New Jersey Hot Dogs

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learning
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Mon, 11/29/10 8:19 AM
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Can you share the recipe for the chili? I can eat 10 gallons of it by myself!
 

David_NYC
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/11/10 10:22 AM
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Karl Ehmer is now a zombie brand. After seeing Jack's 99 cent store on Herald Square selling short dated Karl Ehmer products with another name on the package, I find this sad tale:
http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/queens/2010/10/06/2010-10-06_the_wurst_of_times_for_ridgewood_german_butcher_shop.html
Still to be seen is if the new owner keeps the same recipes in the production of these products.
 

ken8038
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/11/10 12:35 PM
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Thanks David (I guess...) for this sad news. I've been an Ehmer fan ever since I came across them at the old Bavarian Festival in Barnesboro PA ("The Official Wurst Of...,) back in the 70's and then discovered that there was a retail store near where I lived in Brooklyn at the time (how could I have not known that???).
 
And, although it's a hike for me, I'll occasionally drive up to Ridgewood on a Saturday for thier outdoor grilled wursts, and to pick up some additional food from the retail shop.
 
It's not clear from the article, but was the Ridgewood manufacturing plant the supply source for the other Karl Ehmer stores?
 

David_NYC
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sun, 12/12/10 12:04 AM
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Yes, the Ridgewood manufacturing plant supplied all the hot dogs, bratwurst, hams, etc. I'm not sure where the fresh meat was processed after Karl Ehmer sold his upstate farms.
The retail store on Fresh Pond Road has also closed. Another story on the closure:
http://www.timesnewsweekly.com/news/2010-09-30/Local_News/Best_Butcher_On__Block_Will_Close.html

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sun, 12/12/10 12:10 PM
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Karl Ehmer's in Hillsdale, N.J. is still open. All of their products come from the Ridgewood plant with one glaring exception. The German style franks sold at this location come from Kocher's Continental Provisions in Ridgefield Park, N.J. The people who own Karl Ehmer's were not happy that one of their stores was selling a hot dog not made by them.
 
A few years back I called the Ridgewood plant and spoke with someone in charge. I told him that I couldn't sample Karl Ehmer's franks because they weren't sold in Hillsdale, so he sent me some. They were good, but not as good as those that came from Kocher's.

ken8038
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sun, 12/12/10 2:18 PM
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Thanks John and David.
 
I should have been more specific in my post above, the Ehmer product I've really liked all these years is their bratwurst. As you said John, thier dogs (which I've had from their other stores) are not as good as the Hillsdale Kocher franks.
 
Oh, and the Bavarian Festival was in Barnesville (near Jim Thorpe), not Barnsboro. That's where I first tasted Ehmer's bratwurst.
 
Thanks again.
 

David_NYC
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sun, 12/12/10 9:46 PM
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I didn't have my reading glasses with me when I visited Jack's, but I am 99% certain the Karl Ehmer bratwurst and skinless hot dogs sold there on Friday were made by Hummel Brothers in their New Haven plant. Bittersweet moment, for one of my earliest memories is of my dad taking me to Karl Ehmer's store at the plant on Saturday mornings. He would buy meat, including their bratwurst. He used to buy the UNCOOKED version. The taste of Ehmer's bratwurst didn't change much over the years.
 
Hummel, of course, makes excellent franks, bratwurst, etc. It will be interesting to see if Hummel or Ehmer recipes will be used.

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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Mon, 12/13/10 8:09 AM
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Interesting stuff...thanks for the updates. I need to head over to my local Karl Ehmer...Wednesday is when they get the fresh Silver Bell Lithuanian bread...and see what they have to say about all this. I hadn't really noticed any changes of late, but can't say I have been paying close attention. My memories of Karl Ehmer are similar to yours David, I recall going in there as a boy and always getting a free cocktail frank to munch on, as did all the kids.

David_NYC
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Mon, 12/13/10 8:59 AM
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Wow, I forgot all about the free handouts for the kids. I must be a bit older than Tony. I now remember getting a slice of bologna instead.

Tony Bad
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Mon, 12/13/10 9:52 AM
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David_NYC


Wow, I forgot all about the free handouts for the kids. I must be a bit older than Tony. I now remember getting a slice of bologna instead.

 
I think the Forest  Pork store gave the bologna slices...or I could have it backwards. My handouts were in the early 1960's to give you a time frame. Those handouts, the big white display cases, and the sawdust floors are some of my earliest memories.

ScreenBear
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 12/17/10 10:32 AM
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 Here’s a quick review of the newest Jimmy Buff’s, New Jersey’s legendary Italian Hot Dog emporium, which opened Wednesday, December 15, 2010, at 506 Boulevard, Kenilworth, New Jersey.
 
