Crossing the Final Meat Frontier

Back in the day, the brave people who ate hot dogs in D.C. were only the tourists who purchased them from stands near the Mall, after a tiring day of erratically circling monuments and bumping into people. But these days are FINALLY over. While the rest of America is permanently starving/unemployed and chugs along on motorized scooters, no Washingtonian will ever have to eat these thin tubes of nitrates in such unfortunate conditions ever again: enter the gourmet hot dog restaurant.

Your Wonkabout went on a hot dog bender, sampling way too many varieties of hot dogs at both DC-3 and ChiDogO -- the two new hot-dog establishments in D.C. -- to report back that yes, hot dogs: They sure are delicious!

DC-3 (it’s named after the airplane) is a throwback to when flying wasn't such a cozy affair, and people used their monies to fly around the world to sample different hot dogs. Yes, 9/11 took away our deep-fried hot dogs stuffed with bacon and cheese, and now we have to settle for them in a Johnny Rockets-like restaurant in Barracks Row.

hot diggity

Haha, here’s the best part about DC-3: At the restaurant, you can actually utter the phrase, “I’ll take the hot dog with Cheese Whiz on top. And make it a fatty.” It’s only a matter of time before the FLOTUS and her army of underprivileged gardeners start forcing Washingtonians to participate in mandatory hula hoop and jump rope sessions. That is, if we want to keep pretending that when unhealthy food is eaten in D.C., it's somehow different and better than Real American Foodstuffs.

At DC-3 we recommend the Seoul Bulgogi & Kimchi hot dog (an Angus beef hot dog in a pretzel roll topped with Bulgogi and pickled Kimchi) for its spice, the Bay Bridge Pretzel Dog (an all beef hot dog topped with crab dip and Old Bay), even though they go a bit too heavy on the Old Bay, the California Left-Winger (a Veggie falafel dog topped with avocado and Tzatziki sauce), because it reminds your Wonkabout of home, and the Tuscon Sonoran, because a hot dog wrapped in bacon sounds especially gross/delicious.

On the other side of town, at ChiDogO, you can feast on a Chicago Dog (a Vienna Beef hot dog in a steamed poppy seed bun, topped with yellow mustard, green relish, chopped onions, a pickle spear, tomatoes, sport peppers and a dash of celery salt) for $3.19. You can also get a Chicago Dog at DC-3, but it's less expensive at ChiDogO, and maybe more authentic? Sure! ChiDogO does win points, though, for having Chicago beer on tap.

If hot dogs are the new hamburgers, which were the new cupcakes, which were the new salad bars, then, uh, who wants PBR? WE GIVE UP. Oscar Meyer wieners for everyone!


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