Appreciating all that makes America special

Food: Best Hot Dog (1)

Everyone has their favorite hole-in-the-wall hot dog shop. Leave a comment and tell me what's yours. Uploaded by food.lohudblogs.com.

First, let’s acknowledge this: The best hot dog in America is somewhere in your town. You know the place, maybe the rest of America has discovered it, maybe not. That’s why this post is the first in what will be a series over the coming years as we tell the rest of the country about the tasty dogs you can’t resist. So without further ado, here’s the first group of the best hot dogs in America.

1. Olneyville New York System, Providence. (Recommended by seriouseats.com) Just so you understand, “Olneyville New York System” is the name of the restaurant. Seriouseats.com describes their hot dog this way: “A Rhode Island tradition, the Hot Weiner is a grilled beef, pork, and veal natural casing wiener served ‘all the way’ on a steamed bun covered in meat sauce (don’t even think of calling it ‘chili’) with onions, mustard, and celery salt.”

2. The Red Hot, Tacoma. (Recommended by travelandleisure.com.) Of course, a red hot is another name for a hot dog in certain parts of the country. Travel and Leisure writes, “Try pairing The Chicago (an all-beef dog with the usual garnishes) with Everybody’s Brewing Local Logger Lager, or The Coney (an all-beef dog with mustard, chopped onions, and chili) with Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.”

Pink's, Los Angeles. Uploaded by ask.com.

3. Gene and Jude’s, River Grove, IL. (Recommended by Rachael RayGreat American Things, Jan. 30, 2010) Rachael had a 64-restaurant playoff to find the country’s best dog, and Gene and Jude’s won. The write-up says: “Onions are freshly cut every four hours, so everyone who works at Gene & Jude’s knows how to cut one. Add sweet relish, a squirt of bright yellow American mustard and plenty of tangy sport peppers—those Chicago must-haves—and you’ve got yourself one perfect dog.”

4. Pink’s Hot Dogs, Los Angeles. (Recommended by complex.com) I found Pink’s on several lists, so it’s a consensus choice as one of America’s best. Complex.com writes, “The lines are long and hard, the hot dogs seem to be named after celebrities, films, and shows almost completely at random, and the place has the natural cheesiness of a dingy Little Italy joint with twice as many photos of half smiling celebrities, but those 10″ smoked Hoffy’s are still somehow good enough to come out of all the pageantry relatively unscathed.”

5. Weenie Beenie, Arlington, VA. (Recommended by Forbes.com) Weenie Beenie has been a staple of haute cuisine, handheld style, in Arlington since 1950. Forbes writes, “You don’t come here for the ambience, you come here for their famous franks, which locals have sworn by for more than 60 years. Try the Half Smokes, split in two and grilled to a snap, or order the Chili Smoke with mustard and onions–extra chili.”

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