Excerpt from HOT DOGS! Get yer HOT DOGS!
“Shut up, you big slob. Did you pay for that weenie you eating?”
Hi everyone! It’s been a few days of pop philosophising here, what with all the discussions of what is and isn’t good art, and I wanted to do something a little lighter today. This is only an excerpt from a much, much better version of this that’s for paying subscribers only. If you like what you’re reading here please consider subscribing. It’s cheap, y’all!, and please tell someone about this here newsletter if you like it. Hell, even give em a subscription if you’re so inclined, eh?
I came across this diagram on Twitter yesterday:
...And frankly (BOOYA!), I have a lot to say. I am gonna start by saying this could be a lot more robust of a list. Where is the Toronto street dog? Where is the Lucky Dog from New Orleans? Where is Rochester’s (is it Rochester’s, or is it all of upper New York?) white hot? There are a lot of hot dogs out there, and they’re not all represented here. Hey, you know what? Maybe there’s a better infographic I could work with...let’s check.
Hold on real quick.
Holy shit, that took me nearly an hour. There are, in fact, other infographics, but the one that actually did include the white hot (for example) was really hard to read and I’m not trying to give that much of a shit. Besides, I really like the aesthetic of this particular hot dog chart (the one above). SO, thank god I found this expansion on that graphic, right?
Behold the chart we’ll be dealing with in all its splendor:
Before we begin, I want to let y’all know a few things:
I’m not an expert on food or hot dogs or literally anything. And even if I were...hell, especially if I were, that means nothing. If something tastes good or sounds good, it’s good. We’ve discussed this before. I’m just going with my own gut on this shit. (Think of this as a slightly more well thought out version of our president handling racial strife and revolution in the streets during a pandemic that threatens to close us off from the rest of the world for decades).
I haven’t had all these hot dogs
I AM from Chicago, where hot dogs are Very Important, but this is not just some trojan horse bullshit where I come in and pronounce Chicago the best. I have an open mind when it comes to this stuff, as I hope you’ll see.
Please refer to the chart above as I’ll be going through it in order. I’m discovering some of these for the first time right now, so I’ll be referencing the chart a lot. If you get lost, yo! that’s why the chart is there.
Okay, so, since there doesn’t seem to be a northern NY white hot, nor a New Orleans Lucky dog on here, I’m gonna start with those from memory.
Upper New York
The white hot was just okay. I remember it being spicy in a way that was kind of interesting and then got overwhelming, but not in a like “this is too hot” sort of way. More in a “too much turmeric” (or whatever it was) sort of way. I seem to recall they dress this with some kinda boiled vegetable slop, which makes it messy. I think this hotdog is worth trying. I will get another if I ever am able to travel again, but I will not enjoy it very much, nor will I make a strong recommendation to whomever I’m traveling with that they should try it. This is in stark contrast to…
LUCKY DOG! Yo! I don’t know if these are still around, but they were the best. First made globally famous by Ignatius G Reilly, the New Orleans Lucky Dog and its iconic cart is something to behold. I always go with the andouille with a strip of mustard and some raw onion and I’m never disappointed. “Those are gross,” people say. “You’re in the best food town in the world! THAT’S what you’re eating???” they say. “Rats swim in the water in those carts. Everyone knows it,” they say. Whatever. I love a Lucky Dog. Don’t care. I wish you dorks were cooler, to be honest.
Okay. I’ll now let the graphic take over and just give my thoughts.
This is, frankly, almost exactly the same as the Toronto dog, so consider this an entry for both, but ignore the things I say about New York dogs being hygienically questionable with regards to Toronto.
New York hot dogs are, first and foremost, hygienically questionable. That’s their main trait. However, if you can get past that, they’re fucking gooood. I think the drool they put on it (referred to on our graphic as ‘onion sauce’) is kinda counterproductive to the whole affair, but it doesn’t take me out of the game. I can easily house a grip of these after kicking back a couple of sidewalk beers and watching a few lively stop and frisks. Overall, this is a good workaday hotdog, for sure.
This kinda seems like bullshit to me, but not for the reasons you’re thinking. I mean, Sriracha? Seattle? These things are too new to America to have any sort of storied hot dog history, right? What’s next? The CHAZ hotdog topped with Quibi ads?? Anyway, that being said, I can’t hate on this dog. I like raw jalapeno and sriracha and I LOVE that they’re cooling it off with some cream cheese (which is my favorite condiment, as we discussed in the condiment roll out episode of this very news source). I don’t know how I feel about a brat in there though. Plain brats are kinda lacking to me, but this is so swimming in heat that it’s probably fine. The cabbage seems like a cool touch, as in literally I bet it cools the whole experience off a bit. Overall, would eat for sure.
Jesus fucking christ. This looks like two kids reading a book under a blanket or something. Let’s see what’s up here….
Okay, I like all the stuff in theory but what the fuck is it in? That’s just too much goddamned bread. It also kinda seems like this is really just a hot dog torta, which, to be clear, I’m cool with. But it kinda seems like it barely qualifies as a hot dog. If your question is “is a hot dog a sandwich?” um, this one is.