 The good news is that the double Italian Hot Dog I purchased was quite delicious. I’d give it an 8.5 out of 10, with the only demerit attributed to the scant amount of peppers adorning the sandwich, made of good, sturdy pizza bread that was just the right taste and consistency, and quite ample. The potatoes, thin-sliced round fries, were world class, and somewhat reminiscent of the golden spuds Charlie and Sons in Union made years ago…nice and crispy, not too oily.
 
  The onions were plentiful and good.
 
  The franks were Best Provision, all-beef, 8-to-a-pound natural casing, which were quite fine and fried just right…but somewhat of a surprise. Here’s why: Some strict constructionists would say natural casing is a no-no because an Italian Hot Dog, with its multifarious elements and hence different resiliencies and textures, shouldn't offer an extra challenge to the bite that a natural casing frankfurter presents.
 
  However, that might be like complaining that the car dealership gave you leather seats at no cost, even though you didn’t order them. N/c (natural casing) is more expensive and hence offers more value for the money. And, if you don't mind a little extra chomping and that snap, why not? They were good…and served hot.
 
 The restaurant space is roomy, pleasant, and decorated stylishly, though there are small, connected booths rather than tables. And if one eats doubles on a very regular basis, he or she might wish the tables were arranged a little farther from their attached benches. The bathroom (1) was clean.
 
 The location is great….prominent on the Boulevard, with lots of street parking, as well as a parking lot behind the store. It is easily reachable from Route #22, only about a mile away, and from Garden State Parkway exit #138, just a half mile or so away.
 
 The unfortunate part of today’s visit on Thursday, December 16, a day after the store opened, is that there didn’t yet seem to be a preparation system in place to accommodate more than a couple customers, whereas there were about 17 people waiting for their food when I and my two pals entered the establishment at 2 p.m.
 
  We ordered 2 doubles ($7 each), a single ($4.25) and three medium Pepsi sodas ($1.80 each), and received them 25 minutes after ordering. I would consider no more than an 8 to 10 minute wait acceptable.
 
  However, everyone seemed to be in a very patient, pleasant and understanding mood.
There was a nice anticipation in the air…a new Buff’s.  We would be fair. When the dogs turned out to be good, it made us appreciate our civility. I was surprised, though, that the management hadn’t hired some extra help, just at least until they had their preparation down pat… so less patient and tolerant folks than we wouldn’t be turned off by this first impression.
 
  Patrons kept coming in.  And later, after going to a coffee shop with my friends and passing by Jimmy Buff’s again at 5 p.m., there were still customers filing in. Assuming the new Jimmy Buff’s gets up to speed soon and shortens considerably the wait for an order, from what I saw today this could be a very, very successful enterprise.
 
Tip: ---Unless you like a lot of ice in your fountain drink, stipulate only a moderate amount of it in your beverage.
 
  P.S. ---The red Jimmy Buff’s sign outside, above the storefront, is very attractive.

  Jimmy Buff’s is located at 506 Boulevard, Kenilworth, N.J., and is open 7 days a week, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. The phone number is 908-276- BUFF (2833).
 
  The Bear
 

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 12/17/10 8:12 PM
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Now that's one heck of a review. Screenbear, I wish I could write like you. I enjoyed your post and agree with you for the most part as I had a similar experience. I usually wait until a place has the chance to "work out the kinks" but I wanted to check out the new restaurant and receive a free tee shirt as one of the first customers on Opening Day.

I went Wednesday at 4:30 right after work. The place is big and there were some people sitting down waiting for their orders and about 3 others at the counter ordering. I placed my order and waited about a half hour. Much too long and they had about 7 people working. The first person took my order, the cashier later repeated it and got it wrong. Finally the cook/owner asked me himself. I chalk this up to being new. I always wait awhile to make a final judgement on service. In a few weeks we'll see if they got the kinks worked out. There are posts on the Kenilworth forum complaining about the long wait.

As for the sandwich itself, it was very good overall. Everything was fresh and tasty. The bread was sturdy as you said and better than what most places use. Better than Charlies, that's for sure. The only pizza bread that I would prefer is what the East Hanover location uses. The potatoes were sliced rather than in chunks and had the right consistency. Not too greasy, not too dry. Just right. Slightly smaller in size than the other Buff's locations.

The peppers were well done like I prefer. There could have been more, but I wouldn't consider the amount on mine scant. Probably because I order my sandwich without onions, and to compensate they might add more peppers. The mustard was excellent deli mustard (Admiration brand, my favorite) and placed on the bread before the ingredients are added. This is the right way.

