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 Tobins First Prize franks

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  • Total Posts: 3
  • Joined: 6/7/2007
  • Location: Brooklyn, NY
Tobins First Prize franks Thu, 06/7/07 12:57 AM (permalink)
I am not much of a hot dog eater today but growing up in Brooklyn (NY) in the 1950's and 1960's I had a few favorites:
- Tobins First Prize franks bought loose at the local butcher
- the hot dogs at the two Coral Drinks stands downtown on Fulton St.
- Nedicks with the split toasted buns.

Coral Drinks are long gone. Nedicks is also long gone although they opened a stand in Penn Station about 5(?) years ago. I tried it but it wasn't the same to me.

That leaves Tobins First Prize franks. As I said we bought them loose at the local butcher and boiled them but instead of eating them on buns we used to eat them on rectangular club rolls fresh from the local bakery, two fit in there perfectly. I still used to find the franks at some old time butcher shops until they closed up. That was maybe 20 years ago. About 8 years ago a friend surprised me with some packaged First Prize franks that he found in the Albany (NY) area.

Does anyone know of any stores that still carry Tobins First Prize franks in the metropolitan New York City area or in Albany?


PS- Does anyone know if they came in both a beef and pork variety?

    • Total Posts: 1862
    • Joined: 3/3/2006
    • Location: Johnson City, TN
    RE: Tobins First Prize franks Thu, 06/7/07 5:14 AM (permalink)
    looks like it is currently a john morrell product (whihc probably means it is pork)

    i'm sure they could tell you where to buy if you drop them a note off their site:


      • Total Posts: 2162
      • Joined: 8/1/2004
      • Location: New York, NY
      RE: Tobins First Prize franks Thu, 06/7/07 10:54 PM (permalink)
      I remember the franks from the two Coral stores. Everything they used came from Sabrett and Marathon - today the same company. I can reproduce them exactly today with Sabrett buns from Marathon Baking Company and Sabrett natural casing franks. Just grill them at low heat for a long time. Detailed instructions can be found in the various Sabrett threads and the New Jersey Hot Dogs thread in this forum.

      The reason for the Albany connection is that Tobin's plant was located there before being taken over by Morrell. All I have found at retail is skinless franks. The Price Chopper ( chain sells them. They have pushed as far south as Middletown, NY. I have seen them from time to time at NYC area markets. Will post if I find some, or perhaps someone else spotted them locally. They only seem to stay for a few months at a time in NYC, though.

      The ones I have seen at retail are all beef.

        • Total Posts: 3
        • Joined: 6/7/2007
        • Location: Brooklyn, NY
        RE: Tobins First Prize franks Tue, 06/12/07 10:38 PM (permalink)
        Thanks for the replies, guys. I had tried contacting them but got no response. I will be in Albany next week and check out Pricechoppers.

          • Total Posts: 89
          • Joined: 4/10/2007
          • Location: Belchertown, MA
          RE: Tobins First Prize franks Wed, 06/13/07 10:32 AM (permalink)
          BKDog, I grew up in Western Mass not far from the NY border and all of our grocery stores stocked Tobins First Prize, I think that they also packaged them as Premium First Prize, could be wrong but remember the packaging. Take care, Tom from Star0082

            • Total Posts: 372
            • Joined: 8/1/2003
            • Location: Pescadero, CA
            RE: Tobins First Prize franks Wed, 06/13/07 1:53 PM (permalink)
            I remember Tobins first prize they were made in Albany off central ave. I used to like them on Freihofer's buns.

            There was another good dog from upstate I think it was Bilinkski's. But I think the really great ones are from the Troy Pork Store. Used in the Little Famous Lunches dogs. I love them.

              • Total Posts: 3
              • Joined: 6/7/2007
              • Location: Brooklyn, NY
              RE: Tobins First Prize franks Thu, 06/28/07 11:36 PM (permalink)
              OK- I got my First Prize franks, both the all beef and the beef, chicken and pork variety from a Pricechoppers in Albany. I boiled them and ate them on a hard roll like we did when we were kids. The all beef franks were OK but it was the beef, chicken, pork franks that I really enjoyed. They pretty much tasted like I remembered them.

                • Total Posts: 126
                • Joined: 2/1/2004
                • Location: Amherst, NY
                RE: Tobins First Prize franks Fri, 06/29/07 10:38 PM (permalink)
                We use to get Tobins First Prize Franks in Buffalo area as a kid and I really enjoyed them. As a kid, I also liked Kleins, Freys and Sahlens all made in Buffalo. Tobins though were the "best of the best" back then. Today, Sahlen's survives but the product has definitely been "cheaped up".
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