Six spots to get a killer hot dog in Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Six spots to get a killer hot dog in Pittsburgh

While everyone's debating whether or not a hot dog is a sandwich, we're over here actually enjoying them. We found six local spots to grab a delicious dog, ranging from no-frills hidden gems to ones covered in an obscene amount of toppings. Let us know which hot dog joint we should try next!

click to enlarge Nana's New York Hotdog Shop - CP PHOTO: LISA CUNNINGHAM
CP Photo: Lisa Cunningham
Nana's New York Hotdog Shop

Nana's New York Hotdog Shop

1110 Federal St., North Side.
There's a sign hanging in the back of Nana's proclaiming that you're not in a fast food restaurant. But waiting for your order is perhaps the best part of this tiny mom & pop joint on the North Side. There aren't just pork and beef dogs on the menu, but burgers and an assortment of breakfast options, and while the multiple cooks behind the counter are filling the orders, expect to overhear neighborhood gossip and upbeat camaraderie. The hot dogs, while basic, are also tasty and slit down the middle, perfect for holding the large number of toppings available. Just get there early; the shop is only open on weekdays, from 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.  Lisa Cunningham

click to enlarge Wiener World - CP PHOTO: LUCY CHEN
CP Photo: Lucy Chen
Wiener World

Wiener World

626 Smithfield St., Downtown.
Besides the old diner ambiance and the impeccable speed of service, Wiener World serves “the best dogs in the city.” Or so says the customer who ordered in front of me. Their classic all-beef hot dogs are juicy and even slightly sweet and can be loaded with a number of toppings they have on hand. However, you can also do it up a bit and order their “dog of the day,” which, on the day I visited, was a beef hot dog on a pretzel bun with melted cheddar, bacon, and sauteed onions. Wiener World is a favorite among the working Downtown crowd and, despite its name, also offers a wide selection of sandwiches, salads, and ice cream. Lucy Chen

click to enlarge Frankie Bunz - CP PHOTO: HANNAH KINNEY-KOBRE
CP Photo: Hannah Kinney-Kobre
Frankie Bunz

Frankie Bunz

2108 Murray Ave., Squirrel Hill.
Looking to get experimental with your hot dog order? There's no better place to test out toppings than Frankie Bunz. Their list includes sriracha mayo, avocado, and candied bacon. You can make your own, including substituting in a veggie dog, but their specialty items are where they truly get inventive. For example, their Pittsdogger hot dog is topped appropriately enough with fries and coleslaw, and they even serve up a Thai dog with spicy peanut sauce and cabbage slaw. I ordered the Eliot Ness — AKA a Chicago dog — which came with the appropriate overload of toppings. The salty snap of the hot dog complimented the sweet and sour zing of relish, pickles, mustard, and celery salt. Bonus: try their egg rolls, which are made using the same recipe as the late Charlie Ung's Tea Garden.  — Hannah Kinney-Kobre

click to enlarge CP PHOTO: LUCY CHEN
CP Photo: Lucy Chen

El Burro

1108 Pittsburgh St., North Side and 1113 S. Braddock Ave., Regent Square.
You wouldn’t expect a Mexican restaurant to serve hot dogs, but El Burro surprises you with their Tijuana Street Dog. The hot dog is wrapped in bacon and topped with queso, pico de gallo, jalapeño, and avocado salsa. The avocado salsa and jalapeño both provide the perfect and unexpected amount of spiciness and sweetness, while the pico de gallo and queso put the cherry on top when it comes to its presentation. — Ladimir Garcia

click to enlarge Frankie's Extra Long chili cheese dog - CP PHOTO: JORDANA ROSENFELD
CP Photo: Jordana Rosenfeld
Frankie's Extra Long chili cheese dog

Frankie's Extra Long

3535 Butler Ave., Lawrenceville. 412-687-5220
This no-frills, cash-only Pittsburgh institution is older than my grandparents. It advertises four sandwiches on its handwritten menu, which is taped to a plastic barrier over the register: kielbasa, hot sausage, meatball, and a footlong hotdog. Once lauded by former CP managing editor Alex Gordon as "the antidote to Pittsburgh's highfalutin' food-scene," Frankie's Extra Long is a reliably fast, cheap, and tasty pick. The serving of chili and cheese on my dog was light, making it a good option for someone who wants the flavor of a chili cheese dog without risking the shirt stains.  Jordana Rosenfeld

click to enlarge Back to the Foodture's "Snoop Dogg" - CP PHOTO: DONTAE WASHINGTON
CP Photo: Dontae Washington
Back to the Foodture's "Snoop Dogg"

Back to the Foodture

2767 E. Carson St., South Side. Facebook search "Back to the Foodture"
While the scenery will bring you back to the past, Back to the Foodture is the “Foodture” of the restaurant industry. Coming to the South Side just two years ago, Back to the Foodture is quietly becoming one of Pittsburgh’s best hot dog places. If you think that you are leaving with just a hot dog, then you thought wrong. With 14 different flavors, it is doubtful that customers have had these kinds of hot dogs before. One of their most popular hotdogs is the delicious “Snoop Dogg,” which comes wrapped in bacon before it's grilled, and then topped with melted cheese and a "24k sauce." In addition to their hot dogs, they also have over 100 flavored wings, burgers, and over 30 different kinds of french fries. — Dontae Washington

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