Now to the dogs. Normally I prefer a natural casing frank. My favorite is the 5 to a lb footlong served at Jimmy Buff's in East Hanover. I also love their smaller fried pushcart dogs. But I prefer a skinless dog on an Italian Hot Dog. Natural casing isn't a deal breaker, but to me it interferes with the synergy between the ingredients that makes the whole sandwich greater than the sum of it's parts. Mrferrari actually makes a better argument for their exclusion than I did even though he prefers them. I've had natural casing franks on an Italian Hot Dog before. Jo Jo's in Toms River has them as does Dickie Dees in Newark.

One thing I disagree with in the above post. The hot dogs served at Jimmy Buffs in Kenilworth are definitely not 8 to a lb. I would bet on it. I don't even think they are 10 to a lb. More like 12. Which is my only complaint about my experience other than the long wait. The dogs are prepared well; are hot, juicy, and fresh. But too small. And the size makes the snap stand out all the more. For lack of a better description, let me say that the sandwich was slightly out of balance. But this is a small criticism in an otherwise very good Italian Hot Dog. They got the most important things right. Good fresh pizza bread. The right brand of dog. Peppers, potatoes and franks fresh and well prepared. They have to work on the service aspect or they will lose customers. People don't won't to wait 30-40 minutes, especially at lunch when they might only have a half hour. Use bigger dogs and give more peppers is what I would suggest.


joerogo
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 12/17/10 8:41 PM
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ScreenBear & John Fox, Thanks for the thorough review of the new Buff's.  After reading both reviews, I felt like I ate there with you.  Only without the heartburn
 
John, you mentioned the owner, is this a franchise?

ScreenBear
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 12/17/10 9:55 PM
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John, Joe, 
 
  Thanks for the compliments. 
 
  John, I myself remarked to my pals that I thought the dogs were n/c 10's. But, just to be sure, I asked the fellow back in the kitchen. "Best, natural casing 10s, right," I asked? 
 
  He replied, "Nope, 8's"... so I took him at his word. 
 
The Bear
 
 

ken8038
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/18/10 9:58 AM
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Bear and John: Thanks for the reviews. Since I have no patience at all I will wait a while to try this one out, but it's on the list. I also want to try out Big Blue's (mentioned on the Munchmobile forum, 11 N. Wood Ave, Linden). I'm sure I've driven by there 50 times and I still can't picture it.
 
As for me, I prefer natural casing, no matter how the dog is being served.
 
John, you've mentioned Admiration mustard before, I think. Is it available at retail anywhere that you know of?
 
Thanks again.

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/18/10 12:17 PM
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Ken,
 
The only place I know of that you can purchase Admiration mustard other than Restaurant Depot is Karis, the store across the street from Best's and owned by them. Corrado's in Clifton next to Papaya King also carries it.

David_NYC
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/18/10 12:24 PM
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John mentioned a few places in this post a while back:
http://www.roadfood.com/Forums/fb.ashx?m=100293
 
Admiration at 1-800-salad-oil has helped me find outlets in the past. I see it from time-to-time at food stores that carry bulk sizes as well as food service cash and carry stores. Admiration mustards are sold in gallon jugs.
 
Edit: John posted while I was composing. Sorry about that.
<message edited by David_NYC on Sat, 12/18/10 12:26 PM>

ken8038
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/18/10 4:11 PM
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Guys, thanks for the info on Admiration mustard. I go to Corrado's every once in a while, next time I'm up there I'll look for it. Since it's not made in consumer sizes I guess I'll have to get a gallon and break it down into smaller jars. A gallon of mustard taking up most of the top shelf of the refrigerator would be fine with me, but my wife probably wouldn't be to happy about it.

Dog Boss
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/18/10 10:53 PM
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you folk's like this stuff ,  Admiration Mustard ?  it's bottom line condiments ......... mustard is ok...... the mayo is the pit's ..........  jmo 

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sun, 12/19/10 10:47 AM
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Nah, I disagree. Although I've never tried their salad dressings, I hear they are among the best. I love their deli mustard and their mayonnaise is better than Hellman's. It's tangy and delicious. They serve it at Five Guys.

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Tue, 12/21/10 7:03 PM
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After reading some posts on the Munchmobile Forum and remembering what one of my co workers told me about the Italian Hot Dog at Big Blue, I decided to go today. I had stopped in once without buying anything, so I knew where it was (Wood Ave. and Eliz. Ave) and what it looked like. Below is what I posted on nj.com.

