Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Red Hot. Tacoma, Washington.

Tacoma. It's a dank little hovel, home to shipping yards, serial killers and Craigslist hookers. It's also the place to get the best damn dogs I've had in the Pac NW. My buddy and guest correspondent Robert "The Schneids" Schneider agrees. The Red Hot in Tacoma is for real, and worthy of a repeat visit.

The Red Hot has been on my to do list for a while, and it has recently received national pub from a show that I've never heard of called Chefs Vs. City on the Food Network. I don't watch that shit. I do however like to eat a good hot dog.

The menu at The Red Hot is fairly simple. There are 9 signature dogs, 3 sausage options, a couple of veggie selects, and one sandwich called the Pac Ave Italian Beef. There's also a few sides.

The Red Hot does not mess around when it comes to the quality of their beers. They boast one of the most extensive lists of IPA's I've ever seen. Just take a peep at their current tap selections:

Beer Valley Rosebud IPA
Hales Aftermath IIPA
Lazy Boy IPA
Stone Double Bastard
Ommegang Adoration
Silver City Clear Creek Pale
Boulevard Brewing Bully Porter
Leavenworth Friesan Pilsner
Two Beers Jive Espresso Stout
New Belgium Trippel
Old Tacoma Lager
CASK: Double Mountain Hop Lava IPA
NITRO: Oskar Blues Gordons Beer

Enough with the tour guide shit. Let's get to the eats. Here we have my first selections:

On the left is the Hilltop Strangler. An all beef dog with a slice of bacon, thousand island, onions, mustard, nacho cheese, & tomatoes.

On the right is the Destiny City Slaw Dog. An All beef dog with southern style coleslaw, house special all-meat chili. Onions and mustard to top off this beauty.

The Schneids came to The Red Hot bragging that I might need to wheel him out of the place on a stretcher. He wasn't far off the mark. Here's his first two picks:

On top is The Coney. An all beef dog with yellow mustard, chopped onions, and Red Hot's all meat chili. A simple, traditional masterpiece.

The second dog is the behemoth known as The Tide Flats. Two all beef dogs on an open faced bun, piled high with yellow mustard, onions, relish, tomatoes, sport peppers, jalapeno peppers, sauerkraut, all meat chili, coleslaw, nacho cheese, pickle spear, and celery salt. This monster comes with a fork and a knife. I saw beads of sweat forming on The Schneids' brow while he was pummeling this fucker.

For my next trick, I went for the 6th Ave Strut. An all beef dog with cream cheese, onions and tomatoes. They were calling this a traditional "Seattle Dog" but I prefer the street vendor version with grilled onions. Still a tasty dog for sure.

Nobody puts the hurt on a Coney dog quite like Schneids.

That's me with the Hilltop Strangler. It's an aptly named beast considering the effect it had on my arteries.

The Red Hot only serves all-beef natural casing hot dogs, served on poppyseed buns. The have that snap to them that I really love, and the girth of each dog is easy to manage. 3 of these bad boys is one too many, and I likely peeled at least a week off of my lifespan. That said, The Red Hot dogs are delicious and definitely worth the drive.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Best Dog In The Country?

Some Louie from the Wall Street Journal dropped that heavy duty claim on Boston Speed's back in ought eight. Pretty lofty heights to live up to if you ask me. Hell I'm not sure I'd want that bestowed on my own dag joint. That's like comparing your band to the Stones. Nonetheless when I was up that direction a few weeks back I made the trip to check it out myself. Holly Eats gave Speed's it's highest marks, it seems to win Best of Boston pretty often and I love some proper dags so what the hell.

After walkin' all over Boston looking at history and graveyards we hopped a cab over to Speed's. We had no idea it was a cart way out in the the middle of Bumfuck Egypt's industrial park. Thankfully our cabbie was cool enough to hang out why we grabbed the dogs to go. Otherwise it would have been a long trot back to the hotel.

The missus at the Speed Wagon. They sell XXXXXXL (that's 6!) size shirts if that gives you and ideer what's going down at this wagon.

How they do it on a beater of a propane grill.

Viola! The Speed Dog "loaded" and the Smoked Boston Meat with some tasty Utz Classics and a Sam Adams chaser. Loaded means Speed's mustard, relish, bbq sauce, special chili sauce and onions. All listed as "Speed's" brand on a 1/2 lb smoked dog.

It wasn't bad but it's not the best dog I ever chowed on. The smoked beef sammy was badass though. That's where it's at when ordering up at Boston Speed's.

While we were there we hit a few more culinary delights. Mostly we ate the Jesus outta lobster rolls all over Boston and Maine. They are served on hot dog buns so that counts right?

This beaut was taken down at Neptune Oyster Bar in Boston.

We had another great lobster chow at some bar the day we got into town and we hit a joint that chubby goof from Man Vs. Food said was real good but the best was had at Red's Eats in Wiscasset Maine.

While shopping at Rabelais, a super rad book store that only carries food related books, we got turned on to a 2009 James Beard award winning restaurant called Hugo's in Portland Maine. We got a sweet sausage book full of goofy shit from 1967 at Rabelais and an awesome house cured charcuterie plate at Hugo's that is easily the best I've ever had

I may or may not ever go back to Boston Speed's but I'll be back to Maine for those Lobster rolls. Them shits were super good!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Hot Doggin' and Sausage stuffin' in So Dak.

A few longtime bros drove deep into South Dakota wilds to shoot birds and drink beer. Of course we found time to slay some world class sausages.

The bountiful harvest. This accounts for a bout 1/3rd of the natural casing sausages we devoured. That bottle of ketchup wasn't my idea, they put that shit on everything in South Dakota.

Al. Our hunting guide and longtime buddy of Jake, just getting weird with the meats. I've hung out with this dude a few times and he always seems to have food hanging from his face.

The Mayor making quick work of some pork barrel spending.

Jake "wingmaster" Lancaster. This trip was his idea. His best idea ever.

Thanks to Garrett and Al at the Medicine Breaks for an awesome weekend adventure. You can read more about the trip at Superbeast.