Friday, April 21, 2006

Charleston Area Hot Dog Joints - Gold Dome Bar & Grill

The Gold Dome Restaurant sat at the northern end of the old Kanawha City bridge until the interstate construction buried it under in the early 1970's. Its hot dogs were legendary for their quality and affordability. At one time, I'm told, you could by 10 hot dogs for a dollar at the Gold Dome.

After the restaurant was closed the signs were moved to the side of a building on 57th Street near the Kanawha Mall. I am not sure if there is any real connection to the old Gold Dome, but I am sure they have very, very good hot dogs.

The place is now a bar and grill and despite the smoke that comes with that designation it seems to be a pretty nice place. I was there on a Friday afternoon and a half-dozen or so folks were there that seemed like regulars. A couple of nice pool tables and several tv's give it the ambiance of a modern sports bar. The service was prompt and friendly.

The first thing to say about the dogs is SWEET! Not just in the modern vernacular exclamatory (although it fits) but in the literal adjective sense. The slaw is sweet like you would expect on a WVHD, but the chili is sweet also. It tastes every bit as sweet as southern style pulled-pork barbecue, but better. It's sweetness is in addition to, not instead of, some nice spiciness that left its mark on my palate for quite sometime. Think of Chris' with molasses. The slaw was a little dry but it's perfectly sweet and served in a perfectly appropriate-sized helping. The weenie had a great flavor and seemed to be larger than average. The bun, since the dog was properly wrapped in wax paper, was delightfully soft and delicious.

I also must report that I saw an order of onion rings come out while I waited and they looked fantastic. I wish I had tried some for myself. I will the next time - and there will be a next time because these dogs definitely have taken over a spot in my top five.


Em said...

I found your blog totally by accident, but I must say that I wish I had thought to create it! I'm also a Charlestonian who LOVES real WVHDs and I like to think I've found the best ones all over the state on my travels. I have some suggestions for you to review: Eleanor Dairy Queen, T&L Hot Dogs (now located only in North Central WV), Hinton Dairy Queen and, if you ever get the chance, Pipestem Drive-In Theatre. Those are my top four, with Chris' rounding out the top five. Thanks for sharing your WVHD reviews with other HD lovers!

Stanton said...

Hi Em, glad you found me! I'd like to discuss your list. Your blogger username dead ends without an email or active blog. If you check back here email me at