wrong. I remembered giving him a $10 for a hotdog, soda and tip.

        1. re: fishmanator
          PaulB Aug 30, 2009 06:27 AM

          Based on a lone glob in my last dog I thought it was a less sweet grape jelly in there, it may be cranberry as you say. I always order them loaded, the Qunizanis roll is a good choice (and no secret as dogs to go are wrapped in the Quinzani bags).

          Is it wrong to want a Speeds dog at 9:30 am on a Sunday morning? ;-)

      2. re: fishmanator
        c
        Carty Aug 31, 2009 02:44 PM

        I like Chow best when people share their experiences. The pissing contest about who is 'right' about inherently subjective assessments, not so much.

        I had my first Speed's dog a couple of weeks ago, it was quite good. Most remarkable to me was the size of the dog itself. Natural casing good, dog good, toppings good, grilled bun good, eating in a parking lot with truckers good. The whole thing worked.

        Great discussions on other threads here about why Speed's is special ...

      3. Delhiwala Aug 29, 2009 02:26 PM

        I totally disagree with your conclusuion that Speeds is not worth it any more.. The Speeds hot dogs remain fabulous, especially if you get them "loaded" with all the sauses.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Delhiwala
          h
          hlerm2 Aug 29, 2009 03:51 PM

          you got lucky. ate speed dog's for 15 years, and the new one's just don't do it.

          1. re: hlerm2
            BarmyFotheringayPhipps Aug 29, 2009 04:18 PM

            Perhaps they're not to your tastes, but yours definitely is the minority opinion on this. I actually feel that on a dog-to-dog basis, the G&W beats the Pearl handily.

            1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
              h
              hotdoglover Aug 29, 2009 05:03 PM

              I've never been to Speed's, but have tasted both the Pearl dog and the Grote & Weigel beef. Here in N.J. many of the Texas Weiner places use a G&W beef/pork frank. There is only one place near me that uses the natural casing beef frank. It is smaller than what Speed's uses being eight to a pound.

              I really don't like relish on a beef dog or a sweet marinande. I usually have a natural casing beef dog with just mustard. Taste is subjective and I would say both are quality dogs. In N.J. it's rare to see dogs sold loose behind the deli counter. At a Stop & Shop near me I can get Pearl dogs loose in the summer, so I get them often. But I do prefer the beef dog from Grote & Weigel to the Pearl. Both are very good, but G&W is a little less salty. It has a tighter casing (which isn't important to me), is less greasy and has a wider depth of flavors.

        2. t
          T.Clark Aug 29, 2009 11:38 AM

          Recent Article for anyone who missed it in the patriot ledger food section, which sucks btw. http://www.patriotledger.com/lifestyl...

          4 Replies
          1. re: T.Clark
            threedogs Aug 29, 2009 12:22 PM

            Thanks for posting the link, T. So Speed is totally out of the picture, now. Well, guess he deserves a rest from it all - he must be what, in his 90's now?

            I haven't been there since Greg took over, but I'd love to get over there. Looks like he's really dedicated to great dogs - need to find out for myself!

            1. re: threedogs
              BarmyFotheringayPhipps Aug 29, 2009 12:31 PM

              Speed has been retired for ages. I believe this is Greg's third year running the stand solo.

              1. re: threedogs
                jgg13 Aug 29, 2009 03:12 PM

                From TFA, he's 88

              2. re: T.Clark
                b
                burny carbo Aug 30, 2009 04:39 AM

                If you click on the 'related photos' link, those two girls are my 'chowpups'. I was proud to have them included in the article about such an important Boston institution!

              3. k
                kamac Aug 29, 2009 11:16 AM

                Funny you should post this, last week I stopped here and immediately recognized something wrong. The dog seemed chewy and the relish even sweeter than before.
                Its really not a treat anymore.

                6 Replies
                1. re: kamac
                  threedogs Aug 29, 2009 12:23 PM

                  Chewy as in 'natural casings'?

                  1. re: threedogs
                    BarmyFotheringayPhipps Aug 29, 2009 12:26 PM

                    Indeed.

                    I am of the camp that says the new dog is far superior to the Pearl dog that Speed's used to use. Greg did not make this change lightly: he auditioned a number of different butchers before making the switch.

                    1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
                      threedogs Aug 29, 2009 12:38 PM

                      I figured he did from the sound of the article and what I heard before, too. As much as I always loved my pilgrimage to Speed's, the amount of salt always was too much for me (I don't use a whole lot of salt in my diet). So that would be a real plus for me. And I love, love, LOVE the snap of real casings...

                      Looking at the Grote and Weigel website - ""Low Salt", no sugar nor sweeteners, no fillers, no flavor enhancers nor artificial coloring. As close to all natural as can be."

                      OK, now I'm getting really hungry. Put together a 24 hr sauerkraut recipe, going to cook a corned beef I've been brining all week, making pizza tonight... and now I'm craving a Speed's dog..

                      1. re: threedogs
                        t
                        tysonmcneely Aug 31, 2009 10:42 AM

                        Yeah, you can definitely tell you adhere to a strict low sodium diet with foods such as corned beef and sauerkraut ; )

                        1. re: tysonmcneely
                          threedogs Aug 31, 2009 06:33 PM

                          Hahahaha - but I corned my own beef (less salt than usual) AND I found a great, no-salt, 24 hr sauerkraut recipe (hint: a capsule of acidolphilus added does the trick).

                          :D

                    2. re: threedogs
                      t
                      terrystu Aug 29, 2009 06:10 PM

                      I've always preferred natural casings, but speed's new dogs are much tougher to bite through than before.
                      I always thought they used to have just the right amount of "snap".

                  2. s
                    sinned61 Aug 28, 2009 09:46 PM

                    Go to Freds Franks in Wakefield and get a PEARL!!!! The BEST!

                    1. MC Slim JB Aug 28, 2009 04:40 PM

                      The new guy switched the brand of frank last year from Pearl to Grote & Weigel. It's very similar: a 1/2-lb, natural-casing, all-beef frank. I like it just as well as the old one, and as he hasn't cut any corners on the original Speed's formula, I'm enjoying them overall as much as ever. I get mine with everything, but find I'm preferring it with a little less of the house-made relish, which is very sweet.

                      http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: MC Slim JB
                        t
                        Torolover Aug 28, 2009 06:35 PM

                        Is it OK to order a Speed's dog, medium rare? I like it charred on the outside, and juicy in the inside like a medium rare Ribeye.

                        1. re: Torolover
                          MC Slim JB Aug 28, 2009 08:44 PM

                          Ha, ha, a medium-rare dog! I suppose you could ask for the external char, but the canonical Speed's technique isn't conducive to that outcome. As Ezra did in Days of Yore, Greg still simmers the dog in cider and brown sugar, smokes it a bit on a closed charcoal grill, slashes the casing lightly, bastes the dog with Speed's Special Sauce, and cooks it some more on an open charcoal grill. It isn't really charred all over. Maybe you could request "well done" or "blackened". Maybe bring your own crème brûlée torch?

                          http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                          1. re: MC Slim JB
                            l
                            lergnom Aug 28, 2009 09:37 PM

                            You can ask him to char it.

                            What it really needs is sriracha.

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