Saturday, March 15, 2008

Clifton Wiener Wars

I have been really, really swamped lately and haven't been a very good house hubbie. I am falling behind on the laundry and my cooking has been pretty basic, so I haven't had any great recipes or reports of meals to blog about.

However this past week I traveled up the Garden State Parkway to drop some music off to my son studying music at Montclair State University. I had a couple of hours before Rob got out of class and could meet up with him so I took a journey back to my hometown of Clifton, NJ to lunch on a Hot Grill Texas Weiner.

Clifton is a center of one of the great wiener wars of all time. It rages between The Hot Grill and their Texas Wieners and Rutt's Hut and their deep fried "rippers" and their secret relish.

Rutt's Hut dogs are unique in that when they are deep fried, they split open, thus the name "rippers". The natural casing of the hot dog crisps up and crunches when you bite into it. The main ingredients in their relish secret recipe is sweet pickle relish and mustard, and it has a vibrant yellow color. Sometimes a Rutt's Hut dog is just the thing.

However, most of the time, I am a Hot Grill guy. Hot Grill dogs are fried (not deep fried) so their skin "pops" like when you bite into it. The most popular way to order a Hot Grill dog is "all the way". This is a dog on a soft warm bun, with mustard, raw onions and the Hot Grill signature Texas Weiner sauce, which is a spicy red chili sauce.

I don't think the Clifton Wiener war will ever be won, at least I hope not, because I want to bring my great grand kids to these institutions 30 years from now. If you want to take sides in the battle, take a detour on your way to or from NYC someday. The Hot Grill is just off Route 46 and Rutt's Hut in on Route 21 just off S3.

1 comment:

hotdogman said...

I have eaten at Rutt's-an iconic Hot Dog Joint if there ever was one-and I just don't care for the fried dog. A little joint up my way called Lawton's in Lowell, MA serves the rippers but I prefer my dogs the way I serve them: hot STEAMED in beer and onions and served on a piping hot butter grilled roll.