Ben’s Kosher Deli

I am ferociously dedicated to hot dogs. My devotion to the weenie is undying. Just about 2 hours ago, I walked 20 minutes from work… to a deli I had no enthusiasm for… in 10 degree wind chilled temperatures… alone… simply to eat a hot dog, take pictures of it, and write about it. If I told that to a psychiatrist, I’d be in a straight jacket right now. In fact, I heard about this deli because I’m pretty sure a dude I never met before in an Uber pool told me about it. Thanks, guy. Regardless of the struggle and the insanity, I can honestly tell you all that this was indeed the highlight of my day and I’d like to tell you about it.

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Behold. The frank from Ben’s extremely commercial, Jewish, and Kosher (I guess that’s still Jewish) Deli. Now, you may remember that I wasn’t a fan of another big commercial touristy Jewish deli. (Katz’s Deli) So, I wasn’t incredibly enthused about Ben’s, especially since it is just south of Times Square on 38th and 7th. The place was a little bizarre, and definitely huge and commercial as I feared. However, when I told them I didn’t want to sit down and be waited on, and I only wanted a hot dog at the bar, they looked at me oddly, but were very accommodating. For $9.95 the hot dog comes with a drink, 3 different types of pickles, coleslaw, sauerkraut, and a huge knish. This is an epic deal, especially if you’re poor. A quick side note on the knish: I love this invention. Whichever lovely Jewish man with gorgeous curls invented it must have been a sweetheart.

Let’s get into the weenie details. The dog comes out with ‘kraut on the side and no toppings at all. They only have this odd spicy brown mustard that I’ve never seen, called Gold’s. It is no French’s yellow, but it is pretty good, and I’m a little surprised by it. I applied it with incredible precision, and even added kraut because I was feeling the whole NYC Jewish vibe. The bun is nicely toasted, but maybe a little on the light side, as in I couldn’t see any grill marks or bun browning. That’s a new one: “bun browning.” It sounds like something the Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders do as a pre-game warm up routine.

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Anyway, the first bite is marvelous, because the snap in this weenie is next level. You can tell there’s some real intestine on the outside of this bad boy and its glorious. There is a strong, 100% beef flavor, that is the tell-tale sign of a high quality frankfurter. This is a pure hot dog. If you are a plain weenie person, I think this would be on the top of your list. One unfortunate thing that happened to me, however, happened over time. Towards the end of eating the hot dog, I got a little tired of the snap. It was as if there was too much casing, and I had to chew through the sausage. This goes to prove that too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. Moderation in life is key. I didn’t think it could happen with the snap, but it did. I would definitely recommend this weenie, though. “One flaw a mistake does not make,” Yoda once said.

3.5 weenies

Is eating a hot dog alone at the bar of a huge time square deli sad? Am I a pathetic human being? To the haters I say nay. I say, in the words of Kelly Clarkson, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Unfortunately, eating a ton of hot dogs my eventually kill me. Eh. YOLO.

Cheers

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Asiadog

New York is huge on its “fusion” restaurants. For example, Jerry said to Jane, “Oh my god, you wouldn’t believe the Italian Tapas Japanese fusion restaurant I went to with Ryan the other day. It was fabulous!” I may not be as enthusiastic as Jerry, but I can get down with fusion. In middle school, I would always mix yellow mustard and mayonnaise to dip my chicken nuggets in. Fusion. White people and hip hop made the Beastie Boys. Fusion. Red wine and white wine mixed together made Rosé. Fusion. Now, a hot dog and Asian cuisine made Asiadog. I can get down with that.

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(Sadly, I had to lie in the previous paragraph. I never actually mixed mustard and mayonnaise, sorry.)

Asiadog has multiple locations. They can be found in Smorgasburg, Berg’N, Madison St. Eats, and others. I found them in their new Midtown location: Urban Space. In the picture above you can see the vast variety of weenies available here. Its super exciting. I’m actually quite sad to announce that I didn’t get the “Wangding”. Next time, I definitely will just because of that name. Instead, I asked for their best dog as always, and the surprisingly educated hot dog fixer said that she couldn’t decide between two. Lucky for me, I didn’t have to feel guilty about getting two. Bring on “The Vinh” and “The Mash”.