Welp, the only time I’ve ever been to Tijuana, I went to a bar where the urinals were just buckets. There were no pipes coming from said buckets, just buckets of brimming hot piss mixture. SO, to say that I’d be a little sketched out by eating a food as...democratized as a hot dog in Tijuana is a bit of an understatement. That said, let’s see what we got here...nah. This ain’t for me, dawg. It seems messy and a little too bold, flavor wise. There’s nothing tying the room together, man. Bacon is cool and so is jalapeno, but this strikes me as not good. Also, I don’t like grilled peppers, which I assume is the ingredient intended to give this a little bit of lube. No thanks. I’ll just have 2 tickets to the strip club where they harvest my organs at the end of the night and I’ll go ahead and eat when I get back to LA. Speaking of!
Hmmm. First, the whole thing about a footlong is supposed to be that it’s bigger than the bun. A foot long bun is too much bread, yo. But so far, I’m okay with this. I like chopped onion and I like mustard and if the relish isn’t too sweet, we’re good. But I don’t like ketchup. I know this sounds like a thing with me being from Chicago and this being about hot dogs, but I can assure you, I don’t think ketchup is good on ANYTHING. I’m not trying to throw down any gauntlets here and if you love ketchup on a dog served in a full loaf of bread, this bullshit hotdog that almost certainly costs like $45 may be right up your alley. Okay, moving on…
I really hope I’m mistaken, but is this some sort of Mexican accent gag they’re pulling with the name of this? Like, this is how a Mexican guy with a strong accent would say “Dodger?” If so, um...I don’t know that that kind of thing is still in style, Cochese. Sabes lo que quiero decir? Anyhoo, once we pass the light dusting of racism let’s see what’s up. Okay, still too much bun, but this seems like something I’d fuck with. Nacho cheese instead of ketchup and jalapenos instead of relish? I’m in. It’s like a hotdog and nachos mashup, which, as the kids say, I’m pretty here for.
Wow. Um, I’ll try this. I’d even try dipping it in ketchup because that’s what they say to do and the whole premise is so wild. Would I like it? Probably. Would I order two? Doubtful.
Ew. No. No fucking way. This is terrible. Ketchup and pineapple in the same thing? Fuck outa here. A boiled EGG? And then some mayo just to make sure that every possible appetite is grossed out by this? I don’t want to make any wild statements like “cocaine makes you think anything is a good idea” but um...this hotdog was not created by anyone who was gonna need to eat anything anytime soon.
Gimme a fucking break. This rules. Sweet little buddy. Let’s get you into my belly and then back to the sea where you can live like the king of the mollusks that you are. Big fan of this guy. More foods should be things you feel mean for eating, IMO.
Loving this one. German sausages are so good and the complete lack of bun in this diagram only makes it more appealing after that Dodger Dog fiasco. German potato salad? German mustard? German frankfurters? I’m fuckin IN. Put this one into my veins. Fun fact, every single German truck driver looks like a pervert that used to roadie for the Scorpions at some point and every single one of them are always standing at the coffee bars in German gas stations wearing leather pants, drinking tiny coffees and eating this exact plate of food (but usually it’s accompanied by a spherical hard roll that could double as a pool ball). No exaggeration.
Hmmmm.. I don’t love cole slaw, but I guess in this case it’s maybe okay. Is the chili spicy? That really would make all the difference as far as I’m concerned. If it is, I’m in, I guess. Nothing fun about this hot dog or this review, just like the actual Carolinas. HEYO!
This sounds fine. Montreal also makes shockingly great pizza and bagels, so there’s no doubt in my mind they can take on the hot dog and crush it. If only they could figure out deodorant they would be unstoppable.
I call bullshit on this hot dog. I have been to Michigan. The true Michigan dog is the coney. This is like a fake ass half stepping coney. That said, I’d eat it. Seems okay, but I feel like this is like the Kid Rock to the Coney’s Eminem, touted by hicks as being definitive Michigan when everyone knows the real shit is in Detroit, but that’s just a guess. Mom’s spaghetti, and so forth. Anyway, what’s next?
I AM Italian. I’m even an Italian citizen. However, as I mentioned, I don’t love bell peppers and I also don’t like classic Italian sausage (for a great sausage that happens to be italian but isn’t what you think of when you think “Italian Sausage,” check out luganega, which is fucking superb), and once you throw ketchup into this shit, I’m out. Oh! Wait, this just says it’s just a deep fried hotdog? I gotta start reading a little more carefully. That changes everything! Still, no. No grazie. Also, this shit ain’t italian. Show me where in Italy they’re deep frying hot dogs and I’ll show you an American fatso themed restaurant called Gli Stati Uniti Grassi or something.
This is essentially a chili cheese dog. It’s weird that the Michigan dog on this list comes with mustard and the coney does not. The coney, in my experience, ALWAYS has mustard, but whatever. If you’re too poor for the coney, you can always just get the loose meat sandwich which is like some kinda really watery sloppy joe on a hotdog bun also with onions and mustard. Fun fact: When Slapstick (my highschool band) broke down in Detroit, we had very little money and this dude Tony from a Detroit band called the Parka Kings rescued us and brought us to a coney dog place where we all ate loose meat sandwiches exclusively for days because they were like fifty cents a piece or something. By the time our van was repaired, we had many fast friends in Detroit, we would collectively never be able to look at a loose meat sandwich again and, most importantly, we had destroyed our colons and thus, taken many years off all our lives.
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