Daily Dish

The inside scoop on food in Los Angeles

Category: Hot Dogs & Corndogs

Food FYI: Hot dogs, hot dogs and more hot dogs!

If it's the Fourth of July, that means it must be time for the Nathan's Famous famous hot dog eating contest

If it's the Fourth of July, that means it must be time for the Nathan's Famous famous hot dog eating contest. At least, that's been true since 1916. Read the whole history at Smithsonian magazine's Food & Think blog.


And of course, you're not going to be satisfied just reading a history of the event, no matter how charmingly told. So the good folks at ESPN have set it up so you can watch the 2012 Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest as it unfolds, via live feed, starting at 9 a.m. PDT. The thrills; the spills; the mustard!


It might not seem like the most obvious of product alliances, but Bon Appetit magazine is teaming up with Banana Republic for a line of clothing. Who knows? Maybe they'll come up with a fabric that resists mustard stains? Read about it here.


A perfect knife

Fourth of July recipes

Marcus Samuelsson's "Yes, Chef"

-- Russ Parsons and Jenn Harris

Photo: Hot dogs being weighed in preparation for the Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest. Credit: Stan Honda / Getty Images

Super Bowl: Basement Tavern, City Tavern, Rush Street & more


Basement Tavern: Sports fans can enjoy happy hour specials all night long at the Basement Tavern at the Victorian on Super Bowl Sunday. There will be $3 beers, $5 well drinks, $5 house red and white wines by the glass, and 50% off all bottles of wine and champagne. Hot dogs, hamburgers and other dishes will be complimentary with a two-drink minimum. Feeling indulgent? The tavern is also offering a Bottle and Bacon package: For $1,000, guests will receive a bottle of whiskey and bourbon and bacon-wrapped hot dogs for 10-20 friends. 2640 Main St., Santa Monica, (310) 392-4956.

City Tavern: This "new American tavern" is offering all-day happy hour in honor of the Super Bowl.  Spectators can sip on $10 craft beer growlers while munching on Super Bowl meatballs and pigs in a blanket made with Spanish chorizo. If you are going with a group, reserve your own table tap booth where you can pour your own beer throughout the game. 9739 Culver Blvd., Culver City, (310) 838-9739, www.citytavernculvercity.com.

Pink Taco: The Century City taco joint has 11 LED TVs and one jumbo projection screen for your Super Bowl viewing pleasure. The restaurant is serving crispy carnita tacos with salsa fresca and chipotle mayo, adobado chicken mini tortas, mini churros and more, all for less than $6 (or pick four for $22). 10250 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, (310) 789-1000, www.pinktaco.com.

Rock & Reilly's: Located on the Sunset Strip, this pub boasts more than 45 Irish whiskeys and 14 antique framed flat-screen TVs as well as a 120-inch projection screen. It will be serving Super Bowl favorites with an Irish twist including whiskey bingo wings, Irish nachos (made with potatoes, peppered bacon and Irish cheddar), wee burgers and corned beef sliders. If you are not a beer drinker, the bar will have its signature Irish whiskey flights available. 8911 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, (310) 360-1400, www.rnrpub.com.

Rush Street: This high-end sports bar is serving up gourmet snacks on Super Bowl Sunday. Diners will be able to try dishes such as warm pretzels with beer cheese fondue, avocado fries, lobster and shrimp egg rolls, and a trio of hummus. For those with a bigger appetite, the gastropub will be serving pizzas, like caramelized onion, fig, pancetta and goat cheese, along with burgers, sandwiches and salads. It will also have an extensive drink menu including team-themed specialty cocktails. 9546 Washington Blvd., Culver City, (310) 837-9546 www.rushstreetculvercity.com.


Anthony Bourdain visits College of the Canyons on Feb. 9

'Moveable Feasts' dinner series by Los Angeles Nomadic Division

Tar & Roses open in Santa Monica

--Leah Rodrigues


Photo: Jeremy Back, assistant general manager of City Tavern. Credit: Gary Friedman/ Los Angeles Times

3 Food Events You Should Know About: Nathan's hot dog eating contest in South Bay; Bruery beer-maker dinner at Craft; Old Pasadena Restaurant Week

Hotdogs The Bruery meets Craft: Orange County's Bruery is the featured brewer at Craft's first beer-maker dinner of 2011, on Monday, June 6. So here's the planned menu: charred calamari salad with Fresno chiles and oregano, with Hottenroth wheat beer; cured yelloweye snapper and watermelon, Thai basil and crispy rice, with Trade Winds, a tripel with Thai basil; buckwheat tagliatelle, bratwurst, morels and onion soubisse, with Saison Rue, a Belgian-French farmhouse ale with rye; Ellensburg lamb sweetbreads, green chickpeas and fava beans, with Marron Acidifie Imperial Oud Bruin and Mischief Belgian strong ale; California cheese, with Rugbrød Danish rye ale; and mignardises, with Cuir bourbon barrel-aged ale. A reception is at 6:30 p.m., dinner's at 7. $95 per person. Contact Anna Morini for reservations at [email protected] or call (424) 204-7485. (Reservations cannot be made via Open Table for this event.) 10100 Constellation Blvd., Los Angeles, www.craftlosangeles.com. 