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On the right side, standing six foot four, packing 300 pounds of pickled carrot, jalapeno, and pate, the fiercely formidable, Vinh dog! And on the left side, standing five foot three, dragging in crumbs of potato chips from the couch, doused in ketchup in mustard, embarrassing his wife, the sluggishly familiar, Mash dog!

Yes, those were my first impressions. I was taken aback by the abundance of unique toppings adorning the Vinh dog, and rather unimpressed by crumpling potato chips on a hot dog as on the Mash. With time comes change. I went for the Vinh first, as my eager, hungry personality often does. The pickled carrots were delicious, but there were a lot of them. The spice was great, but maybe not enough. The hot dog itself, just like in the Mash, was great. Asiadog prides themselves in their organic sausages. They even offer a chicken dog and a veggie dog. Now, if you ask me neither of those are actually hot dogs, but if you’re one of those types, go for it. The beef weenies I got had no casing (hence no snap, which was a downside), but tasted fresh, pure, and flat out delicious. The bun could have been a little more toasted, or perhaps of higher quality. A Martin’s potato roll never hurts, y’all.

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At this point in time I was thinking Asiadog was just good. It was unique and interesting, but not the greatest taste. It was then when I bit into the Mash. God Bless. How could one know that crumpled potato chips, fancy ketchup, and spicy jalapeno mustard could join forces to create a weenie so fine, and so gracefully elegant? It was as if a Chinese man banged a gong in my mouth, then grabbed two fire hoses that spewed out jalapeno mustard and spicy ketchup and coated my tongue with the sauces, then summoned a majestic dragon of beef to fulfill my carnivorous desires. Yes, I realize that is an absurd simile, but whatever. Go eat the Mash dog at Asiadog. It is phenomenal. Because of this, I raised my rating up a notch. I also plan on going back and trying all of their combinations.

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P.S. Red wine and white wine don’t make Rosé, silly. But for now, here’s a few other fusions to think about. Jay Z and Beyonce fornicated and made Blue Ivy. Fusion. An Orange and a Grapefruit rolled into each other on a grassy knoll and made a Tangelo. Fusion. A pig’s intestine was filled with low quality meat and formed a hot dog. Fusion, my friends, fusion.

Cheers

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3 Sheets Saloon

3 Sheets Saloon is part of a family of bars that is known for attracting 21-24 year-olds for incredibly cheap drinks, beer games, and a college vibe. You’ll notice in the picture above the word “she” is taken out of the name. That’s no coincidence. This bar is always filled with dudes. Dude fest. Sausage fest. What a great place to serve a hot dog! This is an example of an incredible marketing plan and I’m buying into it. Pour me a 3 dollar Bobby Lewis and serve me up a weenie to eat among a bunch of other weenies. This is livin’.

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Above rests the 3 Sheets Dog with a side of tater tots. The mustard was self applied, but the bacon… oh, the bacon, was not. Here we have a bacon wrapped, deep fried, cheese-filled dog. Hopefully you all remember the wonderful Harlem Shake bacon wrapped Sonoran Dog. That was a huge winner, so I was hoping for the same here. Unfortunately this one lacked something just looking at it. It lacked freshness. I’m actually not sure how to describe it, but I can tell you that it just didn’t possess the quality or the craftsmanship that I’d hope. I then remembered where I was and forgot about these silly expectations I had. I was at the college watering hole. “Baby Got Back” still plays over the speakers here hourly. People don’t go here for quality, they go here for quantity. Oh my, was this quantity.

The first taste is the bacon. Cheap, awesome bacon that is somehow stuck to the weenie inside. The next taste is the mustard I chose to apply. (Note the waitress teased me when I asked if they had yellow mustard, she said yes, brought out a yellow container, and inside lay the spicy brown pond scum. Or, “dirty brown water trash.” – Workaholics) Soon after followed the sausage, which had a very smoky flavor to it that I very much enjoyed. Then, a gargantuan influx of melted white cheese. This is the kind of cheese that is so fake you can only call it American; even more fake than my favorite Kraft Singles. This cheese tastes like it could sit on a shelf for 3 years. Now that’s some cheese.

