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 New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center

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  • Total Posts: 74
  • Joined: 4/26/2001
  • Location: New York City,
New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center Thu, 04/30/09 9:44 AM (permalink)
diod not know about this till today but there is a Hot Dog Event at the Astor Center (Too late for me to plan for it)
$25 bucks  Looks like a bunch of places will be serving samples of their dogs, speakers, etc.
Link to more info at Serious Eats NY

    • Total Posts: 357
    • Joined: 1/30/2007
    • Location: Branchburg N.J.
    Re:New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center Thu, 04/30/09 10:35 AM (permalink)

    i wonder if the 25 bucks covers the food as well?? in any case it sounds really cool and im going to try and make it!!!

      • Total Posts: 74
      • Joined: 4/26/2001
      • Location: New York City,
      Re:New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center Thu, 04/30/09 11:01 AM (permalink)
      From the link it does cover the food Paraphrased from site
      you'll be able to sample:
      • Chicago-style dogs, actually shipped in from Chicago by the good folks at Vienna Beef,
      • The Bulgogi Dog
      •  Crif Dogs'
      • And, of course, New York's all-beef natural casing dogs,
      • a tasting of even more hot dogs:
      • Red Hot Chicago beef
      • Thumann's beef-and-pork
      • Hofmann Snappys
      • Carolina Red Hots
      • Oscar Mayer supermarket dog
        John Fox

        • Total Posts: 2313
        • Joined: 12/3/2000
        • Location: Union, NJ
        Re:New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center Thu, 04/30/09 9:17 PM (permalink)
        I will be there as well. Thanks for posting about this mrphil. I was contacted via e-mail a couple of weeks ago and invited before it was announced. They just recently mentioned it on Serious Eats.

        The Thumann's beef and pork will be the deep fried version (rather than the griller) which will come from Crif's.

        I hope to see some of you there. I'll be wearing a New Jersey Hot Dog Tour tee shirt.
          John Fox

          • Total Posts: 2313
          • Joined: 12/3/2000
          • Location: Union, NJ
          Re:New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center Fri, 05/1/09 6:19 AM (permalink)
          They will also have Koegel's from Michigan which I've never had.

            John Fox

            • Total Posts: 2313
            • Joined: 12/3/2000
            • Location: Union, NJ
            Re:New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center Mon, 05/4/09 9:40 AM (permalink)
            I attended the Hot Dog Hootenanny yesterday and had a great time. Ed Levine of Serious Eats, Bruce Kraig, hot dog historian and author of Hot Dog: A Global History, and the people at the Astor Center did a great job running and organizing this event.

            There were 4 tables set up offering different hot dogs and a table where you could get beer (Kelso's brown ale) or prosecco. There was also a room that looked like a mini theatre with 38 seats. In this room Bruce Kraig talked about the history and culture of the hot dog as well as giving descriptions of the regional styles and naming some of the places that he visited. Questions and comments were encouraged and there was some good discussion.
            While Bruce was giving his presentation, each person was given a plate containing 7 small slices of different brands of hot dogs. Bruce talked about each brand and we sampled them one by one. Because this room could only hold 38 people, there were 4 or 5 presentations given through the course of the 3 hour event.

            The  seven samples given out were Thumann's beef and pork natural casing, Hofmann German franks (beef and pork), Hofmann's natural casing snappy griller (spicy white dog, sort of like a brat), Usinger's wieners (beef and pork), Oscar Mayer Wieners (beef, pork, and poultry), Carolina Packers skinless red hots (Who knows what were in these; probably all pork), and Koegel's Pickled Red Hots.

            I've had the first 5 before; Carolina Packers and Koegel's were new to me. I had hoped that the regular Koegel's that is popular at the Detroit Coney restaurants would be included.

            As for the dogs, the Koegel's pickled red hot was very spicy and vinegary. Sort of like a hot dog sauerbraten. I liked my sample, but don't think I would enjoy a whole hot dog. The Oscar Mayer wiener was not bad for what it is; a mass produced national hot dog. The people in my tasting didn't like it and complained that it was too salty. I'm glad it was included because it highlighted the difference between a mediocre supermarket dog with cheap ingredients and some quality franks made with better meat.

            The Carolina Packers Skinless Red Hots were pretty bad. The only bad dog (unless you consider Oscar Mayer bad instead of mediocre) in the bunch. But again, it is representative of the many brands that are offered at hot dog joints in the South where the focus is on the type of cole slaw and chili. This dog had an overly sweet, corn syrup flavor. It tasted of filler and cheap meat.

            The other 4 were very good. The Hofmann's snappy griller is sort of a cross between a hot dog and a brat. It's white, made of pork, veal, and beef, with a spicier flavor than a regular German style beef and pork dog. The regular Hofmann's German frank was very good, but milder than the Usinger's and Thumann's franks.

            Usinger's and Thumann's were the favorites of the people in my group as well as my 2 favorites. Thumann's got more votes (by a show of hands) with Usinger's second. There were a few who preferred the Hofmann's German franks. It was a great way to compare and taste the differences in the brands.

            In the main room were 4 different hot dogs offered that were continually being prepared and brought out from the kitchen. There were Crif Dogs with cream cheese and avocado that were wrapped in bacon. Crif's uses the Thumann's frank for deep frying that Rutt's Hut and many Jersey places do. It is prepared well at their restaurant. Some places that use this dog don't leave it in the oil long enough. Crif's does. I requested my dog without the cream cheese and avocado. A fine dog, just like I've had at Crif's in the past.

