Re:Hoffman hot dogs?
There are two types of natural casing hotdogs they produce:
1- Franks, also called red hots (which has to do with region names) which are your regular hotdogs. It's a german style hotdog, so they have a bologna type flavor. They are not over spiced. They are a mild hotdog. Flat grilling them brings out the flavor - much in the same way of grilling bologna.
2- Coneys, also called white hots, and snapper, (again, depending on your region) Coney - in CNY is a white hot. The taste would be akin to a bratwurst, but the texture is smooth like a hotdog. No grit. It's also kicked up a knotch with some spices. This is my favorite hotdog.
Hofmann also makes other sausages, including brotwurst, kielbasa, brockwurst, italian sausages. But it's the Frank and Coney department that has made Hofmann a Central NY tradition.
What's the best? Well, I've come to believe that one's taste, is based on the kinds of flavors one was brought up on. What hotdog was available at your first baseball game? or on the local street cart? or served at the local hotdog stand where people stood in long lines just for a couple hotdogs. Therefore, for me, a native Liverpudlian (Liverpool, NY) where the famous hotdog stand Heid's of Liverpool sits and sells Hofmann products, Hofmann is the standard of which all other hotdogs are measured. And none really measure up, except for , you guessed it: another syracuse sausage factory, Meier and Ranz, who make an excellent frank. A little more spice and a different mix of meat.
However, I can say that the good people of Rochester swear by their Zweigles, and the good people of Buffalo swear by their Sahlens. And ne'er the twains do meet.
So, is it the best? or, will you never eat another brand? nah - it's all dependent upon the taste buds you've been developing your whole life, and the expectations created therein.
Still, I've yet to find a White Hot/Snapper/Coney that is superior to Hofmann. And there nothing like the snap of a perfectly flat grilled Frank, with some char on the outside, snap to the tooth, and silky smooth interior enhanced only by a dab of german mustard. It's hotdog heaven, IMBHO (in my biased humble opinion), of course.