Tiny place as hotrodford described with only 4 little booths. This is the quintessential hole in the wall. I stopped in shortly after 1 PM. There was a woman at the counter working the register and making sandwiches and two cooks who came out of the back occasionally. They were busy, but I was able to talk with all of them on and off after I ordered a double Italian Hot Dog. Let me suggest a double which goes for $5.75. A single is $4.75.

From talking with everyone I was able to determine that this place has been around for approximately 50 years. The bread used comes from America's Bakery in Irvington which supplies Jimmy Buff's Kenilworth and Scotch Plains restaurants as well as Tommy's in Elizabeth. Impressive for such a tiny place. The dogs are Best's skinless 10 to a lb. Potatoes are smaller than the chunks served at Dickie Dees, Bubba's, and others, but bigger than the thinly sliced potatoes at Tommy's and Buff's Kenilworth. I would describe them as wedges. There were a few pieces that could be described as chunks. The peppers were cut in fairly small pieces and there were plenty of red and green ones. This made up the dog I was about to eat.

As for the dog as a whole, I would say that it lived up to or exceeded what I had heard about and expected. The sandwich was very big and filling, about as substantial as the monster from Tommy's. But much cheaper at $5.75. And that's including tax I believe. Everything but the peppers were prepared in a deep fryer. Peppers were grilled. The potatoes were fried to a golden brown and were very good, among the best. These were bigger than what I'm used to, but I loved them. There were so many, I put most on the side. The bread was excellent and very fresh. I didn't ask, but they must sell a lot of Italian Hot Dogs. Along with the menu on the wall listing their sandwiches and other offerings, there is a big sign mentioning the Italian Hot Dog.

The hot dogs were skinless, deep fried and tasty. The peppers were also very good and also different than what you usually get in an Italian Hot Dog. There are plenty of red and green peppers over the dogs and under the potatoes. No one can accuse this place of skimping on the peppers. They were soft, tangy, and delicious. They tasted as though they were marinated. I asked the cook if they were from a can or jar and he said that they were. There was some similarity to the peppers at Dickie Dees. I don't like the peppers at Dees, but I like them at Big Blues. The difference is that they are soft at Blues, tastier, and more abundant.

Big Blues Italian Hot Dog, like other places serving the Italian Hot Dog, has their own way of making it. Each place has a few little things that make them unique as far as ingredients and preparation. Big Blues peppers are a little different than what you usually get. But in a good way. So are the potatoes.

I consider Big Blues Italian Hot Dog to be a top notch example of the style. Big sandwich, fresh and plentiful ingredients prepared well, with their own unique take. And less than what you pay at most places that are now $7 and up. Well worth trying, and like hotrodford and mrferrari stated, I can't believe a place like this has stayed off the radar screen and this forum for so long.

leethebard
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Tue, 12/21/10 7:44 PM
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Great and thorough report, as usual John. Looks like a winner. One question: Is the bread used a half pizza bread?

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Tue, 12/21/10 7:49 PM
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Yes.

leethebard
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Tue, 12/21/10 8:34 PM
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Well,then,this sounds like a keeper!!!!

ScreenBear
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Tue, 12/21/10 11:51 PM
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John,
  Thanks for venturing out in the cause of Hotdogdom. I'm amazed, not only by the fact that Big Blue earned such high praise, but that there might be other such gems hiding right under our frankfurter identifying noses. 
   It reminds me of the conclusion the Academy of Science came to in the late 19th Century...that everything important had now been invented...that there would be nothing new under the sun.
  And here we are, we good men and women of Hot Dog enthusiasm, complacent with our established routine of purveyors and the storied legends surrounding them...and then John, like a Balboa or Pizarro, returns from his voyage and regales us with tales of wondrous finds.
  Just think, the Italian Hot Dog answer to Bill Gates, perhaps yet a teenager, might right now be trying different techniques in his or her kitchen, striving to one day set the Italian Hot Dog World on its ear with the greatest permutation of the culinary classic yet. Ah, hope springs eternal. 
  The Bear
 
 

ken8038
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Wed, 12/22/10 7:03 PM
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Thanks John for your usual and thorough review of Big Blue. Another place added to my to-do list.

pimple2
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 12/23/10 10:05 PM
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What is the forum's opinion of Hatfield's hot dogs? Have seen Hatfield's mentioned with approval re: hot beef links by some of the AZ/TX folk, so was curious.
 
Regarding the same Texas hot beef sausage, the Johnsonville brand was suggested as an alternative. Regionally, Johnsonville carries its Andouille, that I have found makes a tasty mildly spicy hot dog when cooked by the dirty water method. Pulls out the salt, fat and spice. Nice casing, crunch and meaty flavor. Nothing else needed.  Too salty for me when grilled. Anyone tried this? Prices not bad,  $3 moved up to $3.50 recently/lb, compared to $4.49/Sabretts w/natural casing, & Hebrew National.
 
