Time to Celebrate National Hot Dog Day and Month
Whether you call it a hot dog, a wiener, a frankfurter, or a brat, there is nothing more American than encased meats nestled in a bun. July 17 is National Hot Dog Day, falling smack-dab in the middle of July, which is National Hot Dog Month. Make sure you are prepared to celebrate the holiday properly. While we can’t help you decide whether a hotdog is a sandwich, we can help with a few of our favorite hot-diggity spots for enjoying the crowd pleaser and a few places to purchase tubes of meat to throw on your own grill.
Founder and hot dog king James Hammerl is well known in Atlanta for the hot dog cart he used to roll through festivals and events. In 2015, he opened a brick and mortar outpost in Decatur and we are ever so lucky. It’s an oasis—literally there are thatched umbrellas, cold beer, and late night hours for hot dog cravings. His dogs are supplied by local Pigman Goods and veggie purveyor Lightlife Foods, and his menu is clever with nods to global cuisine. His 404 Dog is the perfect representation of an Atlanta classic: an all beef footlong topped with pimchz (pimento cheese), bacon bits, Dogg Sauce (caramelized onion mustard), and hot sauce.
Cool tip: You can order vegan and gluten free with Pure Knead buns.
Doggy Dogg. 310 E. Howard Ave. Decatur. Heydoggydogg.com
Skip’s Chicago Dogs
Leo Shababy and his son Leo “Skip” Shababy moved from Chicago and opened Skip’s Chicago Dogs in late 1979. They served their first dog to a customer on January 1, 1980 and Skip’s has been slinging hot dogs ever since. Choose a classic Vienna Chicago style dog with mustard, relish, onions, pickles, peppers, tomatoes, and celery salt or a Polish sausage charbroiled on a grill and settled in a grilled bun.
Cool tip: Get a corndog with cheese and house made chili topping.
Skip’s Chicago Dogs. 48 N. Avondale Rd. Avondale Estates. 404-292-6703, skipshotdogs.com
Drafts & Dogs
This stall in Ponce City Market’s central Food Hall comes from the crew behind 18.21 Bitters with locally sourced and fresh ingredients, and fun cocktails to accompany your meat (or veggie). Their takes range from a simple Chicago style dog to an outlandish “I’m So Fancy (You Already Know)” with a black angus dog topped with truffle butter, lobster, and caviar. “Opa! Your Mouth” is a Greek take with yogurt dill sauce, feta, olives, and fresh dill. It’s fun to order the naked dog, called “The Emperor Has No Clothes.”
Cool tip: The team behind D&D recently opened The James Room along the Eastside Beltline next to Krog Street Market. Check it out.
Drafts & Dogs. 675 Ponce de Leon Ave. NE. draftsanddogs.com
Barleygarden Kitchen & Craft Bar
Avalon’s Barleygarden Kitchen is a fun spot for a cold beer and a dog. The menu has a dedicated section for building a dog fit for everyone. Choose your meat: all-beef, chicken cheddar, knockwurst-bratwurst, sweet Italian, or beef kielbasa. Then top your dog with toppings combos such as Philly, Bavaria, Frontier, Corndog, and Amigo. Dress them up with cheese, turkey chili, onions, red peppers, sauerkraut, jalapeno pickle relish… Then there are sauces like beer mustard, ranch, blue cheese, honey mustard, and buffalo sauce.
Cool tip: Barleygarden’s corn dog batter is gluten free. “I Double Dog Dare You” gives you two dogs for $10 (quite a deal).
Barleygarden Kitchen & Craft Bar. 900 Avalon Blvd. Alpharetta. 678-266-6218. Barleygardenkitchen.com.
The Original Hot Dog Factory
Tons of choices, tons of toppings in a slick atmosphere. The Original Hot Dog Factory has encased meats of all proteins: beef, chicken, turkey, veggie—gluten free, too. From the All American with mustard, ketchup, relish, and onions to internationally inspired choices like their Jamaican Jerk Chicken dog topped with grilled pineapple, onions, and sweet island sauce, there are dozens of choices. The Carolina Slaw Dog is a particularly delicious choice with a grilled beef dog topped with chili and slaw.
Cool Tip: Deep fried Twinkies.
The Original Hot Dog Factory. 1529 Spring Rd. SE. Smyrna. 678-293-6099 and 75 Piedmont Ave. NE. Atlanta. 404-907-4133. theoriginalhotdogfactory.com
Building your own hot dog bar at home to celebrate National Hot Dog Month is pretty easy with these local purveyors.
Pataks Meat Products
With Czech and Polish origins, Patak offers a wide selection of European meats and sausages—anything from traditional wieners with German pork and beef to Kielbasa and Andouille. The double smoked Bohemian Smokies are particularly good on a fresh roll with mustard. Pro tip: Patak is open Monday through Friday and only the first Saturday of the month.
Cool Tip: a large selection of Polish candies and chocolates
Patak Meat Products. 4107 Ewing Rd. Austell. 770-941-7993. pataksmeat.com
Pine Street Market
Owner/butcher Rusty Bowers makes his all-natural frankfurters with grass-fed beef and heritage pork lightly seasoned with coriander, paprika, mustard, and garlic. Pine Street Market’s new sibling store--Chop Shop—is a partnership with local Riverview Farms. It’s a full circle concept where the farmer knows the butcher and the butcher knows the farmer—fresh, local, and sustainable.
Cool tip: In addition to cases filled with meats, locally made cheeses, and ready to go foods, Chop Shop is a market place for locally made provisions.
Pine Street Market. 4A Pine St. Avondale Estates. 404-296-9677. pinestreetmarket.com. Chop Shop. 1366 Memorial Dr. Se. Atlanta. 404-370-1818. chopshopatl.com.
The Spotted Trotter
Kevin Ouzts’ offers many meaty treats from his locally sourced proteins. He offers a couple dozen fresh sausages from rabbit to boudin to bratwurst. His Knock-Braut is a traditional bratwurst made in knockwurst style from meadow-raised pork. The lamb merguez is at the same time delicate and spicy with Border Springs lamb and a little bit of pork.
Cool tip: Impress with a wide array of crepinettes for fancy grilling
1610 Hosea L. Williams Dr. Atlanta. Atlanta. 404-254-4958. thespottedtrotter.com