Hot dogs galore: Nathan's in Hawthorne -- the only Nathan's Famous in the L.A. area -- is holding a hot dog eating contest on Sunday, June 12, at South Bay Ford. It's one of 16 qualifying rounds leading to the annual July 4 contest on Coney Island. (FYI, Joey Chestnut of San Jose holds the world record for eating 68 Nathan's Famous hot dogs -- with buns -- in 10 minutes. He is seeking his fifth straight title this year.) Registration is closed because of the number of applicants, but you can watch. Noon to 4 p.m. 5100 Rosecrans Ave., Hawthorne.

Pasadena restaurant week: More than 20 Pasadena restaurants will take part in the third annual Old Pasadena Restaurant Week,  June 1-8. Three-course meals will start at $15 for lunch and $25 for dinner, with part of the proceeds benefiting Union Station Homeless Services. Participating restaurants include Vertical Wine Bistro, Pop Champagne & Dessert Bar, Café Santorini, Quadrupel Brasserie, 1810 Argentinean Restaurant, Villa Sorriso and Sushi Roku. For a complete list of restaurants and menus, go to www.oldpasadena.org/restaurantweek.


Get your new Peruvian at Chimu

5 Questions for Sebastien Archambault

Enter our burger contest

-- Betty Hallock  

Photo: Joey Chestnut. Credit: Stan Honda/EPA.

SBE to open Papaya King, the Sayers Club, Mercato di Vetro Italian restaurant and a lounge called the Library in the Redbury Hotel

On Wednesday, SBE officially announced its buyout of Hollywood nightlife king David Judaken's Syndicate Hospitality, a move that made SBE founder Sam Nazarian the most powerful operator of clubs on the West Coast.

The story that ran in Wednesday's paper also highlighted a number of new restaurants and lounges that SBE will roll out in the coming months: a West Coast location of New York hot-dog stand Papaya King, a live music venue called the Sayers Club, an Italian restaurant called Mercato di Vetro and a second-floor lounge at the Redbury Hotel called the Library.

Nazarian so loves Papaya King that he bought the restaurant's West Coast franchise rights in order to open this first outlet, as well as outlets in Nevada, Arizona and Miami. And to tease the new location, Nazarian plans to roll out a Papaya King food truck to dole out hot dogs across the city.

"Who doesn't love a hot dog?" said Nazarian. "Papaya King was the first juice bar in the country. Babe Ruth named it. It has a tremendous history."

Those visiting the Papaya King will receive an added treat when they realize that they can walk through the restaurant's kitchen (Nazarian was inspired by La Esquina in New York) to enter a live music venue called the Sayers Club that will probably open in mid-to-late May.

Continue reading »

Iconic Pink’s hot dogs joins LAX culinary lineup

Have hot dogs, will travel?

Pink’s hot dogs, the iconic eatery that’s been at the same location for the last seven decades, will open an outpost Thursday at the Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport.

Expect that sweet chili smell to pervade cabin spaces as folks stash one or two to take on their flights.

Read on at our Travel blog:

Photo: The new Pink’s hot dog stand at LAX had a “soft” opening before Thursday’s official event. Credit: Pink’s


Betty White goes naked (on her hot dog!)

Betty White is everywhere!

The six-time Emmy winner boasted a Super Bowl commercial, was lovingly roasted at the Screen Actors Guild Awards (before receiving a lifetime achievement honor) and is set to host Saturday Night Live on May 8. If that's not enough -- and it's not, c'mon, everyone loves Betty -- she now has her own hot dog.

White was at Universal CityWalk on Monday to mark the opening of Pink’s newest hot dog stand. It was also the unveiling of a new menu item -- the Betty White “Naked” hot dog. Now, get your mind out of the gutter. The hot dog is thusly named because Betty White likes her hot dogs simple. Nothing on them.

Naked, if you will.

--Rene Lynch
On Twitter @renelynch

Photo credit: Universal CityWalk

Beer cheese and pizza-sized pretzels: Dodger Stadium's new menu items for 2010 season

Dodger Stadium Victory Knot giant pretzel Few things about sporting events make me giddy. I mean, I like the cheering, the good-natured rivalries, the spirit colors -- but the part that really makes me swoon? Game food. So when it comes to baseball -- where it is completely acceptable to hang out with friends and guiltlessly down hot dogs and beer -- I say count me in.

Dodger Stadium understands that the food gets (almost) as much attention as the game. So Executive Chef Joseph Martin and restaurant partner Levy Restaurants have made sure that when the Dodgers play the Arizona Diamondbacks on Opening Day next Tuesday (April 13), fans will be able to munch on exciting new food while warming those bleachers.

New on the menu is the giant Victory Knot pretzel with beer cheese dipping sauce, gourmet Niman Ranch sausages and the spicy Picante Dog, back by popular demand (literally -- it has its own Facebook fan group which was dedicated to bringing it back from menu dormancy).

