Saturday, March 11, 2006

Charleston Area Hot Dog Joints - Sam's Hot Dog Stand

I'm not sure a real WV Hot Dog Joint should be allowed to have a website, but we'll await a ruling from the judges. In the meantime we'll look at the Sam's Hot Dog Stand's site and learn a little about the origin of this little regional chain:

"Frank Lucente grew up in a small town in West Virginia. Frank often enjoyed spicy chili dogs at the town hot dog stand. Frank would always stop for hot dogs on visits home. Years later the town stand closed and Frank was forced to look elsewhere to satisfy his craving. He went to see the owner of the stand to try to convince him to pass on the recipe. But the owner refused, saying he would "take it to the grave." Denied, Frank soon discovered that the recipe for the chili sauce belonged to an elderly woman still living in his hometown. For years she had been cooking up the sauce and selling it at her church bazaar. Accordning to her the stand had changed the recipe over the years but the woman gladly provided the original recipe. Frank however recruited his business partner and good friend Rocc Muriale to help invent an even better chili sauce recipe. The chef at the popular Rocco's Restaurante, Rocco spent several months cooking up batches of chili sauce. After six months he had the perfect recipe! In 1983, wanting to share this delicious invention with the public, Rocco and Frank opened the first Sam's Hot Dog Stand in Huntington West Virginia....ending the search for the perfect hot dog!"
OK, the first question is "who the heck is Sam?"

Second question: What happens to those perfect hot dogs by the time they travel 50 miles east to Charleston? Because the ones around here are far from perfect.

To be fair, I have noticed a difference between the two locations I have tried. The one on Hale Street downtown is terrible. The one on McCorkle Avenue in South Charleston is a cut above Hale Street, but still not a great quality WVHD. It stands to reason that the ones in Huntington might be truly excellent.

"Everything" means chili, slaw, mustard and onion. Choose spicy chili, even if you are a spice-wimp like me, because the regular is bland. One cool twist is a "healthy hot dog" which includes a "low-fat" weenie. It tastes just fine, and in light of my nutritional research, it might be smart choice. The Hale Street location's weenies always seem to be water-logged.

The slaw is OK and the rest of the dog is edible, but I wouldn't put Sam's in my top fifteen favorites.

What can you expect from a Hot Dog Stand with its own website?

1 comment:

Stanton said...

Okay, so much for allowing comments with no word verification! Try to be nice and what does it get ya?