All the Buffalo-area favorites are at The Ted’s outpost in Tucson: charcoal-grilled, poked, and slashed Sahlen’s hot dogs with Ted’s homemade hot sauce, fresh-cut onion rings, hand-dipped shakes, and loganberry. The dogs develop a crusty exterior to go with that unique Western New York pork-and-beef hot dog taste.
Ted’s Hot Dogs is a regional mini-chain with locations in the Buffalo, NY suburbs of Amherst, Lancaster, Lockport, North Tonawanda, Orchard Park, Tonawanda, Williamsville, and Tempe. Wait a minute, Tempe? As in Arizona? Why is one, and only one, branch of Ted’s in Tempe? Well, oddly enough, this Tempe location is the one with the most direct ties to founder Theodore Spiro Liaros. Ted’s son Spiro, president of Ted’s Hot Dogs, operates this Arizona Ted’s. Spiro’s son Ted (the original Ted’s grandson) runs the seven New York Ted’s.
All the Buffalo-area favorites are here: charcoal-grilled, poked, and slashed Sahlen’s hot dogs with Ted’s homemade hot sauce, fresh-cut onion rings, hand-dipped shakes, and loganberry. The menu also includes Polish and Italian sausages, jumbo dogs, footlongs, brats and white hots, chicken sandwiches, and burgers. After placing an order, our appetites are piqued as we watch our dogs sputter and sizzle over charcoal as the grillman prods them and rolls them over the hot grates. The dogs develop a crusty exterior to go with that unique Western New York pork-and-beef hot dog taste (pork/beef hot dogs are common pretty much everywhere, but somehow the ones made in Western NY are special). Tell the dresser how you’d like it garnished; we (well, one of us) can’t resist the hot sauce, but it’s not absolutely necessary to fully enjoy these dogs.
There’s a little display area honoring its Buffalo roots, but Ted’s has been here in Arizona for a quarter century, and the local folk look upon it as one of their own, not an out-of-town transplant. Of course, only at the Tempe location can you take your lunch out to dine in the 120-degree summer heat, shaded by hot-dog-and-mustard colored table umbrellas.