            The New York Hotdog and Coffee was next. They have been opened about a year in New York on Bleecker Street. The young woman I spoke with said that her mother owns the company and that there are 8 restaurants in Korea. They offer a few different hot dogs ( but for the tasting they prepared their bulgogi dog. This dog contained bulgogi, which is thinly sliced beef marinated in a Korean sauce with onions, lettuce, and pickle chips. The frank is actually a spicy sausage from Best's in Newark. At the restaurant you can get the regular Best frank rather than the spicy sausage. They switched recently from Sabrett to Best.

            I had mine without the onions and ate most of the bulgogi on the side rather than on the dog. I didn't expect to like this dog, but I did. The beef was sweet and delicious and provided a nice contrast to the spicy sausage. It's common in Korea, I'm told.

            The next dog was an authentic Chicago style dog. It didn't come from a known restaurant, but from someone in the food business who makes and sells his own sports peppers. The brand name escapes me. The dogs were natural casing Vienna's, about 10 to a lb. The rolls were poppy seeded Rosen bakery buns and the pickles, neon green relish, and celery salt were from Vienna Beef. There were also onions and tomatoes. The dog came on a bun with some small pieces of tomato on it. You added the mustard (Plochman's yellow), onions, relish, pickle, celery salt, and sports peppers yourself.

            I had mine with mustard, tomato, a pickle spear and some relish. It was a good authentic Chicago style hot dog.

            Last was Papaya King. An all beef dog from Sabrett, this one came with mustard, sauerkraut, and onion sauce. I got mine with just mustard. The frank itself was larger than what is served at the Papaya King restaurants. It was about 7 or 8 to a lb while the restaurant serves 10 to a lb. It's still the same recipe Sabrett frank, which I knew and which was confirmed to me by the guy from Papaya King that was working there. Only difference I noticed was that the casing was a little looser on these dogs than they are on the smaller ones. The dogs at the tasting were also prepared in a large frying pan rather than a griddle. They tasted the same though. A great dog and my favorite of the day.

            It was an enjoyable day and a great way to spend a rainy Sunday. Or a sunny Saturday for that matter. It was fun drinking beer, eating hot dogs, listening to Bruce Kraig's fine presentation, and meeting the nice people from Serious Eats. And talking about hot dogs.

            They might be doing it again next year. I hope so.


              • Total Posts: 74
              • Joined: 4/26/2001
              • Location: New York City,
              Re:New York City Hot Dog Event at Astor Center Mon, 05/4/09 10:01 AM (permalink)
              Thanks John for the great report!!!

              wish I could have gone. Serious Eats didn't seem to promote this that far in advance (and with a toddler and a baby, I  need as much notice as possible!) Looks like that didn't matter much, seems like there was a good turnout.

              If it's done again next year, I'll keep my eye out for it.

                • Total Posts: 2163
                • Joined: 8/1/2004
                • Location: New York, NY
                Bright Leaf Red Hots from Carolina Packers Mon, 05/4/09 7:51 PM (permalink)
                Bright Leaf (made by Carolina Packers of Smithfield, NC) Red Hots are a Beef/Pork dog:
                I used to have a neighbor who would bring Red Hots back with her in an ice chest when she visited her family in NC. She would invite me for some, along with her home-made cole slaw. They were spicy, not sweet, and I thought they were a good dog. I should have got the cole slaw recipe from her.
                I never found any of these sold in the NYC metro area. Is there any possibility the dogs served at the tasting suffered temperature abuse?
                  John Fox

                  • Total Posts: 2313
                  • Joined: 12/3/2000
                  • Location: Union, NJ
                  Re:Bright Leaf Red Hots from Carolina Packers Mon, 05/4/09 9:07 PM (permalink)
                  It's possible, but I doubt it. The other dogs were fine.

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                    • Joined: 8/1/2004
                    • Location: New York, NY
                    Re:Bright Leaf Red Hots from Carolina Packers Tue, 05/5/09 6:21 PM (permalink)
                    I last had Bright Leaf Red Hots in 1995 or so. The spice came from one of the ground varieties of chili peppers, or possibly they used liquid hot sauce. The program for this tasting stated "Carolina Red Hots", per mrphil. That is what my friend bought. The company also seems to make red dye-colored franks, so I guess they could be called "Carolina Red Hot Dogs." If that is what you were served, it just about rules about the possibility of a bad batch.
                    This on-line ad from a NC independent grocery chain will only be up until May 10th or so, but it shows a pound of Bright Leaf Red Hots on sale for $2.59:
                    It is near the middle of the page. I wonder what their Frosty Morn mystery meat franks, at 99 cents for 12 ounces, are like.
                    <message edited by David_NYC on Tue, 05/5/09 6:25 PM>

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                      • Location: New York, NY
                      Carolina Packers or Carolina Pride? Thu, 05/7/09 7:49 AM (permalink)
                      Carolina Packers or Carolina Pride?
                      My little grey cells were working while I was sleeping last night. From time to time, I would find Carolina P-something products in ghetto supermarkets in this area. Remember, mrphil's post only said Carolina red hots. Whose Carolina red hots? A search led to this post from 2006 on another forum. Note the listing for Carolina Pride Red Hot Dogs (12 oz): $0.88:
                      That led me to this Flash-laden site:
                      The company says they make over 300 products, so I don't think everything they make is listed on the web site.
                      Carolina Packers and Carolina Pride. Almost sounds like a trademark dispute case.
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