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The Best Five Hot Dogs in the World, IMG Cred: Tom Johansmeyer

The Picture Says it All!


There’s more to life than fine cuisine, and even the most “authentic” of travelers sometimes find themselves craving comfort food from home. When the mood strikes, there’s nothing quite like a hot dog. It may not be much, but you know exactly what you’re getting. Well, actually, you don’t (and that’s probably just fine with you). Nonetheless, hot dogs are cheap, tasty and available everywhere. I’ve munched on these delights from just south of the DMZ in South Korea to a kiosk in Stockholm, and every part of the world, it seems, is able to add a little twist to the most basic junk food on the planet.


Let’s take a look at five of my favorites, in order:


Popo’s (Boston, MA): located just off the beach in Swampscott, Massachusetts, Popo’s is easy to find in the summer – just look for the long line. This local institution, which attracts guests from south of Boston and well into New Hampshire, has perfected the hot dog. There are many toppings available, from chili to cheese and well beyond, but I suggest going with no more than ketchup and mustard. These dogs are too perfect to adorn. And, Popo’s has mastered toasting and buttering the buns, delivering an even more sinful experience.


Banger Bros (London, England): forgive the off-color name, and focus on the hot dog. This local chain, which was rumored to be coming the United States when I ate their almost a year ago, offers big, plump hot dogs that may seem a bit more like a sausage but are thoroughly enjoyable. When you’ve had your fill of fish and chips, this is the only dog to eat in London. Make sure you grab one when wandering around Portobello market over in Notting Hill.


Baejarins Beztu (Reykjavik, Iceland): if it’s good enough for a former president, it’s good enough for me. I could never pronounce the name (and I’m sure Bill Clinton, who has eaten there, couldn’t without a little help, too), but the experience is divine. The hot dog itself is boiled, which isn’t exactly exciting, but the mustard is astounding – by far the best I’ve had on a hot dog. The mustard on hot dogs in Stockholm is similar, but they just don’t deliver the unique flavor.


Japadog (Vancouver, British Columbia):
There are two Japadog stands in on Burrard Street in Vancouver (outdoor eating only!), each with a different menu. So, it makes perfect sense to try both. What you need to know is that these are Kobe beef hot dogs, made from the laziest – and tastiest – animals on Earth. While these dogs lack snap, they definitely make up for it in flavor, likely the best in the world.


Crif Dogs (New York, NY): have you ever had a hot dog wrapped in bacon and topped with cheddar cheese and a fried egg? Well, this is your chance! This is by far the best hot dog establishment in New York City, and the menu will make your arteries harden just by reading it. Order anything – you’ll love it. And, if you have an evening open, go into the payphone and make a “call” to the speakeasy next store!

 

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Photo: Tom Johansmeyer

 

Tom Johansmeyer is a frequent business traveler and group marketing director for IR magazine and Corporate Secretary. His latest project is Inside IPO. Tom is a recovering travel blogger, having previously written for Gadling and Luxist.

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