Super Duper Weenie

Review by: Michael Stern

Originally a mobile truck selling hot dogs by the side of the road, Super Duper Weenie is now a stationary restaurant with indoor seating (plus mobile truck for catering). As you might suspect from its name, the house specialty is a hot dog. It is a firm-fleshed, locally-made weenie that is split and cooked on the grill until its outside gets a little crusty but the inside stays succulent. It is sandwiched in a lovely fresh-baked roll and adorned with homemade condiments, including relish made from pickles that Chef Gary Zemora has himself made from cucumbers. The sauerkraut, the hot relish, the meat chili, the onion sauce are ALL made from scratch.

You can get whatever you like on a hot dog, but Super Duper Weenie makes it easy (and fast) by offering certain basic configurations. These include “The New Englander,” which Gary devised based on his own fond memories of the superior franks served at Jimmie’s of Savin Rock in West Haven and at Rawley’s in Fairfield. It’s a dog topped with sauerkraut, bacon, mustard, sweet relish and raw onion. The New Yorker, Gary says, was inspired by what is served from Gotham’s streetcorner carts (but we dare say it is 1000% better than any street weenie we’ve eaten in Manhattan): sauerkraut, onion sauce, mustard and hot relish. There is a Chicagoan topped with lettuce, tomato, mustard, celery salt, relish, and a pickle spear; a dynamite Dixie dog that is topped with hot meaty chili AND rests atop a bed of sweet homemade cole slaw; and there is a Georgia red hot, which is a spicy sausage with the works.

Non-dog lovers who find themselves at this jolly joint can get a big, boldly-spiced hamburger made from grass-fed local beef, a sausage and pepper sandwich on a Portuguese roll, a cheese steak, or a grilled chicken sandwich. S-D-W even accommodates vegetarians with a tuna salad sandwich or a veggie burger.

Whatever else you get, you must get French fries. These are beautiful, crunchy twigs of potato that are fresh from the fry-basket and made extra-delicious by a vigorous hail of salt and pepper.

Dine indoors at the always-crowded counter, where you cannot help but feel part of the counter-culture kibitzing that never ends; or choose a picnic table by the side of the eatery, which is also always crowded.

What To Eat

French fries

Mighty Ity

Milk Shake


New Englander

Onion rings

The Natural


Super Duper Weenie Recipes

Mighty Ity


What do you think of Super Duper Weenie?

6 Responses to “Super Duper Weenie”

Buzz Bukvic

November 16th, 2007

As good as a hot dog can get! I visit my hometown (Fairfield) every summer and I’ve made it a point to come to Super Duper Weenie, starting seven years or so ago, when the place was still on wheels. Although the prices are a little high for hot dogs, who can blame Gary Zemora since the place is always packed. (The other way to look at this is that this is as cheap a 5-star gourmet meal as one can get!)

Any of the hot dog combos (New Englander, Chicagoan, etc.) are excellent, with various excellent homemade relishes (although personally I prefer less relish and usually eat most of it off the dog first), but the hot dog itself is king – meaty, plump, firm (not mushy, like most dogs), perfectly grilled (and split). I especially recommend the Georgia Red Hot, which has a nice spicy sizzle to it, virtually unknown this side of Hungary with its hot paprika debreciner dogs. The fries are quite good and worth trying but I prefer to hold the fries and have an extra dog instead! I only wish Gary would open a franchise in Huntsville, AL to curb my withdrawal pains.


Everett Logan

November 1st, 2007

Ever know a place that’s popular and you can’t for the life of you figure out why? That’s Super Duper Weenie. I have been there three times to give it the benefit of the doubt, just in case my first time was an off-day. Nope. Still bad every time.

The dogs are so-so. They’re not bad, but nothing to write home about. The quality of the dogs is average for a place that specializes in franks. They’re a small step above the typical pushcart dog, but nowhere near the level of someplace like Papaya King. I don’t even think they’re as good as Gray’s Papaya. Worst of all, they commit the frank-cooking sacrilege of splitting the dog down the middle before grilling it. Franks have a skin for a reason: to keep all the juicy flavor inside. Every great hot dog place knows this. To hot dog purists, this is worse than cutting a filet mignon in half. You want it whole and intact, the way it was made. Grilling the inside of the frank ruins the texture and dries it out.

As for the toppings, the kraut is tasteless, mushy and with no sourness to it at all; the mustard is bland, no bite; the chili tastes like it’s Hormel out of the can.

I really don’t see what the fuss is about. The service is awful. Every time I’ve been in there is worse than the last. It’s so full of attitude that it’s like something out of a Seinfeld episode. New Yorkers on the street are friendlier to strangers than these cats are. I once paid with a credit card (which they accept, even have the logo stickers on the door) and got an audible sigh and eye roll from the person working the till.

Maybe this place was once special back when it was a truck and now they’re just coasting off an old reputation. For the quality of the dogs alone I would have said, just stop if you’re driving by, don’t go out of your way. But when you combine the horrible attitude of the people working there, I would say avoid it at all costs.


