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Coney Island Lunch’s Texas Weiners

August 5, 2009
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My apologies to all for having such a hot dog-less July.  The reaction from my friends has been just shy of accusing me of hot dog heresy for not having celebrated the 4th of July properly, but I must remind you that is Samantha’s & I’s anniversary.  I think Sam deserves a little bit better than a hot dog to celebrate–that, and we were hiking hut to hut in the White Mountains of New Hampshire on the 4th, so there weren’t many hot dog stands we could hit up.

In order to make up for my lack of attention to the wonder of encased meats, I dedicated myself to finding a couple of great hot dog stands to visit while traveling on our most recent vacation, a backpacking trip in the Smoky Mountains.  Many thanks to my friend AP for giving me my first destination when she shared this blog post from Serious Eats, all about a type of hot dog I had never heard of before:  The Texas Weiner.

If you’ve never heard of it before, to condense Serious Eats’ post, the Texas Weiner is a version of the coney dog originating from Greek-owned restaurants.  Where coney dogs have a steamed (or grilled) dog and meat chili, the texas weiner has either a fried or split & grilled hot dog with a Greek-spiced version of chili.

The Texas Weiner is a regional hot dog, centralized in Philadelphia, and I was lucky enough to be driving through an area that had an old and revered institution that’s been serving up the Texas Weiner since 1923:  Coney Island Lunch, located in Scranton PA.

The diner is a pretty unassuming place with what looks to be the kind of storefront reserved for pet stores, with it’s big glass windows and sawdust-lined flooring.  Once you get inside it’s a diner that’s obviously been decorated by a man with a passion for baseball–specifically, for the New York Yankees and the St. Louis Cardinals.  Knowing that Pete, the owner, had this predilection for America’s favorite pasttime, I came decked out in my Cubbies hat and ready to talk baseball.

Sam started off with another regional favorite, french fries smothered in gravy.  Seems like a healthy enough appetizer before entering hot dog nirvana.  Behind her you can see all the baseball paraphanelia–the place was just covered in it, which was fantastic.

When the dogs came, they looked more like sloppy joes than hot dogs, since they’re served on a deli bun and the sauce is dripping out of the edges–I couldn’t even see the hot dog until I opened the hood.

Sloppy joes, n’est pas?

Not to worry, the dog’s just hiding under all that sauce.

After eating two Texas Weiners, Sam gave me a choice: I could have one more dog or a piece of pie.  Of course I went with the extra dog.

Sam gave the thumbs up to her Texas Weiner!

On the way out of town we were riding behind this van, which was for a very oddly named donut store.  Wish we would have had time to look into whether or not they actually use curry in their donuts.

The next stop will be a stand we stumbled upon while coming back from the Smokies, Skeeter-Dogs in Wytheville, Virginia, home of the world-famous Skeeter-Dog and my first real slaw dog.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. Banksy permalink
    August 12, 2009 12:00 pm

    I love this place… while I have little reason to go back to Scranton, PA anymore, when I did we went to Coney Island quite often. Next time you go through PA, you need to try Yocco’s!

  2. April 10, 2010 3:01 am

    do you you remember peter,s lunch with respect,lackawanna ave thanks steve have a great day esap@netscape.com please e mail back

  3. Big Rick permalink
    January 1, 2011 6:57 pm

    Do all the Coney’s & Restaurants in New Hampshire,
    put chili with beans on a hotdog & call it a chili-dog? Are
    they all about 10 bricks shy of a dozen, in this state? I don’t get
    it, are there any REAL Coney Island’s In N.H.? If so tell me where!
    Thank You – Big Rick.

    • January 4, 2011 9:30 am

      Hey Big Rick, hate to say it but I can’t think of a place in New Hampshire that does serve a traditional coney–I’d guess that due largely to the coney being a regional variation of the hot dog. Seems like the coneys go as far north as Rhode Island, far west as Indiana/Michigan, and as far south as Virginia. For a great hot dog stand in NH, I’d suggest the Dog House on Route 101 in Wilton–the proprietor keeps strict hours (I’ve been there 5 minutes before she closes & have been turned away, to my dismay) but it’s largely because she’s in her 80’s and doesn’t have the inclination to stay open for a few customers dribbling in. It’s best enjoyed after an early-morning hike up Mt. Monadnock. Enjoy, and thanks for reading the blog!

  4. nick aalerud permalink
    April 7, 2013 10:23 am

    Thought youd like this

    • April 7, 2013 10:40 am

      I might, but only if you tell me what “this” is!

Trackbacks

  1. Laziness Brings Many Hot Dogs at Once « The Hot Dog I Ate
  2. Midwest Weenies « The Hot Dog I Ate

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