Of Vermont Hot Dogs

Author
ScreenBear
Double Chili Cheeseburger
  • Total Posts : 1505
  • Joined: 2005/09/18 09:58:00
  • Location: Westfield, NJ
  • Status: offline
2006/08/09 10:58:50 (permalink)

Of Vermont Hot Dogs

Does anyone know where I can get a McKenzie, beef/pork, natural casing Hot Dog prepared really well in the Burlington, Vermont area?

Let me tell you why I’m asking. I think the pork/ beef natural casing McKenzie frankfurter is a good dog, but an underrated dog. For the most part they’re warmed in steamers at convenience stores. But I’ve not been able to find one cooked on a griddle or fried. It is my opinion that a pork/beef dog turns out best either deep-fried or cooked on the griddle. I understand this may be a matter of taste.

I’m a hot dog enthusiast living in New Jersey. And naturally, the plethora of great hot dogs in this state keeps me quite occupied.

My question, then, is a busman’s holiday sort of inquiry. My adopted state, where I plan to locate in about two years, is Vermont. And unlike New Jersey, there doesn’t seem to be a specific hot dog identity per se. I.e.—Eastern New Jersey favors all beef dogs, boiled or charbroiled---the condiments usually mustard, sauerkraut and relish; Western N.J. goes for a pork/beef frank, usually deep fried, with a proclivity for mustard, chopped onion and pickle as the condiments. Naturally, there are permutations and variations throughout the state.

But I spot no patterns in Vermont. Perhaps this is symbolic of the spirit of individuality so evident in the Green Mountain State. All the same, of the several diners and restaurants I’ve surveyed in Vermont, most of the help didn’t know what brand of dog they served. One restaurateur thought my question was odd, as if it didn’t at all matter. We know different.

That said, I think the natural casing McKenzie frank is a very good product. It has a good snap and a well-balanced seasoning. In fact, I think it’s more knowingly spiced than several pork/beef wieners sold widely in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.

Yet, I don’t think the steamers in convenience stores show the McKenzies off to their truly best advantage. Therefore, I was wondering if you could recommend a Hot Dog place or restaurant, preferably in the Burlington, Vermont, area that, in your opinion, showers the sort of care on this frank that it deserves. Because, if so, I’d like to try it.

In any case, when next I visit Vermont, I’ll pan-fry a few on the stove. Of course that won’t provide the ambience that comes with visiting a place known for its hot dog preparation. But I’m fairly sure it will bear out my theory about this dog’s untapped potential.

Know a great hot dog purveyor in the Burlington, Vermont, area?

The Bear
#1

17 Replies Related Threads

    ScreenBear
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1505
    • Joined: 2005/09/18 09:58:00
    • Location: Westfield, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/08/19 23:55:29 (permalink)
    No Vermont hot dog buffs out there to give this inquiry a whirl?
    The Bear
    #2
    ScreenBear
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1505
    • Joined: 2005/09/18 09:58:00
    • Location: Westfield, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/01 22:51:03 (permalink)
    P.S.--Bought the natural casing McKenzie's and cooked them on a gas grill back in September. Good, but no better than the steamed ones at convenience stores. Guess they're meant to be cooked that way.
    The Bear
    #3
    GCD1962
    Hamburger
    • Total Posts : 66
    • Joined: 2006/09/13 22:43:00
    • Location: new canaan, CT
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/04 20:59:58 (permalink)
    Are you sure hot dogs are legal in VT. Seems like if it isn't organic something or other it's shunned in the state. The cheese and beers are great though!
    #4
    ScreenBear
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1505
    • Joined: 2005/09/18 09:58:00
    • Location: Westfield, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/04 21:51:52 (permalink)
    The only place in Vt. where I’ve found a modicum of enthusiasm for hot dogs, thus far, has been in Burlington where, for years, the "Hot Dog Lady" sold franks on Church Street, and around the college, where one vendor has a few carts selling a good sized Hebrew National to the students.

    I've no doubt there's a pocket here and there where a fine frank can be had. But no one's telling me about it.

    Otherwise, it's pretty much McKenzie’s, pork/beef, natural casing, steamed, sold predominantly in convenience stores. River Run, in Plainfield, Vt., famed for being writer David Mamet's favorite restaurant, sells a homemade corn dog, though which brand dog they used seemed uncertain when I asked.

    If there's a hot dog culture in the Green Mountain state, they're staying mum about it.
    The Bear
    #5
    Foodbme
    Porterhouse
    • Total Posts : 10353
    • Joined: 2006/09/01 14:56:00
    • Location: Gilbert, AZ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/04 23:05:53 (permalink)
    If it ain't organic and eco-friendly those VT Tree Huggers won't eat it
    #6
    MBFDFyre
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 243
    • Joined: 2006/11/18 07:51:00
    • Location: Near Burlington, VT
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/05 15:01:14 (permalink)
    As a Vermont "tree hugger", I de-test your thoughts that we are all eco-friendly and organically driven. I throw away tons of trash and none of it ends up in the recycling bin. And for organic, organic schmanic. I love pesticides in my food. Makes me feel like a man to know I have tons of bug killing chemicals in my body.

