If Michael Stern had his way, we might have seen an all-hot-dog Roadfood Eating Tour of Connecticut (and what a fun tour that would have been... for some of us!). As it was, we paid visits to three of the Constitution State's finest tube steak purveyors, beginning with Super Duper Weenie (see the Roadfood.com review). The natural casing, beef-and-pork dog itself is fine but, befitting a place that makes its own relishes from house-pickled vegetables, it's the toppings that shine, especially in the set-piece specialty dogs. The one pictured above is the fabulous New Englander, with sauerkraut, bacon, mustard, sweet relish, and raw onions.
Just as good is the New Yorker, with kraut, onion sauce, mustard, and hot relish. The Cincinnatian tops a bunned dog with Cincinnati style chili and chopped onions, and a fistful of shredded cheese:
Don't forget to order some of SDW's salt-and-pepper fries, made from potatoes grown locally especially for them:
Chris: Admittedly, I've never fully appreciated Super Duper Weenie of Fairfield. Now back when they had a second store in Monroe -- which was conveniently catty-corner from a second location of Dr. Mike's -- that was a different story. We'd pick up friends from New Haven and make the scenic backroads drive for hot dogs and Mighty-Ity sausage sandwiches, followed by the Nutmeg State's richest ice cream across the street. Those days were glorious! Sadly, the Monroe store closed, and when in Fairfield, I'm always thinking of Rawley's up the road, which serve my favorite hot dogs. I've only been to SDW when Rawley's was closed or with out-of-town friends. On my last trip with Buffetbuster, we had the Dixie dog and I didn't care for the slaw (but being a displaced Southerner, I am indeed spoiled). This time, I ordered the Cinncinnatian, and I was disappointed that the cheese on top was still cold. (That white powder that covers shredded cheese to keep it from clumping together bothers me, too, but that's just a pet peeve.) The chili didn't work for me, either, because it wasn't really Cincy chili. However, the bite that I had from Bruce of his New Yorker was really fabulous -- and this I'd order again...but only if Rawley's is closed. The fries are great, too, but I'm not really thinking about fries when I'm eating hot dogs.
Bruce: Yep, cold shredded cheese on just about anything is none too appetizing, especially the pre-shredded kind coated with powder. But that's how Cincinnati chili is served, isn't it? Confession: I've never had Cincinnati chili. It's one of the few holes in my Roadfood travels. Actually, I did have it once, in Washington, D.C., decades ago, before I was Roadfood-savvy. The only thing I remember about it was how I couldn't understand how the stuff could be called chili. Such a callow youth!
Chris: Yep, Cincy chili is served that way, but my beef is that it didn't melt on the hot dog's surface, and I really don't think that's asking too much. But let's not talk about holes in RF travels, because our major one is crater-sized in the middle of Texas...ummm, pizza's next, right?