Hot Dogs


HD1 is housed in a cute building on Highland Avenue, about one block south of the Highland-Ponce De Leon intersection. The menu is mostly on the wall, on a blackboard as you enter. Though it’s a bar, there is no draft beer. That said, HD1 has plenty of craft and industrial beer options. The food? Let’s take a look.

The homemade pickles were good.

Waffle fries poutine was a big hit with my daughter.

Nothing special about the spicy dog.

The "Chicago style" dog was a better option.

If you think of the restaurant as a long rectangle, with one side having a long window facing the road, then there is a bar on the opposite side. There is a long shared table in the middle, and small tables circling the bar and big table, mostly towards the window side of the building. Any complaints I’ve had in the past about Flip’s lousy seating are also true here, but if you arrive early enough, it works. Then, the people press isn’t bad enough to intrude with this light hearted cuisine, and on our trip, table mates were both polite and engaging.

I was having trouble finding dogs and food with just the right stuff. The Haute Dog looked like a winner, but ended up ordinary. And maybe an ordinary dog is okay at a Super Target, but not here. The Chicago style dog just was a better food option. The pickles were good, and were fresher and crisper than supermarket pickles. The winner of all the items was the waffle fries poutine.

Creative, light hearted, not hard on the pocketbook. This place is close enough to Little Five Points to merit a stop or two when you visit.

HD1
664 Highland Avenue
Atlanta, GA 30306
(404) 815-1127

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Inventive, clever, and fun, America’s Top Dog is the kind of dog joint that makes choice a matter of want, rather than wish for. Easier to get to from the east than the west, it sits in a strip mall near the corner of Chamblee-Tucker and 285, close to a Big Lots.

There are a fistful of designer dogs, a few basic dogs (depending on choice of meat) and perhaps 34 separate toppings you can add to your dog. Choice reigns supreme here.

I had a Georgia Dog this day, and added some pepper paste to the mix. Jeff, who served me the dog, was low key, helpful, and a pleasure to do business with. They’re opening a new Top Dog in a few months up in Duluth, on Satellite just south of Duluth Highway, Ga 120. I suspect,  if I were a betting man, that Chloe would end up their first Duluth customer.

I came with 15 minutes to spare. And I felt I was served as well as if it had been 2pm in the afternoon. Nice place. Rating? Go. Just go. You’ll have a good time.

America’s Top Dog
3352 Chamblee-Tucker Rd
Atlanta, GA 30341

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A Five Guys has opened in Dunwoody, in the mall area surrounding the Super Target. It’s to the left of the main boulevard entrance into the area, near the bank, closer to Perimeter Center Parkway than Carrabas or Cheeseburger in Paradise. It’s a bit of an oasis in this portion of the mall.

I went there recently, for my mid afternoon snack. I’ve been to a Five Guys before, and their burgers are large balls of meat and bread, hardly a snack. Once I arrived and was in line, though, I noticed they sold dogs. Pretty cheap dogs too. So I waited for the teens with the gold Visa card to finish their order and then ordered mine (Gold Visa? Do they mint teenagers at the bank these days?).

It arrived quickly. Good dog, but not one to make me forget Chicago Mike’s. One big difference is the bread, which when loaded with all the extras, went half soggy. The meat, cheese, and extras were quite good – grilled onions and grilled mushrooms pack a lot of flavor. Mike’s dog is just better: better bread, and a more savory, flavorful hot dog.

Five Guys Burger and Fries
123 Perimeter Center West
Dunwoody, GA 30346
(678) 579-0090

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Happiness is knowing that even on my diet, I can still enjoy the delicious hot dogs at Mike’s Chicago Hot Dogs. Yum!

2 starch, 1 meat, 1 fat exchange.

Evidently, Mike’s is also a Wifi hotpot. You can surf and eat at the same time.

Mike’s Hot Dogs (sometimes referred to as Mike’s Chicago Dog Haus) is a small hot dog eatery found almost exactly at the corner of the Whole Foods shopping center on Hammond and Roswell Road, a minute’s walk from Canton Cooks and Hearth Pizza Tavern. You can’t see it from Roswell Road, so if you see the Whole Foods, just turn. Once you’re near it, it can be partly obscured by trees, so just keep heading towards the corner of the ‘L’, you’ll get there.

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Inside, there are booths, and lots of posters and Chicago memorabilia on the walls, and a small counter where you can order food. A regular Chicago dog runs about 2.49, so I ended up ordering a Polish combo and a dog to go for a friend.

Now, I have very little Chicago experience in dogs. I’ve been to the Windy City, but mostly to see the sights, get into Chicago’s excellent museums, take a gander from the Sears Tower, and eat pizza. I don’t have any preconceived notions of what a Chicago dog is supposed to be, and any “Yankee Dog” experiences I’ve had have come from the street carts of Philadelphia.

Soon after ordering, though, one Polish dog was delivered to my table.

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delicious!

Nice.  Carmelized onions, mustard, a spear of pickle, and peppers along with a decent looking tube of meat. Mike’s web site emphasizes their use of Vienna Beef sausage and Gonella bread in their dogs. They order most of their ingredients from Chicago, in order to get the taste and feel down right. In the blogging community, Manda Panda has a review of Mike’s Dogs. There is also a fine review by Wayne Wolf.

My impression? Well, I’m a sucker for peppers on meat. When I’d order cheese steaks in Philadelphia, I’d always get the fiery hot cherry peppers with my steaks when I could. This was a delicious dog, hot and tasty. The onions added a nice dose of flavor and the Polish dog brought back memories of freezing in front of a silver cart on a cloudy March day. Thankfully in Mike’s, freezing isn’t required.

Verdict: A bit of Chicago in Atlanta. Tasty, inexpensive dogs. Highly Recommended.

Mike’s Hot Dogs
5948 Roswell Road
Atlanta, GA 30328
(404) 252-8484

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