Nothing was incredibly memorable, but it did taste pretty damn good. How could anything be bad if you add fake cheese and bacon to it, though? I mean, it can’t be hard to succeed in the restaurant industry once you know this secret. Anything could be good with this type of treatment. Leo would win an Oscar if he were deep fried, bacon wrapped, and cheese-filled. I guarantee it.

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(I certainly didn’t mind the crisp dill slices to the left either…)

I really enjoyed this hot dog, even though I knew it wasn’t very good. I’d compare this weenie devouring experience to going to a WWE event. You know it’s stupid, you know it’s excessive, but you’re still somehow incredibly amused. You’re surrounded by dudes enjoying a ridiculous experience. In this case, the ridiculous experience was a deep fried, bacon wrapped, cheese filled, 3 Sheets Saloon Dog.

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If that didn’t convince you, nothing will.

Cheers

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The Bearded Lady: Christmas Eve

It’s Christmas Eve. Rather than get in the Christmas spirit by listening to Christmas music, baking cookies, and stuffing socks full of useless trinkets, I am choosing to write about a hot dog. The story of this hot dog, in my opinion, truly embodies the spirit of Christmas. It all began on a Saturday morning. I had purchased a Santa suit in preparation to run a 4 mile race called the jingle bell jog, where my plan was to don the suit and attempt to make it across the finish line with my coworkers. Given that I write about a hot dog once a week, y’all know I can’t be in great shape. Well, Saturday morning race day comes along, and I wake up to multiple missed calls and texts. It is 10 minutes to race time and there is no way I make it to Brooklyn on time. Epic fail. Rather than stay in and sulk, however, I make it out to Brooklyn to participate in the post race bar crawl. Part of that bar crawl took place at a bar called the Bearded Lady, which, by some sort of Christmas miracle, served hot dogs. Santa is real, and he presented me with this gift even though I was a bad boy. No coal this time, just a weenie for me. Merry Christmas. Merry Christmas, indeed.

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Behold the Chicago dog. As I’ve mentioned before, Chicago dogs are great, but usually mood weenies. What is a mood weenie? Every once in a while, you get in a strange mood and crave chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream, right? Imagine that chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream is a Chicago dog. It’s not your go-to, but when you’re in a weird mood, it’s money. Luckily, given the events of the morning prior, I was in a weird mood, and a Chicago dog called my name. Chicago dogs are essentially gardens on top of sausages. You have your tomatoes, pickles, onions, peppers, and most importantly mustard. My favorite part about the Chicago dog is the way the yellow mustard (always yellow, obviously) interacts with the pickle to form this graceful, harmonious marriage that is most definitely legal everywhere in the US except for Alabama.

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Now, remember, we are in Brooklyn, so this is not a traditional Chicago dog. We have here a very thin toasted bun which allows for emphasis on the toppings. The toppings are diced up and covered in black pepper, which is very rare for a Chicago dog. In fact, I’ve never seen this before. It is almost as if there is some form of pico de gallo adorning the sausage. I have to say it works very well. Then, the weenie itself. Let me give a shout out again to the Brooklyn Hot Dog Co,  serving up another delicious sausage. They are long, tasty, and of incredible quality. I still long for a little more snap, but definitely some of the best sausages around. This is a very bold weenie, at a very bold place, with very bold cocktails. I highly recommend both the bar and the hot dog they serve. If you’re ever near Prospect Park, this is a great rest stop to shoot some pool and enjoy a cocktail and a dog.

3.5 weenies

Now, in honor of Christmas, a poem. This is a mashup of some of your favorite Christmas hits, entitled “Hot Dogs for Thee”.

