Miller & Kaspers Hot Dogs, Gastonia, NC
i was over in Gastonia @ Mary Jo's Cloth Store, so drove up to Main Street to hit a couple of antique stores. there on a corner was this little crisp looking hot dog joint. tables on the sidewalk outside, but inside, stools and some high shelves along the wall. five or so hot dog variations (counting maybe a bratwurst), but i just asked the owner what dog i should get, since it was my first time. he suggested the one he said was "all-the-way," the standard Dixie Dog (in my lexicon): mustard, onions, slaw, and chili. "we make our own chili, and we make our own slaw."
i was gonna get a Stewart's Orange Cream Soda, but the owner said i should have some other off-brand of orange soda, which was cane sugar and not corn syrup, like the soda.
he hand sliced the onions onto the bun @ the counter(which was kinda weird --- everybody else has pre-diced onions), and then went back into the kitchen and finished the dog.
and out came this over long dog, with the ends sticking out from the bun, delicious natural-casing dog, great slaw and chili, just the best hot dog i've had lately. can't wait to go back and try the rest to the menu.
the restaurant gets it's name from, or is a tribute to, Miller's Packing Co., in Oakland, California. that's where he gets his dogs. and the Kaspar the owner said was a famous hot dog stand in Oakland.
all in all, a spiffy little hot dog joint, an extremely friendly owner, and a wonderful hot dog experience. Tony's Ice Cream is the famous hot dog in Gastonia---i strongly suggest you get your dogs @ Miller & Kasper and then walk down to Tony's (it's right around the corner) for your ice cream dessert.
Omigosh, when I saw Miller & Kasper Hot Dogs flash by the footer of the page, I first thought, "where's Gastonia in Northern California?" It just didn't compute that these icons would have a home in the real NC, North Carolina.
Slicing the onions to order is exactly the way it was done at Kasper's, which has been closed for a number of years. The onions are sweeter and less strong that way. You owe it to yourself to try "Harry's Favorite", which is the way the sandwich would be served in Oakland, especially since we're in the height of tomato season. Here's my 12-year old post on the Original Kasper's in Oakland.
And Miller's natural casing dog! While we can still buy them to cook at home, hardly any hot dog stands use them. I am seriously jealous of you and your local spot.
Miller and Kasper
101 W. Main Ave.
Gastonia, NC 28052