Chris Johnson

July 26th, 2006

I concur with the commentary. The food at this restaurant actually tastes like something special. Most hotdogs taste salty. You maybe taste some mustard flavor, but there isn’t a lot of complexity to the dish. The dogs at Super Duper taste as complex as a fine wine, and offer taste sensations that are usually confined to home cooked meals. It’s obvious that the proprietors of this establishment care enough about the product to insist on quality ingredients, and careful preparation. I drive two hours from Massachusetts just to sample their cuisine. It’s worth the drive.


Taylor Berkowitz

June 4th, 2005

While I agree with the overall opinion that Super Duper makes a good dog, I believe that there are better dogs to be had. I’ve had the Dixie dog, New Englander, and New York dog. The dogs are tasty and have a nice snap. The combinations are interesting. I was not impressed with the depth of flavor in the Chili. I think the chili at the Glenwood Drive-in has better flavor and spice. I also prefer the New England style bun which is not used at Super Duper. Roscoe’s in Hartford has most of the same combinations and some variations not found at Super Duper.

The French Fries are outstanding. They a fresh cut, thin, and crispy. Salt and pepper are all you need to enhance the experience.

Super Duper is worth a stop if you are driving on I-95. But I would suggest you keep going (assuming you are headed north) and hit Danny’s Drive-in in Stratford.


Wayne Schletter

November 8th, 2004

Hot Dog Heaven

I’ve been trying the hot dogs of the area based on Roadfood’s recommendation and most have been pretty good. But now that I have found Super Duper Weenie my quest has ended. I had a Chicago Dog here that puts every other attempt at a Chicago Dog to shame (including Danny Meyer’s at the Shake Shack). The lettuce, tomato, relish, pickle & celery salt are not stacked on so much as blended into a wondrous boullibaise of flavor. I got brave and added cheese to my salw & chili Dixie Dog and it was like turning the flavor up from a 10 to an 11. You can taste that eveything is homemade here and it is so good you cannot stop wolfing down the weenies. Wave as you pass the legendary Walters, swerve away from Swanky Franks, this is the only stop you need to make off I-95.


Bette Blackwell

August 3rd, 2003

My husband and I had the misfortune to move to Bridgeport, CT in 2001. I say that it’s a misfortune not because we dislike Bridgeport – we love it. I only say that because we’ve developed an addiction to the tempting doggies served at Super Duper Weenie (or, as we call it, just plain “Weenie”.)

Nothing’s better on a sunny, warm, gently windblown summer’s day than plopping down with a pair (or more) of Chef Gary’s plump pups and a basket of still-sizzling hot fries. I must admit that I’m somewhat of a french fry snob. I only really like them when they are cut shoestring-thin, cooked crisp and to perfection: when they achieve that magical coppery-amber color. Weenie gets them just right. Shove a ton of ’em in a basket, sprinkle heartily with salt and pepper, charge me just 3 bucks and I’m in spud heaven.

As for the dogs, I’ve finally worked my way through SDWs sustantial hot dog menu: New Englands, Chicago, Dixie, Chicago, Georgia Redhots . . . oh, I’m hungry just thinking about ’em. These big, chubby franks are prepared my favorite way: split open and grilled (no deep frying for me – that’s just plain wrong.) The grill adds just the right amount of crispness to that natural casing! Plop one in a bun with your choice of fixings: from SDW’s menu board of selections or a la carte, add a basket of peppered spuds and a cool iced tea (add your own sweetener, if desired, AND you get a free refill!), head outside to one of the open-air picnic tables or sit inside – if you can get a seat – and watch Gary and his staff work their magic. If iced tea isn’t – well, your “cup of tea” – there’s the standard Coke, Boyan’s sodas and a new shake maker. I recommend the black-and-white shake, myself. As for the dogs, I love them all, but I’m a big fan of a Georgia Redhot, but I replace the kraut with slaw. Its cool creaminess provides a nice counterbalance to the heat of the dog.

If I had to make one – okay, two – minor complaints, they are of a purely personal nature. I prefer yellow mustard to brown, since brown always seems to have horseradish in it, and I loathe horseradish. The other is that I prefer my hot dog buns the New England way: flat-sided, not round, and plunked on the grill until toasty. Again, that’s certainly no gripe against SDW.

Nothing in this place sits around, except the customers. Hot dogs, Mighty Ity sausages, and burgers are cooked to order, not left lying under heat lamps, and your order of fries goes from tater to tasty in about 3 minutes. As if that isn’t fresh enough for you, even the relish is made in- house from fresh cukes, peppers and spices.

SDW is a great place to grab a Saturday lunch, especially if you’re looking to meet home improvement contractors, since they all seem to gather there for their own lunch: tree guys, fence installers, landscapers, house painters … they’re all here. Keep in mind it’s a small place that is almost ALWAYS jumpin’. Don’t plan on snagging one of the 6 or so parking spaces out from – play it safe and park across the street in the Syms parking lot. The short walk will do you good when you’re stuffed to the gills!


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