On Dasher, on Dancer, on Schnippers, Papaya

On Comet and Cupid, The Cannibal and Rudy’s

A hot dog comes for thee, oh yum yum yum yum

A king weenie we seek, oh yum yum yum yum

Deck the halls with loads of weenies

Fatty fatty fat, we get so fat

A hot dog comes for thee, oh yum yum yum yum

A king weenie we seek, oh yum yum yum yum”

From the middle of my heart (the bottom makes no sense), thanks for all of the support in 2015. See you in 2016, as there are still many weenies to try! God bless you all and have a wonderful holiday! 

Cheers

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Valhalla

Here we are again ladies and gentleman, another edition of NY Weenies @ Night. This particular night was quite spectacular. So spectacular in fact, that I’ll never forget it. I’m so excited to tell you, but I don’t want to spoil it, so let me walk you through the events of the evening first. Nobody is around. That is, nobody except the Mohanster. We first decide to have a unique dinner at a local hot spot. We then decide to indulge in a cocktail at a more local, less hot spot. It is then when another friend ajvc reminds us via text message that there is a concert that night. A concert? Who could be entertaining enough, talented enough, and epicly awesome enough to warrant paying to see in concert? 5 minutes later we were on our way to gallivanting in the realm of Miley Cyrus.

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Proof. Also proof that if you wear a Christie Brinkley style leotard and a moon for an arm people will watch you sing. Also proof that you are a nutjob. So, since this is a hot dog blog, near Terminal 5 in Hell’s Kitchen is a wonderful craft beer bar called Valhalla. This is where we had our nightcap. Luckily for me, they serve hot dogs. If you looked up nightcap in my dictionary the definition would be: “1. A relaxing time enjoying a craft beer and a hot dog after a Miley Cyrus concert”. OK, maybe it wouldn’t have the Miley part, but we can get past that. The dogs here come with nothing on them – basic. But, in a sense, “basic”ally whatever you want on them. The friendly gentleman behind the counter suggested sauerkraut. I reluctantly agreed. Then, like Obi Wan, I waved my finger and said “this is not the kraut you’re looking for”, and they put it on the side. Sweet.

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There was no yellow mustard, but I slapped on some spicy brown and gave it a whirl. The quality of the sausage was good, it had a minor snap and very good flavor. It was also well prepared, as you can see by the grill marks. This place certainly doesn’t specialize in hot dogs, they specialize in beer, so I’m not going to knock them for having a lack of topping options or yellow mustard. I will knock them on the bun, though. You can almost see in the picture that it is quite airy. I don’t know about you, but when I say airy out loud I get a nostril-flared, sour look on my face and I feel acid climb up up my esophagus. Too much? No, the bun was just no good. They tried to toast it but it made it crusty. Crusty, now there’s another bad word. Don’t even get me started. The bun was crusty and airy. Crusty and airy and bland. Crusty and airy and bland, oh my! (Disclaimer: watch the Wizard of Oz to get that one.)

Quite honestly, I felt like I was eating a backyard dog grilled over the 4th of July with a slightly stale bun. As a fan of hot dogs, I’m never going to complain about that. Then I had a delicious local IPA to my right?! You kiddin’ me?

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Valhalla is a great little bar for a great big beer. I highly recommend it. Their weenies are pretty good too. Until next time, knuckleheads.

Cheers

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The Rusty Knot

This review took me to the annals of the west village, on the water where the Pirates gather to discuss their recently discovered booty. I was nautically inspired, and drank a Montauk ale among the seamen. Ahoy, indeed, mates. Then, I realized two very important things. First, that it is very easy to make crude pirate jokes. Second, that a knot physically cannot rust. A knot is usually made of rope, which is not a metal, meaning that it cannot oxidize. Without oxidation, there can be no rust. Similarly, without a good bun, there can be no good hot dog. Enter the Rusty Knot and the pretzel dog.

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When I read about the pretzel dog I was very excited. Pretzels are generally quite good, and pretzel dough is fat and excellent. Hot dogs are obviously also fat and excellent, so when you mix two fat and excellent things you get a double fat and excellent sandwich. Salt is also a great component of a pretzel which could go well with the savory hot dog flavor. However, the end result of this creation was not how it was supposed to be.

