Other State Ratings and Reviews

Whevever we travel outside of Wisconsin we always keep our eyes open for places serving Chicago Dogs. Our families do not always appreciate our passion for Chicago Dogs...especially while on vacation. Although we do not travel out of state that often, when we do, it is usually difficult to find a Chicago Dog. We are constantly searching far and wide for that perfect Chicago Style Dog and sincerely hope that our reviews are both enjoyable and insightful. We hope you have the opportunity to visit some of our top ranked places and experience some of the best dogs around.

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The Wienery
414 Cedar Avenue S, Minneapolis, MN 55467 - 612-333-5798
DogCaching: W 93° 14.84' / N 44° 58.17'
Wienery Website
Date: 03-31-11

We first saw The Wienery mentioned on the Food Network's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives show. Our friend Matt was going on vacation to the Twin Cities, so he was tasked with checking it out. Here is his review:

By the looks of it, the place would fall into the "Dive" category. But, never one to judge a book by it's cover; the question remained, what would the dog be like?

Finding the place was a bit of an adventure, due to the unfamiliarity with the area, and a lot of road construction. But eventually it was found, and only a few blocks from the University of Minnesota campus. Upon entering, it came as no surprise that the main customers were college students. Some must have been regulars based on the friendly banter going on between them and Pat, the owner/cook.

A combo of a Chicago Dog, home cut fries and a drink were ordered ($5.50). Upon arrival, it was noticed that there was no celery salt. Apologies were given, and a healthy helping was applied. Everything ordered is made as you wait, including the steaming of the bun, which was just about the best we've had. The authentic Vienna dog, although not natural cased, still had a bit of a snap and was firm, juicy and delicious. The neon green relish was tasty, and all other ingredients were authentic. The only major negative was a sour tasting sport pepper which was discarded. Overall a very good dog.

The Wienery features 15 other styles of dogs. Still being hungry and curious, a drive-in dog was ordered. This had chili, cheese and creamy cole slaw on top of the Vienna dog and steamed poppy seed bun. It was also very good.

So, if you are a Chicago Dog fan and are in the Twin Cities, a stop at The Wienery should be on your itinerary. And if you are a resident, you probably should go several times to sample all the dogs.

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DOGS: 8.1

Overall: 4.5   

Recommended: Definitely

Chicago Dog Express
600 Cerrillos Rd, Santa Fe, NM 87505 - 606-984-2798
Date: 07-23-07

Whenever we're on the road, either for business or leisure, we're on the lookout for Chicago Dogs. While recently visiting Santa Fe, I (Kevin) was minding my own business when I saw some Vienna tables and a sign that read "Chicago Dog Express". After cutting my wife off in mid sentence, I pulled into the parking lot and didn't waste any time getting to the counter.

Chicago Dog Express was originally setup by a Chicago native; however, the stand was recently purchased by a local. The dog can be ordered either "1/2 loaded" or "fully loaded" and comes in two sizes: standard and jumbo.

I ordered up a standard size dog, "1/2 loaded" and hoped for the best. The dog arrived fairly quickly and all the ingredients were present. The dog was slightly bigger than the standard size dog you get at most places, but a tad smaller than the larger 1/4 pounders (jumbo variety). I was also a little puzzled when they handed me the dog, along with a spoon, but more on that later.

I opened up the nicely wrapped dog and noticed right off the bat that the veggies were piled high. In addition to a large, crisp, deli pickle (which was very good), the dog had a ton of fresh, cubed cucumbers and tomatoes. Mustard was correctly applied to the dog, not the bun, but the application was a little on the light side. The onions were chopped and the quantity was pretty sparse. The poppy seed bun did not appear to be steamed, and the structural integrity was getting pushed to the limit by the sheer mass of the cucumbers and tomatoes. The dog held together for the first couple of bites, but the bun quickly disintegrated after that. Four sport peppers topped the dog and they were on the hot side, but were easily mellowed by the shear mass of cucumbers and tomatoes. The celery salt was nicely applied, which was nice to see since so many people go astray on this crucial ingredient. Lastly, the dog itself had great flavor and was nice and juicy, once you got past all the extra toppings.

Overall, the dog was very good and I'd definitely order another, except I'd probably opt for the jumbo version to balance the ingredients better. My chief complaint was that the overall taste was on the "earthy" side, since there were so many tomatoes and cucumbers. I cringe when I think about what it would have been like if I had ordered a "fully loaded" dog. The phrase "dragged through the garden" definitely applied here, however, I just wish I didn't have to eat the entire garden!

Chicago Dog Express has a number of other items, such as Polish Sausage and Veggie Sandwiches. A standard size, "1/2 loaded" dog runs $4.18, while the "fully loaded" version runs $4.88. The jumbo versions run $5.81 and $6.50 for the respective "loaded versions".

DOGS: 7.2

Overall: 4   

Recommended: Yes

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