Zweigle's is one style I do not like, too much sage for me, where you cannot taste anything else, and the internal texture is not to my taste either. The preferred upstate NY pork grind, e.g. Hoffmans, is too fine, and definitely not to my taste.
 
The  pork substitute for beef franks that  I like best is Gaspar's linguica, although their prices [6.59/lb] are becoming way too high. Any comments on this sausage and on using this as a moderately spicy but interesting frank with a coarser grind?
 

Benzee
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 12/24/10 10:27 PM
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Hello all ,
Great reports as usual everyone .
Fantastic reading
Benzee

pimple2
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 12/25/10 1:05 AM
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Sorry! Did not pay attention to the thread title close enough! Got engrossed with  John's hotdog gospels and forgot about the NJ bit [John has that effect!] & wrote in my stuff. So where should I move/repost it?
 
Thanks.
 
P.S. Re: Best's, I received an exceedingly courteous personal response following a query to their Sales Department. Although they must be terribly busy, that they took time out to reply to customer shows how seriously they pay attention to every detail. Thank you, Best's.
<message edited by pimple2 on Sat, 12/25/10 1:15 AM>

foobuc
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 12/30/10 2:16 PM
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ok i just left the new Jimmy Buff's in Kenilworth location.  Got there slightly after noontime and there was a decent crowd.  I ordered a double italian hot dog no onions with peppers, potatoes and mustard- to go just in case i got busy with work and had to leave.  Girl took my order, i get my food after a minor wait, and i open it up as i sat down to eat, and it is filled with a large amount of potatoes(good!), a ton of onions(not good!) and 3, yes 3, green peppers(not good again).  Rather then beef about it i took the onions out and just ate it.  I will say the sandwich was fresh and very good .  I will accept it as "growing pains" maybe because it was mostly kids working there?  I don't know if the girl messed it up when taking the order or if they messed it up in the back.  So, on a good note, i will return and there is also plenty of parking around there even with all the snow on the ground.

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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Mon, 01/3/11 9:59 AM
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Dateline, Jimmy Buff's, Kenilworth, N.J.---Good news, according to a friend who went to Kenilworth, New Jersey's,  Jimmy Buff's a few days ago. He reports that the crew, none of whom he recognized from our Day #2 visit, took his order and promptly had his single Italian hot dog and a friend's double sausage, ready, and perfectly prepared, in about 10 minutes flat.
 
The Bear

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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Mon, 01/3/11 6:01 PM
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I stopped by the new Jimmy Buff's last week-we had one double combo, one double frank, and one double sausage.  If there was a quarter of a pepper among all three sandwiches it would be a lot.  Sausage was a bit 'meh', dogs were fine.  There is a high counter, so you can't see the cooks assembling the sandwiches.  Very dry and humorless staff.  I think I'll stick with E. Hanover.

foobuc
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Mon, 01/3/11 8:21 PM
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so  if someone on here works for J Buffs Kenilworth  or knows someone who does, tell them  that THEY NEED TO PUT MORE PEPPERS ON THEIR ITALIAN HOT DOGS!! 

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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 01/6/11 2:06 AM
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The best ones I've had are from Pulaski from NJ, their wedding sausage is to die for, well, actually every sausage/hot dogs in their store is to die for - at least for me.

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 01/6/11 6:54 AM
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It's been a few years since I've been to Pulaski, but like every pork store/butcher shop I've been to, Pulaski makes good hot dogs. Beef and pork, but spicier than your normal German style frank. Probably because it's Polish owned and the Polish prefer a spicier sausage. Pulaski is located on Wood Ave. in Linden. You can get their franks and some of their other sausages in some A&P's in Union County.
 
I've since been back to Big Blues in Linden for an Italian Hot Dog. This time I went to the end of the store and watched my sandwich being made. The cook who prepared it spoke better English than the guy I questioned about the peppers last time. He told me that the peppers are NOT from a can or jar. They are prepared and marinated at Big Blues and cooked on the griddle. They put a good amount on, and they are very good. Tangy and a little different than what you get from other places. Once again the potatoes were excellent as was the whole sandwich. A ton of potatoes made this a very heavy sandwich. Well worth $5.75.
 
I wanted to return to Jimmy Buff's Kenilworth. Two days ago (Tuesday) I phoned in an order at 7PM. I was told that it would be at least 30 minutes even though I was picking it up. I told them to forget it and wound up at Big Blues for the second time in 2 weeks. I want to try Buff's again and hope that they get past their beginning stage. Hopefully they were just unusually busy.