The number one rule of wrapping a pretzel around a hot dog is to ensure that the pretzel is soft. This pretzel was crunchy on the outside, like a stale popcorn shrimp. Even worse, think of a hunk of cheese that sat out overnight and you accidentally bit into it without realizing it. That’s some next level imagery. The number two rule of wrapping a pretzel around a hot dog is to keep it on the hot dog. This one fell off and moved like a hybrid slinky-accordion. If I put this on the top if the stairs, it would gracefully slink down the stairs to the tune of “Play that Funky Music White Boy” because apparently that is a song that is commonly played on the accordion. Then, the hot dog itself wasn’t cooked enough and had nary a snap. As Boomer says on Monday Night… c’mon man. Overall, the pretzel idea was poorly executed.

In the above artsy, tiled, picture gallery contraption you can see the accordion figure of the pretzel a little better. You can also see a few positive things. You can order a pickle for 2 bucks. That’s phenomenal. There is guacamole in play. Stellar. Then, there is yellow mustard dipping sauce. This is the only thing that saved this dog from being absolutely demolished in the ratings.

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Quite honestly I feel bad that this is the lowest dog ranked yet. I enjoyed the bar and the experience overall. I even took this guy I met on the street from Arkansas there because I thought it would be good. I would go to the bar again for certain. They have a pool table, and a campy nautical vibe that is very appealing. There’s a real fish tank! Regardless, (and not irregardless, that’s not a word so stop saying it America), it wasn’t a good hot dog and that’s just a fact.

Cheers

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Humboldt & Jackson

Well, I found myself in Brooklyn again. This time was far enough away that I caught people giving me funny glances as I walked around the streets. While it is in Williamsburg, it is definitely in the back of Williamsburg. Back here is where the Wicked Witch of the West summers. The rat from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has a place here. Have you seen PeeWee’s Big Adventure? This is where Large Marge lives. However, nestled within this barrio is a little taquito of holiness called Humboldt and Jackson, serving up excellent All-American drinks and snacks. It’s crafty.

  
Before I get into the deliciousness that is pictured above, let me start out by saying that these guys serve something called “beer cheese fondue”. I cannot name a single time in life where if that was on the menu I wouldn’t order it. It was amazing, and I highly recommend it. Beer is good, cheese is good, and fondue is fun to say in a french accent with a beret on. Beer cheese fondue is a fantastic invention. (Maybe they should put some of it on a hot dog.)

Now, the weenie itself. The Chili Verde Dog. H&J is all about small market beers, and they keep constant with that theme in their hot dogs. The weenie itself is from Brooklyn Hot Dog Co., a local sausage maker. If I knew that was a profession that I could tell a guidance counselor in elementary school, it would have been on the top of my list. Not only is it local, it tastes damn good. Note to self, I need to visit the weenie factory soon. Then, laid gracefully on top of the dog is the chili verde. This is certainly a first for me, and a pretty unique, hipster-y topping. I am definitely a fan of it, but I’m not so sure it should be on a hot dog. If you’ve ever eaten flautas, this hot dog is essentially flautas plus a sausage. There are some mexican soft cheeses and diced onions on top as well that help cut the spice of the chili verde. The bun is toasted with care, and they even stuck a little American flag in it. How perfect is that? 

  
Obviously I enjoyed it. The weenie in general was kind of like that kid that you stay friends with only because he is interesting. You don’t want to hang out with him all the time, but every once in a while he provides a little spark to your drab, meaningless, mundane existence. Pop some chili verde on that bad boy and that’s the personality you’ll get in the dog. Good, but not great. Mexican, but American. Sauce, but not salsa. Ornate, not elegant.

3.5 weenies

I would also like to point out that I did not plan on coming to this establishment, nor did I know they had hot dogs. I was more than pleasantly surprised with the place in general and the fact that they had a gourmet hot dog on the menu. They specialize in beer and wine pairings and everything that they serve was really good. Go there. 

