Hot Dog Smackdown: Our Search For The City’s Best Gourmet Wiener

Hot Dog Smackdown: Our Search For The City’s Best Gourmet Wiener

Hot Dog Smackdown: Our Search For The City’s Best Gourmet Wiener


Every sausage at this St. Lawrence lunch counter is house-ground, hand-stuffed and packed with a little pork jowl for extra juiciness. The BLT dog amps up the pork factor to deliver the biggest flavours. The Berkshire belly sausage has a sweet, crackling skin and creamy interior, and the marbled bacon strips are apple-wood smoked. And yes, the mayo is made from scratch. $9.50. 95 King St. E., 647-748-2033


There’s nothing traditional about this King West beer hall’s bison sausage on a bun. Studded with whole blueberries and laced with maple syrup, it combines the sweetness of a breakfast sausage with the umami punch of game meat. The buttery grilled roll trumps your standard steamer bun. $9. 609 King St. W., 416-703-7775


At Fancy’s, the beef-shoulder franks are hand-twisted, wrapped in lamb casings and cooked on a flat-top stove. From there, the flavours get a bit more mod: kimchi and short ribs; mashed potatoes and gravy; and our pick, a deep-fried Buffalo dog coated in crisp panko crumbs. It comes topped with blue cheese dressing, crunchy crudités and a salty sprinkle of deep-fried chicken skin. $7.25. 326 College St., 416-920-3247


This Danforth diner names its dogs after North American cities like Chicago, Philly and Montreal. Our favourite, the Texan, deserves a whole state. The Angus beef frank is wrapped in bacon, slathered in tangy barbecue sauce and topped with sweet sautéed onions that have just the right amount of crunch. $6.99. 467 Danforth Ave., 416-792-1467


The Ultimate Hot Dog at Uncle Betty’s is no joke: the quarter-pound kosher beef frank comes loaded with creamy mac ’n cheese, garlicky aioli and a choice of crumbled meatloaf or pulled pork shoulder. We recommend the latter, which is slow-cooked for 14 hours and doused in a sweet, peppery barbecue sauce that cuts through all the fat. $15. 2590 Yonge St., 416-483-2590