Dog Boss
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/7/11 6:12 PM
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John Fox


It's been a few years since I've been to Pulaski, but like every pork store/butcher shop I've been to, Pulaski makes good hot dogs. Beef and pork, but spicier than your normal German style frank. Probably because it's Polish owned and the Polish prefer a spicier sausage. Pulaski is located on Wood Ave. in Linden. You can get their franks and some of their other sausages in some A&P's in Union County.

I've since been back to Big Blues in Linden for an Italian Hot Dog. This time I went to the end of the store and watched my sandwich being made. The cook who prepared it spoke better English than the guy I questioned about the peppers last time. He told me that the peppers are NOT from a can or jar. They are prepared and marinated at Big Blues and cooked on the griddle. They put a good amount on, and they are very good. Tangy and a little different than what you get from other places. Once again the potatoes were excellent as was the whole sandwich. A ton of potatoes made this a very heavy sandwich. Well worth $5.75. ( yes.......it's been worth the stop............... )

I wanted to return to Jimmy Buff's Kenilworth. Two days ago (Tuesday) I phoned in an order at 7PM. I was told that it would be at least 30 minutes even though I was picking it up. I told them to forget it and wound up at Big Blues for the second time in 2 weeks. I want to try Buff's again and hope that they get past their beginning stage. Hopefully they were just unusually busy.
New and theres a major time issue ................ i guess, no time trial's before opening the door for business ..... i guess no prior experience need ................................................


johnlockedema
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/7/11 6:57 PM
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Just a heads up-yesterday I picked up a 5lb package (they don't sell them loose) of Hatfields natural casing beef/pork 8/lb hot dogs for $12.50 at the Green Village Packing Company in Green Village, NJ.  (Outside of Chatham).  They are a true slaughterhouse, with limited retail on Thurs/Fri (8-5:30) and Sat (8-3).  They also have great hanger steak, tri-tip, and whatever else you'd want from a butcher.  If you want something specific call ahead-973 377 0875.  I picked up two gorgeous NY strips 2" thick that they sliced and trimmed to order.  Since it's a slaughterhouse the retail room does have a funky smell, just wanted to warn you!

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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 01/8/11 6:29 AM
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I was off from work Thursday so I decided to give Jimmy Buff's another shot. I called in my order shortly after 1 PM and was told the wait would be 15 minutes. I got there a little after 10 minutes and my Italian Hot Dog and my wife's single sausage sandwich was there waiting for me.
 
The sandwich was very good. The bread (same as Big Blues) is quality pizza bread; definitely in my top 3 along with Sorrento's in East Hanover and Carmen's in Union. The peppers, hot dogs and potatoes were still hot and cooked perfectly. The hot dogs in my opinion are way too small. The potatoes are plentiful and have the right amount of grease. They are as good (and maybe better) than any potatoes you will find on an Italian Hot Dog. The few peppers I had (like about 5) were tasty and nice and soft the way I like them. But way too few. My wife had just one pepper on her sausage sandwich!
 
Overall I like the sandwich as the ingredients are very good and prepared just right. But the dogs are tiny and the peppers are almost non existent. If the owner would use bigger dogs and give more peppers, his sandwich would rival his cousin's.
 
Big Blues uses bigger dogs, gives a good amount of peppers, and while Buff's puts a good amount of potatoes on the sandwich, Blues puts on so many you have to take some off. And the cost is $5.75 with tax compared to over $7.00. After eating the whole sandwich at Buff's I was satisfied. After Big Blues I was stuffed.
 
I do like both places but Buff's really should put on more than a few peppers.

ken8038
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sat, 01/8/11 12:16 PM
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Johnlockedema: Thanks for the tip on the Green Village Packing Company. It always amazes me that these sort of places exist in NJ and they NEVER get any publicity, yet they seem to offer a superior product. I see they have a website. I'm going to give them a try for steaks and Hot dogs soon:
http://www.greenvillagepacking.com/
 
John Fox: Thanks for another review of Kenilworth Jimmy Buffs. From the variations from visit to visit on how they prepare the Italian Dogs, it looks like they are not training thier help very well and not "minding the store"  either.
 
I definately need to get to Big Blues.
 

ken8038
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 01/13/11 7:32 PM
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<<I definately need to get to Big Blues. >>
 
Well, today I did, for an Italian Double Hot Dog and let me tll you all this is one hell of a sandwich! It must weigh at least 2 pounds, all of it tasty and terrific. I was really impressed with the bread, it held up very well against the mountain of potatoes, onions and peppers that were packed inside.
 