On a more serious note, what has 100 teeth and eats wieners? A zipper…

Cheers

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Harlem Shake

How does one make something better? This is a question that has been asked since the invention of the wheel, the cotton gin, and sliced bread. Improvements to the already existent are what have driven the advancement of mankind. Plato, Aristotle, Galileo, Da Vinci, Edison, Jack Black, and more have wandered down the path of enlightenment for us before. But have we as a society become stagnant? Has our ability to improve, innovate, and invent gone by the wayside? I think not, my friends. Because, in Harlem, there is a hot dog that is bacon wrapped, deep fried, and topped with cherry relish. Thank you, Harlem Shake. My faith in humanity is restored.

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On 124th st, off of the 2-3 train stop in Harlem, sits this diner style restaurant that is a homage to Harlem history and culture. They serve shakes (obviously), burgers, fries, hot dogs, and Cheerwine. For those that don’t know about Cheerwine, it is the greatest soft drink ever invented. Go south and you’ll find them everywhere, so it is very refreshing (no pun intended) to see one in NYC.  On the walls of the diner are signed pictures of Harlem celebrities, Harlem mementos, and an old school back-lit menu like something from the movie Grease. The music is funky, upbeat, and there to preserve the mood. But, most importantly, when I asked about their best dog, I got the right answer.

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The Sonoran Dog. Bacon wrapped, deep fried, topped with cherry and pickle relish and a spicy chipotle sauce. Even better, a well toasted Martin’s potato roll is the chassis for this well-oiled machine. At first, I was hesitant on the deep-fried portion of this frank. Luckily, they didn’t add any breading, so it wasn’t too heavy. In fact, it just added a layer of crispiness that essentially enhanced the already existent snap. The quality of the sausage was on point (credit to Boar’s Head), and you’d have to be a fool to complain about bacon wrapped around your weenie. The mixture of the relish and the sauce then basically escorted you through St. Peter’s gate into hot dog heaven. Go eat the Sonoran dog, it is one of the best in NYC hands down.

Accompanying the Sonoran was the Jerk. This guy is adorned with Jamaican Jerk coleslaw, creole sauce, and pork rinds. While very good, I basically don’t want to talk about it because the Sonoran completely overshadowed it with its prowess. Then, because we could, Mike and I split a Snoop Dog. That’s right, a Snoop Dog. Sippin’ on weenies and cheese.

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Simple, yet elegant. I’m on a cheese streak lately. This dog had much more cheese on it than the Shake Shack Shack-Meister, and did the whole cheese thing even better. The cheese topping was like an entire pack of 24 Kraft singles melted and condensed, blessed by the Pope, and poured over the dog. Fantastic dessert.

4.5 weenies

Go to Harlem, eat a Sonoran Dog at Harlem Shake. Go to a jazz club (I recommend Minton’s), and have yourself a night about it. I sure did.

P.S. This is the best Harlem Shake I’ve ever seen. The Banana Shake: Banana Shake

Cheers

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Shake Shack

There are two things in life that I have dreamt about, yet hadn’t done before this review. They are: eat cake by the ocean, and eat at Shake Shack. One of these has been accomplished in the last 24 hours. Unfortunately, no, I did not eat cake by the ocean (sorry Joe Jonas). I am very happy, however, that my first time at Shake Shack I was there to eat a hot dog and not a burger. I’m also very happy that everything about Shake Shack was better than expected. I went in thinking I was going to have a touristy, commercial, type of vibe. In the restaurant, everything changed. I came out stuffed, with both a cheese stain and a mustard stain on my shirt. That, my friends, is how life should be.

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The Shack-Meister. That is exactly what a hot dog should be called, because I want my sausage to sound like my college frat buddy who partied the hardest. Ooooh, the Shack-meister, look at him gooo, chug a beer, he’s the Shack-meister. Besides its already epic name, it apparently is the most popular dog on the menu and according to the man behind the counter “made them famous”. This is a very unique dog. It’s the first I’ve reviewed that is split open. It is also the first I’ve reviewed with fried shallots (elegant onions). But, most importantly, it is the first I’ve reviewed with cheese. Poured in the crevasse of the weenie is a delicious cheese that tastes like 7 Kraft singles melted and condensed like Campbell’s soup. It is glorious. For some reason it reminds me of molten steel being poured in the forges of the industrial age. I’m basically Andrew Carnegie building America one weenie at a time, pouring my molten steel on wieners across the nation.

