In the world of hot dogs, there is fierce competition and lots of supply. They can be found in eating competitions all the time. Dogs sneak them off plates. They’re at every picnic, family grillout and youth baseball game. But when it comes to good hotdogs, there are very few that can compete with my favorite hotdog shop in town. Hot Diggity Dogs on Ewing Avenue is, undoubtedly, the best in town.
Our little intrepid food band here at Sports & Entertainment Nashville do our darndest to make it out of the office at least once a month to have what we’ve termed “Fun Friday Lunch.” It all started when we wanted to introduce our newest member of the gang to Nashville’s food scene, both new and classic. Cillea, a proud native of Massachusetts, had not had the privilege of growing up here in Nashville, sampling our fine food any time her little heart desired. So we set out to educate Miss Cillea on the fine eateries Nashville boasts of, and a true food-ucation would not be complete without a stop (or two or three or 12) at Hot Diggity Dogs.
With products brought in straight from Chicago, Hot Diggity Dogs’ dogs are a sight to behold. You can get ‘em steamed or grilled. You can even get a Chicago beef sandwich, complete with the fiery giardiniera. Mmm. Mmm. Mmm! For those of you unfamiliar with the feisty pickled veggies, it’s a wonderful complement to the meaty sandwich. Don’t worry, it’s not weird to have pickled cauliflower or carrots on a sandwich. It’s authentic! And good, to boot.
But back to hot dogs. They have the classic chili dog, but for a twist, try the Caro-Bama. It’s a chili dog with slaw on top, and it’s phenomenal. It’s a tough choice, but if pressed, I’d have to say the Caro-Bama is my favorite. We have it on good authority that a number of Southern states like to lay claim to the recipe that makes up the Caro-Bama, but it’d be a mouthful to call it “Caro-Bama-West Virginnessee,” so Caro-Bama is a good compromise!
Their fries are hot and come in a paper sack. What’s not to love about that? Oh, and a small but very important side note. We’ve noticed that lots of places around town have got fried pickles on the menu. It’s been a quiet revolution, but somehow, without many of us noticing, they’re everywhere! So, our little food gang has been sampling them whenever we stumble across them on a menu. In fact, we’ve been toying with the idea of setting up a fried pickle review, so if you want to join in or have ideas on what fried pickles are the best, give us a shout out! But you won’t have to sample many before you realize that Hot Diggity Dogs’ fried pickles are, no kidding, the best we’ve tried. Every single fried pickle we’ve had – and we’ve had a bucketful – has been a waffle-cut pickle circle. Not at Hot Diggity Dogs! They batter and fry up an entire dill pickle spear! And the ratio of hot juicy pickle with a thicker batter is really, really good. You really should try them!
We hope you travel out to Hot Diggity Dogs soon. You’ll be quite surprised if you haven’t been before, and you’ll be so happy you went if it’s been awhile. Oh! I almost forgot one of the best parts about Hot Diggity Dogs. Their Chicago dog. If you’ve not had a “true” Chicago dog from the Windy City, then you’ve really missed out. But the Chicago dog at Hot Diggity Dogs could just about convince you were on a Chicago street corner, eating one of their famous dogs. None of the others around town even come close, but Hot Diggity’s hits the nail on the head.
The poppyseed bun is fresh, the sport peppers are respectably angry, the pickle spear is nice and cold, the cucumbers are crunchy and the relish is appropriately turf-colored green! Created decades ago as an homage to all the many ethnicities that comprise the city of Chicago, each piece of the Chicago dog represents a culture that brings its own flavor to the city. So when you eat the Chicago dog in Nashville, I think the hot dog powers-that-be are smiling down at the cultural exchange.
Man, now I want a hot dog. Look out, Hot Diggity Dogs. I think I’m headed your way!