This place is a real find (that's only been there for at least 40 years). That's one of the big differences I find between NY and NJ. If this place was in Brooklyn for example, the bloggers would have been all over it years ago. In NJ, hardly anyone outside Linden has ever heard of it. Thanks again John for getting the word out to us.

ScreenBear
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 01/13/11 9:36 PM
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I continue to be amazed. I am a hot dog enthusiast. I have several friends who are hot dog aficionados. And yet, until recently, I never heard of Big Blues, the biggest news to hit HotDogVille since, well, Jimmy Buff's opened its Kenilworth store. 
 
  How could this have eluded us? Is someone playing a trick on us? If we look at old photos of the Big Blues location, will the restaurant be there?   Is this the Twilight Zone episode about the great new  Italian Hot Dog restaurant in Linden, N.J., ....the episode they lost and hence never showed?
  The Bear

John Fox
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John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/14/11 8:01 AM
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The above link is an article in the Star Ledger about a new truck called Soup or Dogs. The owner, Betsy Penrose, is a former coworker of mine who left to open her Soup Store in Rahway. Known as the Soup Lady she now has her truck serving both soup and hot dogs.
 
I disgree with Pete Genovese who says that you come here for the soup. I come for the hot dogs. Dirty water Sabretts with a natural casing that are prepared right which means they are hot enough, fresh, and not left in the water too long. What sets Betsy's dogs apart from others is the chili. The dogs are great with just mustard, but the chili is very tasty and beefy. Not overly spicy. I like it better than Dees in Roselle Park which is where I usually go when in the mood for a dirty water Sabrett.
 
I was going to post about Soup or Dogs but Betsy suggested I wait until she moved to her current location (RT 27 in Iselin) and made a few changes to her chili. I forgot if she was going to add more varieties or change her current chili which is fine by the way. I didn't get around to returning, but I will soon as I have some time off next week. Check out the dogs. If you're a soup person, hers are considered very good. I can't get past the hot dogs.

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Wed, 01/19/11 7:07 PM
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Out of this World is the name of a new hot dog restaurant that will be opening on Galloping Hill Rd. and Westfield Ave. in Elizabeth. This is the site of the former Philadelphia Grille. I spoke with the owner and got some information about the hot dogs that will be offered. They will be serving two types. A Thumann's deep fryer and a Vienna Beef hot dog. The place will specialize in a variety of toppings including a Texas Weiner chili. The Vienna beef dog will be served separately or in a Chicago style hot dog. From talking with the owner who will be running the restaurant with her son, I can tell they know what they are doing. I havehave high hopes for Out of this World. The ingredients will be shipped in from Chicago including the special neon green relish. The dogs will be heated (not boiled) in water. If you just order a beef dog (Vienna) and not a Chicago style, you can have it prepared the way you want. The dogs will be natural casing and 6 to a lb.

There will also be Polish Sausage sandwiches and a special dog of the month which will be made of an exotic sausage such as alligator. Similar to Hot Doug's out of Chicago.

I'm looking forward to their opening which will be February 1st. The only other place in New Jersey that I know of where you can get a Vienna Beef frank is a place in Matawan called the Cheesesteak Factory. I was there and the dogs weren't prepared well at all. They were a sickening greenish gray. The owners of Out of this World have done a lot of research regarding New Jersey and Chicago Hot Dogs and are looking forward to opening and serving the first authentic Chicago style hot dog since J's Beef in Linden closed 4 years ago.

johnlockedema
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Wed, 01/19/11 7:47 PM
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Funny story.  My dad winters in Palm Springs, but he doesn't leave until after Xmas.  He calls me yesterday and asks 'did you have one of your cars serviced and billed to my credit card?'  I told him no, and he asked 'did I tell your son Peter he could have some service done on his Jeep?'  Again, I said no, why are you asking.  He says 'I've got a $140 charge on my credit card from Teddy's Garage.'
 
I had to remind him that he took us all out (including six grandchildren) one night for hot dogs and hamburgers-at The Garage here in Millburn!

John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/21/11 7:22 AM
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That is funny!

leethebard
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/21/11 11:11 AM
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 !!!!


Michael Hoffman
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/21/11 1:21 PM
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They have hot dogs in New Jersey?
 

leethebard
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/21/11 1:56 PM
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Michael Hoffman


They have hot dogs in New Jersey?


More per square inch than anywhere else!!!!!!

Michael Hoffman
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 01/21/11 2:04 PM
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John Fox
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Tue, 01/25/11 1:01 PM
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Due to ongoing construction, the opening of Out of this World will be delayed until March 1st.

yuppicide
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Tue, 01/25/11 8:47 PM
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My Aunt is moving to Florida, so I went to say goodbye. She had a house in Middlesex and I grew up in Green Brook half of my life, so what better reason to take the 30 - 40 minute drive back for Texas Weiners!
 
