Jimmy Buff’s | Hot Dog Italian Style | Newark, New Jersey

Review by: Michael Stern

Newark’s Unique Hot Dog

A hot dog Italian style, also known as a Newark dog, starts as an all-beef wiener. They deep fry it until its outside is taut enough to crunch. The cooks then hoist one of these dogs, or preferably two if you order a double as most people do, from the oil. They then nestle them inside a half a round loaf of sturdy Italian bread.

Hot dogs are just the foundation of this amazing sandwich. Atop the twin tube steaks they pile a mound of sautéed onions and peppers. Atop the onions and peppers go a half-pound of crisp-fried hunks of potato. There you have it: a whole meal (and then some) in a wheelbarrow of a bun. Options atop this mighty mess include mustard or ketchup, a spill of marinara sauce, or Jimmy Buff’s onion relish. The relish is delicious but will scorch tender taste buds.

Creation of the Newark Dog

Jimmy Buff’s started in Newark back in the 1930s. Hot dog historians surmise that it is the place the Newark dog first was served. Proprietor James Racioppi believes his grandparents, James and Mary Racioppi, originated Newark hot dogs. During the Depression, they made them as a snack to serve friends who came to their North Ward apartment to play cards each week. “After a while, people started coming just to eat,” Mr. Racioppi says. “So in 1932 they opened a store at 14th and 9th to sell the sandwiches. That was the beginning.” Since that time, the hot dog Italian style, has become a signature dish of Newark, New Jersey.

A second location of Jimmy Buff’s is at 506 Boulevard in Kenilworth. (908-276-2833)

Directions & Hours

10:30am - 8:30pm
  • Monday: 10:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Tuesday: 10:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Wednesday: 10:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Thursday: 10:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Friday: 10:30 AM – 9:30 PM
  • Saturday: 10:30 AM – 9:30 PM
  • Sunday: 12:00 – 6:00 PM

What To Eat

Newark-Style Hot Dog

DISH

Jimmy Buff’s | Hot Dog Italian Style | Newark, New Jersey Recipes

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What do you think of Jimmy Buff’s | Hot Dog Italian Style | Newark, New Jersey?

4 Responses to “Jimmy Buff’s | Hot Dog Italian Style | Newark, New Jersey”

Scatman

December 26th, 2021

I don’t understand how a ”latest review” article has a comment from 2010.

Reply

    Branden Shortt

    April 21st, 2022

    It has been updated recently, so it shows up as a Latest review.

    Reply

Lewis Toth

June 18th, 2021

God Sent

Reply

Heidi Pohle

December 6th, 2010

Bob and I went here for lunch after our morning tour of Thomas Edison National Historic Place in West Orange. It was only a five minute drive them there!

Bob ordered the single cheesesteak. He said that he enjoyed it.

I ordered the double Italian style hot dog. The cook stands in front of a huge flat griddle that is angled with the left side higher than the right. A gas flame burns underneath, and the oil collects on the right side. He dropped two hot dogs into the oil, and moved them around in the oil. He also added a pile of sliced potatos to the oil and watched them closely.

The rolls they use for doubles are big, round, flat rolls cut in half, with a slit in the middle to gently hold all the wonderful ingredients. The cook slathered some mustard into the bottom and placed my two dogs on top. Then he picked up a generous helping of onions and peppers and added them on top. Finally, he used his long fork and speared all my oil floating potatos onto it, and placed them on the top of the sandwich. At this point it was overflowing with ingredients. He added a big squeeze of ketchup, placed it into a paper lined basket and handed it to me.

We sat down at an open table, and dug in. Luckily they give you a fork! The food is incredibly hot, and you really have to let it cool down a tad. I wanted to get a bit of everything in each bite, so the fork helped in that regard. Each bite was really delicious. All the flavors really went together well, and I enjoyed it immensely. I wasn’t able to finish it all, so my trusty companion stepped up to the plate to make sure there were no leftovers.

All the while we were in there, there was a constant stream of people in and out. One group even came a great distance, because they were visiting relatives for the holidays, and said they just couldn’t miss out on Jimmy Buff’s when they are home! We’ll be back!

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