Sunday, December 31, 2006

Logan Hot Dog Joint Review - Morrison's Drive Inn

When the Associated Press distributed a story about this blog in November I began to get emails from every corner of the state. One of the most oft mentioned hot dog joints was located in Logan. Morrison's Drive Inn, I was repeatedly and confidently told, has the best hot dogs in West Virginia. These recommendations carried extra authority because people from all over the state sent them. I had folks from Parkersburg, Morgantown, Beckley and Charleston say that Morrison's was the place to go for the definitive West Virginia Hot Dog. I had eaten there before, years ago, but I knew I had to go and find out if this was The One True Dog as so many people claimed. It took me a few weeks to carve out the time, but I headed down Corridor G as soon as I had a free day.

After a little misadventure and re-familiarizing myself with Logan, I found my way to Morrison's. It's located right on Route 10 just south of Logan in Stollings. It's one of those places that people tell you "you can't miss it" and you can't. It sits virtually IN the road (the restaurant has been there for 50 years and you get the feeling the road was an afterthought) and the curb service area wraps completely around the building. They have an inside seating area but the cigarette smoke that billowed out the door as I pulled up discouraged me from eating inside. No worries, though, because the curb service is fast and friendly.

"Everything" on a hot dog, I was told, means chili, slaw, mustard and onions. Since I planned on visiting at least one other HDJ I decided to get a single hot dog and a Pepsi, and my wife ordered the same thing. I could tell by the "That's all?" look on the carhop's face that not many people got one hot dog and a drink. We stuck by our order, though, and within three minutes it was hanging on the edge of my window.

The first remarkable thing about a Morrison's hot dog is that it comes wrapped in clear cellophane. This is the first time I have encountered such a presentation. The clear covering holds in the steam effectively and even though my dog was quickly delivered it was already very soft and gooey. If you got this order to go and had very far to go, a fork would be a necessity.

When I unwrapped the hot dog I got some chili on my finger and instinctively licked it off. That was the moment I knew that this was going to be an awesome WVHD. The chili is a little bit spicy, sweet, complex and meaty. It smelled and tasted heavenly. Before I took the first bite of the hot dog I was regretting ordering only one.

The slaw was good, bordering on great. It was finely chopped but just a bit dry. It was only slightly sweet but it really worked with the chili. The onions were in there, I could tell, but they must've been finely chopped because I couldn't see them. The mustard was perfect and perfectly applied. Just an absolute taste treat, through and through.

I'm not ready to say this is the best hot dog in the state, but I am willing to call it the quintessential West Virginia Hot Dog. This is the one I want to feed to people from slawless places like Marion County and most every state in the union. I want to have them take a bite of this hot dog and then see if they still say it's crazy to eat slaw on a hot dog. I think we could make believers of a lot of people with this one.

Definitely a five-weenie treat. Thank you, everyone, who took the time to write in with a Morrison's recommendation.


Unknown said...

Grew up in Logan. Morrison's is my standard bearer. I have tasted other five weenie dogs, but none better.

Fred Meade
Montreal, Atlanta, Tampa

Unknown said...

From Logan. Morrison's is the standard bearer. Have other 5 stardogs, but none better.

Dave Ellis said...

Just the mention of Morrison's make my mouth water!