I went to J&G in Dunellen. I like their dogs a lot. I ordered 10 and they threw in a free one. My Girifriend went outside to "get some fresh air", but later on she says it's because I blushed at the girl behind the counter because I was talking to her. I didn't even know I was blushing, but I believe it was because of the free hot dog. Because I got so many dogs, they put them in a box I found out they use Grote & Weigel. Nice flavor and snap. I'm gonna order some for myself.
 
On the way home I got to thinking. There's McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's, and countless other burger franchises.. how come I don't see any huge hot dog franchises.. or heck I don't know of any at all! I also don't know of any drive-thru hot dog places. You can't count some place like Sonic who has a hot dog on their menu once in awhile. I mean a place that's purely dogs and fries and such.

leethebard
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Wed, 01/26/11 2:16 AM
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Hell...and why don't most fast food burger joints even offer a hotdog??...Lord they'd be easy enough to mass produce!!

ScreenBear
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Wed, 01/26/11 10:30 AM
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Many hot dog aficionados agree that fanciers of the frankfurter prefer their tube steak emporiums to evoke individuality, to have character... all of which is usually lost in a chain. 
 
  However, there are indeed  a few hot dog chains, most of which I believe are out West. I.e.-- Wienerschnitzel.
 
  Insofar as burger chains adding hot dogs, I once had a frank that was being test marketed at McDonald's in Middlebury, Vermont. All beef, it was OK.  But I guess the test didn't end positively. Doubtless, it has to do with profit, or rather the lack thereof. 
  The Bear

leethebard
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Wed, 01/26/11 11:08 AM
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Ah yes, profit....a crappy hotdog,I think,is easier to spot by taste than a crappy hamburger...remember "all beef" simply means came from a cow...a friend who once worked in a "trashburger" factory told me Micky d's added bone marrow to the ground meat!

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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 01/27/11 8:11 AM
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One reason why there are no national hot dog chains is that hot dogs are mostly regional. A quality all beef dog wouldn't sell in many regions where they prefer blander low quality dogs. Nathan's and Weinerschnitzel are probably the closest thing to national chains.
 
People go to Burger King and McDonalds for hamburgers, not hot dogs. Dunkin Donuts was supposed to offer a hot dog in New England. I don't think that ever happenned.

johnlockedema
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Thu, 01/27/11 8:11 PM
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John, they failed with their Howdy Beefburger chain, but I don't know if they sold hot dogs there as well.  There's a nice thread about Howdy in the hamburger forum.

Benzee
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Sun, 01/30/11 3:28 PM
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Hello all ,
 
If John and Joe would ever give up their recipe for Grandmas Hungarian sauce I'm sure I could make Charlies Pool Room a National Chain  (:
Benzee

yuppicide
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 02/4/11 8:28 PM
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I hadn't even thought of those chains you mentioned. Oops.. how stupid of me. Nathan's sucks, though.

ConeyIslandLou
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RE: New Jersey Hot Dogs - Fri, 02/4/11 9:34 PM
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yuppicide


I hadn't even thought of those chains you mentioned. Oops.. how stupid of me. Nathan's sucks, though.

The problem with Nathans is that they just have lost any kind of consistency or quality control over the product. There is a HUGE difference between the Nathans you get at Stilwell and Surf, and the one your local gas station sells.  In the past, the only place you could get Nathans was at Coney Island. Then it was big deal when the Handwerker family opened a couple of satellite branches - one on Long Island and one in Yonkers. Then it was a REALLY big deal when they opened a branch at Times Square.  As far as I know, all of those branches were directly under control of the original family company. And no surprise, they were actually GOOD.  The dog and fries you got at TS was exactly the same as you got at Coney Island. 
 
Somewhere along the line, something happened though.  They closed the branch stores, and started licensing the name and product to organizations like the Riesce group for use in urban food courts, and no surprise, the quality suffered. They also licensed the product and name to people who specialized in airports and such, and the quality suffered. Then somebody got to sell the idea of the 'Nathans at your local gas station' - where frankly, I dont even know how they cook them. Again, the product got even worse. However,  they also seem to  have a separate divison which sells individual franchises for malls - and some of those are actually pretty good - the one in my local mall actually does a decent job, as the dogs and fries are cooked exactly the way they are supposed to be, so I assume that somehow the corporation has better quality control over the standards at these locations.
 
So I perceive Nathans problem to be lack of consistency, due to the scattershot manner in the way its product is distributed, and overseen.

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