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The bun is of the potato variety. It’s dense and yellow, well toasted, and compliments the rich flavors of the toppings well. The sausage is maybe my least favorite part of the dog. There is no char, no snap, and the split open presentation helps with the cheese, but takes away from overall enjoyment. It does have a nice smoky flavor, however, which works well with everything else. The crispy fried scallions (elegant onions) add a nice crunch and appearance. Every element of the hot dog compliments each other in a different way, combining for a delightfully rich and savory experience. This dog is not to be laughed at. Don’t mess with the Shack-Meister, he’ll steal your girlfriend.

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Oh my goodness I totally forgot. Shake Shack has yellow mustard everywhere. It’s on tap, it’s in packets, it’s underneath the chairs, and it oozes from the light fixtures. Y’all know how I feel about my yellow mustard. It is incredibly refreshing and completely correct that spicy brown is not in the entire restaurant. Thank you, Shake Shack, may the tides forever be in your favor.

Cheers

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Bill’s Bar & Burger

Sometimes, after looking at a bunch of Picasso sculptures, you get a hankering for a weenie. It happens to me all of the time. For example, on Sunday, the cubism really got to me and I just had a craving for a fat juicy sausage. I was very much a tourist that day. After cruising around in the MoMa, I dilly-dallied on over to Rockefeller Center and watched some guys try way too hard to impress their dates by trying to ice skate. I was feeling way too cute and traditional. Then, like the star of Bethlehem, Bill’s Bar and Burger appeared on the horizon. Today, for this young man, it would be Bill’s Bar and Hot Dog.

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There were 4 dogs on the menu. New York, Chili Cheese, Chicago, and Corn Dogs were the options. I asked the young gentle-dude what the best weenie was, and got a literal LOL reply, “I like them plain with ketchup.” I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the only time it is OK to eat a ketchup hot dog is if you’re under 12. So, I may have to contact a lawyer and see about Bill’s Bar and Burger’s child labor situation. I then had to press the waiter and rephrase by asking for the most popular weenie, since his judgment was so terrible. I ended up with the Chicago Dog. I was very pleased with this, as it had been a while since I had one. The last I remember was Frankie’s On the Go back in July, and it was pretty underwhelming. A Chicago Dog is typically mustard, onions, tomatoes, pickles, and peppers. It’s like a little salad on a dog. I’m not a salad guy (who would have guessed, a guy who writes about hot dogs doesn’t like salads), but I love a good Chicago dog. Upon receipt of the sausage, the first thing I noticed was the bun. Big dog in a little bun. (Sung to the tune of “fat guy in a little coat”). The hot dog isn’t even that big! Honey, I shrunk your bun.

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The little bun wasn’t too big of a problem, though. The picture above highlights the best part of Bill’s Bar and Burger’s weenie: the actual sausage. It’s a Hatfield’s all beef bad boy. I highly recommend. They probably could have cooked it a little more, but this was like a Maserati among Hyundais. An albatross among finches. Well done Hatfield’s. The pickle was sliced, which is against my preference, but the mustard was classic French’s yellow and it made me feel alive again. The peppers had a nice spice to them, but maybe were a little too much, or too acidic. Lord knows I have heartburn problems already, I certainly don’t need more of that. In all honesty I really enjoyed the hot dog itself. Plus, at Bill’s, you can order a “Cold Ass Beer”. It is literally the brand of a beer. I don’t care who you are, that’s fun.

3.5 weenies

I’d like you all to leave this review thinking that you should go to Bill’s Bar and Burger. It is definitely a great place to grab a simple meal. Plus, it’s in the Rockefeller Center, so when your parents come in and want to see the tree, you can drag them in to get a burger or a weenie and not even feel bad about it. Then, you can watch a bunch of people fall in the ice skating rink. Then, you can go see the Rockettes. Is it Christmas yet? Smart marketing, Bill’s. Smart.

Cheers

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