    Getting back to the original question, I am not a fan of the McKensie brand of hot dog. My brother though, loves them and won't eat anything else. I am not a fan of the skin or the flavor. There aren't too many hot dog vendors around. The Hot Dog lady is an instituion on the Church St Market place. Her prices are cheap and so is her hot dog. There is a guy at the Home Depot up here who is doing an awesome business. He started with a little cart years ago to a full fledge stand with condiment section and a seating area. He sells hebrew national. Interesting to note, when he was first there, he sold hot dogs and sausages, now only hot dogs. He charges $2.50 for a 1/4 pound dog. 50 cents for cheese and chili each. Not too bad. He always has a line. Ok, now I am digressing.

    Interesting side note, I grew up in Plainfield from about age 0 to 7. I remember the town a little but don't remember this place called River Run. Course I've probably been there before but was too little to remember it.
    #7
    ScreenBear
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1505
    • Joined: 2005/09/18 09:58:00
    • Location: Westfield, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/05 22:00:48 (permalink)
    The River Run, a Southern style, casual restaurant run by a Mr. Kennedy and his wife, if I'm not mistaken, is particularly famous for its catfish, hush puppies, pulled pork, etc. A cookbook emanating from the establishment is fairly well renowned in some cooking circles.

    You may Google River Run, Plainfield, Vt., and find a plethora of varying reviews, both positive and disappointed. My favorite meal there is breakfast.
    I believe I once read that the restaurant has been in existence since around since 1991, though I'm not positive of that.

    However, I'm positive it is right next door to Positive Pie, a rather good pizzeria known for its NYC style pizza, and just across the road from the Country Bookshop, a very nice place specializing in both used books of all sorts as well as literature and related items of antique value. Plainfield is home to the storied Goddard College.
    The Bear


    #8
    MBFDFyre
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 243
    • Joined: 2006/11/18 07:51:00
    • Location: Near Burlington, VT
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/06 05:44:21 (permalink)
    Oh, I am very aware of Goddard College. In my youth, I went to pre-kindergarten there. Three days in a row we set the fire alarm off cause we thought it was fun to go outside. Someone did it one day, I did it on day two and a third kid did it on day three. That had to be around 1979-80ish. If this place was founded in 1991 then that was long after I left there. My biggest memory of Plainfield is that steep a$$ hill by the Aubuchan's and a creemee place just down the road from there.
    #9
    wallhd
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 433
    • Joined: 2002/01/18 18:55:00
    • Location: Plattsburgh, NY
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/06 07:34:54 (permalink)
    I don't think that Vermont Act 250 allows hot dog stands.

    How about a tree huiggers special, a nice dish of sawdust from a tree hauled out of the woods by a horse, not a skidder, spiked with some of that watery stuff the natives call maple syurp?

    Tongue throughly planted in cheek of course!!

    WHD
    #10
    Ashphalt
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1644
    • Joined: 2005/09/14 11:31:00
    • Location: Sharon, MA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/06 09:22:03 (permalink)
    I haven't been in the area since the last century , but a local cousin of a friend turned us on to Maxi's butcher shop in Waterbury. Don't know if he's still in business, based on this article, but it was the kind of place I'd look for good dogs, or any meat. http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4196/is_20010715/ai_n10710343
    Maxi kept lollipops on the counter and he'd grab a hot dog from the case, spear it with a lollipop stick and give one to each kid. Shop was a little odd, too, kind of run-down looking old general store deal, you'd probably turn in your tracks at the door if you didn't have a recommendation, but great butcher, great meat.
    #11
    MBFDFyre
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 243
    • Joined: 2006/11/18 07:51:00
    • Location: Near Burlington, VT
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/06 09:53:57 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by wallhd

    I don't think that Vermont Act 250 allows hot dog stands.

    WHD


    Well, there are some around so I don't think it totally limits them. Maybe to certain areas but not totally.
    #12
    Ashphalt
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1644
    • Joined: 2005/09/14 11:31:00
    • Location: Sharon, MA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/06 09:59:35 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by MBFDFyre

    quote:
    Originally posted by wallhd

    I don't think that Vermont Act 250 allows hot dog stands.

    WHD


    Well, there are some around so I don't think it totally limits them. Maybe to certain areas but not totally.


    Now that they've let in WalMart, I'd guess anything goes!
    #13
    wallhd
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 433
    • Joined: 2002/01/18 18:55:00
    • Location: Plattsburgh, NY
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2006/12/06 18:39:13 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Ashphalt

    quote:
    Originally posted by MBFDFyre

    quote:
    Originally posted by wallhd

    I don't think that Vermont Act 250 allows hot dog stands.

    WHD


    Well, there are some around so I don't think it totally limits them. Maybe to certain areas but not totally.


    Now that they've let in WalMart, I'd guess anything goes!


    I think that both of you missed the sentence about "tongue planted firmly in cheek"!