The new pizza-sized Victory Knot is made with two pounds of dough, topped with sea salt and served with three dipping sauces -- chipotle honey mustard, sweet cinnamon crème, and beer cheese. The calorie information wasn't available when we wrote this, but we can surmise that it's best not to try and eat one by yourself -- it’s supposed to serve four.

If hot dogs and beer cheese don’t sound like something you want to stomach for nine innings, three Health Plate carts serve healthier fare: spicy shrimp cocktail, fresh seasonal fruit salad, curried chicken lettuce wraps and sushi. Spicy tuna rolls at a baseball game, though? I might just stick with my $5 Dodger Dog.

(Keep reading about Dodger Stadium's new grub after the jump.)

Continue reading »

Sampler Platter: Ludo pops up in Culver City, hummus wars, albino carrots, chili cornbread sandwich

Lebanese chefs joyfully react after breaking a Guinness World Record by making a bowl of hummus weighing more than 2,056 kilograms.

The Hummus War drags on while Amelie Mauresmo sips a 1982 Lafite Rothschild and albino carrots plot a return to store shelves.
--Los Angeles magazine, which features real L.A. waitresses in November's fashion spread, says chef Ludovic Lefebvre will do a pop-up restaurant in Culver City come December.
--Regional cuisine war simmers as Lebanon retakes from Israel the coveted world record for largest plate of hummus. Yahoo! News
--All McDonald's in Iceland to close after krona collapse. Bloomberg
--Chili cornbread sandwich gains national fame. Marshall News Messenger
--After centuries away, albino carrots return to store shelves. Daily Mail
--Slate explores the world of hardcore couponing.
--The culinary adventures of chef Celestino Drago. LAist
--French tennis star Amélie Mauresmo shares her passion for collecting wine. Wine Spectator
--"Corndog on a PLane," art that delivers what it promises. Finally. Etsy
--Half of Britons injured by their biscuits (i.e. cookies) on coffee break. Telegraph
--Elina Shatkin

--Photo: Lebanese chefs joyfully react after breaking a Guinness World Record by making a bowl of hummus weighing more than 2,056 kilograms. Credit: Hussein Malla / AP

Sampler Platter: promo Whopper has 7 patties, sparkling wine vs. champagne, urban chickening

Bill Connell, 55, stands in front of his Surf Dog stand in Carpinteria. He's been in the hot dog business since he left his native New Jersey when he was 38.

Urban chickens and urban food critics lead this end-of-the-week roundup of food news.

--Burger King's Windows 7 Whopper has 7 patties, 2,120 calories. Japanator
--The Atlantic explores six Australian foods worth trying and the role of food critics in the Internet age.
--Carpinteria hot dog vendor relishes his sales-tax victory. Los Angeles Times
--Sparkling wine is just as good as champagne (when it's well made). Consumerist
--The perils of urban chickening. New York Times
--David Lazarus asks: Is Smart Choices misleading? Los Angeles Times

-- Elina Shatkin

Photo: Bill Connell, 55, stands in front of his Surf Dog stand in Carpinteria. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times

Sampler Platter: Babycakes cupcake recipe revealed, Pink's Hot Dogs opens in Las Vegas, sushi robots on the rise

Sue Moore's Let's Be Frank food trailer serves hot dogs made from grass-fed cows and humanely raised pigs.

You want the recipe for Babycakes' much-loved vegan chocolate cupcakes? You got it! This and more in today's food news roundup.
--Eight great street-food vendors in Los Angeles. Gourmet
--Will investors show an appetite for local food? An exploration of the venture capitalism behind the slow food movement featuring the Let's Be Frank hot dog truck. Los Angeles Times
--I, for one, salute our sushi robot overlords. YouTube
--Playboy bunnies, B-grade reality starlets and former Spice Girls show up for grand opening of Pink's Hot Dogs in Las Vegas. Monsters and Critics
--A postmortem on the failure of the iconic Tavern on the Green. New York Times
--Gwyneth Paltrow sits down with Erin McKenna, the founder of Babycakes NYC (slated to open its first LA location... eventually) and gets her recipes for chocolate cupcakes and vanilla frosting, double chocolate chip cookies and lemon poppy tea cake. Goop
--Fort Smith, Arkansas considers a 3% table tax. Restaurateurs unhappy. KFSM
--Elina Shatkin

Photo: Sue Moore's Let's Be Frank food trailer serves hot dogs made from grass-fed cows and humanely raised pigs. Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times

Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


Recent Posts
5 Questions for Thi Tran |  August 6, 2012, 8:00 am »
SEE-LA hires new executive director |  July 31, 2012, 9:34 am »
Food FYI: Actors reading Yelp reviews |  July 31, 2012, 9:16 am »
Test Kitchen video tip: Choosing a bread wash |  July 31, 2012, 6:04 am »



About the Bloggers
Daily Dish is written by Times staff writers.