BEST HOT DOGS - 2004
Those who love big, sumptuous hot dogs know exactly what goes into making them: beef, pig knuckles, Sasquatch meat, compost, industrial-strength artery-clogging juice, and a whole lotta love. But here at this tasty West Bank dive, you can get even more than that. How much is that doggie in the window? With a side of fresh French-press coffee and French fries, it's still less than the price of the Lipitor you'll need after eating to your heart's content. Vienna beef dogs come encased by a thick, natural skin that, when pierced with the front teeth, delivers the satisfying snap of a pigeon's neck beneath your shoe. Polish wieners, Italian wieners, and dozens of other lewd 'n' juicy options share the menu with the brawniest vegan dog in town--perhaps the only one in the world that doesn't taste like a deep-fried water chestnut. And while you're piling your briny brats with some delicious combination of relish, cheese, mustard, onions, sauerkraut, celery salt, and--god help you--hot peppers, you can choose between two dining options: "Smoking" and "More Smoking." (Okay, so there's a "Non Smoking" table for you hypochondriac healthmongers, but what are you doing here anyway?) Those who come for the excellent frankfurters will return to the Wienery for its idiosyncratic '70s film vibe. Sitting at the faded countertop in this super-sized walk-in closet, you'll find yourself chatting with cabbies, bartenders, and various other fast-talking characters who share your grease-wiping preference for jeans over napkins. And while you're scarfing down tubesteaks with the locals, remember to tip your dog-tender. He'll make sure the next one's real meat.