    WHD
    #14
    ScreenBear
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1505
    • Joined: 2005/09/18 09:58:00
    • Location: Westfield, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2009/09/10 22:57:55 (permalink)
                                                         “Three Years Later”
     
    Three years later, I have found two places I never fail to get a hot dog from when I’m in the Green Mountain state.
     
      In South Burlington, Al’s French Frys [sic] is always a favorite stop. It has a retro look that really works. Perhaps that’s because it was retro before retro was cool. You see, Al’s has been pleasing palates since the late 1940s. It’s a nice clean place with lots of Roadfood charm, and the employees have a good, spirited attitude.
     
      While I consider the fresh cut French fries world class, the otherwise ordinary, McKenzie skinless, beef/pork, 10-to-a-lb. wiener acquits itself better than one would expect via rather fine preparation on a flat grill and the assurance that it will be delivered to your awaiting hand good and hot, ensconced in a New England bun. Here’s the site:
     
    http://www.alsfrenchfrys.com/
     
       Not far away, in Williston, at Maple Tree Plaza near the Christmas Tree Shop, is TJ’s Dawgs. TJ’s, operating out of a nice looking, wood-sided wagon he built on a tow trailer, serves a ¼ lb. Vienna Beef hot dog, also always delivered good and hot.
     
      Numerous toppings are offered. Plus, those who wish their dog run through the proverbial garden will find available--- there on the counter at no extra charge--- all the condiments necessary to making that Chicago gustatory experience a reality. To the best of my knowledge, no other hot dog purveyor in Vermont serves this famed, high quality Chicago frankfurter.  Oh, and there are nice, umbrella-covered chairs next to the wagon where one may enjoy their dog.
     
      Here’s a link to a site that has a photo of TJ’s:
     
    [link=http://whats4lunch.wordpress.com/2008/05/01/tjs-dawg-houses-new-house/]http://whats4lunch.wordpr...dawg-houses-new-house/[/link]
     
     The Bear
    post edited by ScreenBear - 2009/09/10 23:05:26
    #15
    John Fox
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 2339
    • Joined: 2000/12/03 14:29:00
    • Location: Union, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2009/09/13 08:23:32 (permalink)
    I was in Vermont a couple of weeks ago. It was only for 3 days as we had to get back to move my son into his dorm. Unfortunately I didn't get much of an opportunity to sample hot dogs. One day we went to Burlington and stopped by a guy selling hot dogs at a cart. This cart had a grill. I asked the brand and it was a Hatfield beef dog. Not the better N.Y. style you see in N.J. but the one sold in supermarkets. I've had it and didn't like it, so I passed.

    We had a late lunch at the Vermont Pub and brewery, also in Burlington. The menu advertised a quarter pound specialty hot dog. It sold for close to $6.00. I had the waitress check the brand. It was Oscar Mayer. Advertised as a specialty hot dog! I passed. Could get the same for a third of the price at any 7-11.

    We stopped at a place in Quechee so the women could shop at one of the outlets. There was a snack bar behind the store that sold hot dogs. I had one there. It was a Kayem beef and pork dog that was steamed. Although not my favorite way of preparing a dog, it was surprisingly very good. Quite tasty for a steamed beef and pork dog. Kayem is a quality dog.

    ScreenBear had mentioned McKenzie before, so I looked for them in the General Stores. I found skinless all beef, skinless beef/pork, and natural casing beef/pork in one pound packages. I was going to buy a pack but decided to take a look across the street to see what the other store had to offer. They had the natural casing McKenzie franks (beef and pork) loose in the deli section. I bought 2 of those to make at the house we were staying at in Pittsfield. I also brought 2 pounds of the Syd's dogs with us.

    The McKenzie dogs were pretty good, although I had them late at night after quite a few beers, so my palate might have been dulled somewhat. I think they may have been a little milder than the Kayem I had previously, but I could be wrong. McKenzie are made by Kayem in Vermont. I'm pretty sure they are 2 different recipes. The store I was in advertised the fact that they use McKenzie cold cuts.

    You can get a decent dog in Vermont, but they don't have a real hot dog culture. Beer on the other hand..... I visited the Vermont Pub and Brewery, Long Trail Brewing Company, and Otter Creek Brewing Company. Upon leaving the Vermont Pub and Brewery, I discovered that there were 3 other brewpubs within 2 blocks. Unfortunately I did not get the chance to get to them. Next time.
    #16
    David_NYC
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 2165
    • Joined: 2004/08/01 15:15:00
    • Location: New York, NY
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2009/09/13 13:12:24 (permalink)
    Screenbear: Found an email address for McKenzie hot dog inquiries. Sounds like this man should know:
    bill.mckenzie@mckenziecountryclassics.com
    #17
    ScreenBear
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1505
    • Joined: 2005/09/18 09:58:00
    • Location: Westfield, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Of Vermont Hot Dogs 2009/09/13 20:28:49 (permalink)
    David_NYC

    Screenbear: Found an email address for McKenzie hot dog inquiries. Sounds like this man should know:
    bill.mckenzie@mckenziecountryclassics.com


    I forgot the question.
     
      The Bear
    #18
    Jump to:
    © 2014 APG vNext Commercial Version 5.1