Hot pursuit: Where to find Tampa Bay's top dogs

As you journey throughout the Bay area, this list will help you chow down hot doggie-style.

click to enlarge Hot pursuit: Where to find Tampa Bay's top dogs - Chris Fasick
Chris Fasick
Hot pursuit: Where to find Tampa Bay's top dogs

Though many of these Tampa Bay hot doggeries jazz up their wieners with creative twists and toppers, they also offer up unaltered regional classics, including Chicago dogs, Polish sausage and Coneys. Here’s where to score these mighty fine franks.

Americanwiener Modern franks and sausages with local, fresh ingredients — including The Capone Dog with Roma tomatoes, piccalillis, wild cucumber spears and more — churn out of this restaurant-on-wheels. Run by Amy and Ben Laffey, the truck also dresses up hand-cut fries and breakfast. Wesley Chapel, 813-720-7692, americanwienertruck.com.

Bono’s Salads & Sandwiches This 32-year-old mainstay specializes in Windy City fare like Vienna beef dogs between steamed poppy-seed buns, as well as Italian beef and sausage subs. If you go, Bono’s is cash only. 6721 Ulmerton Road, Largo, 727-535-1111, bonoslargo.com.

Bruce’s Chicago Grill & Dog House Another dreamy Largo spot, owned by Bruce Karlin, for wiener enthusiasts. Pastrami sandwiches, house-made shakes and more are served alongside the loaded Chicago dog (mustard, relish, onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, celery salt, sport peppers and a dill pickle slice). 7733 Ulmerton Road, Largo, 727-524-1146.

BurgerFi Top your Kobe-style, Vienna or chicken apple dog with a number of fixings — sauerkraut, chili and sport peppers among them — from this laid-back burger chain. The ice cream’s tasty, too. 714 S. Howard Ave., Tampa, 813-440-2283, burgerfi.com.

BurgerMonger With its fifth restaurant now open in South Tampa, Burger Monger cradles the split 1/4-pound Monger Dog in a grilled bun with your toppers of choice. 903 E. Bloomingdale Ave., Brandon, 813-684-7982, burgermonger.com.

Burger 21 A fast-casual burger brand with gourmet franks offered on a grilled-then-split lobster roll. The Great Dane features pickled cukes, onion strings, tomatoes and remoulade sauce. There are three Burger 21 locations throughout Tampa. 11777 N. Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa, 813-405-3595, burger21.com.

Chic Doggie This BOTB-winning hot dog stand is worth a trip to Home Depot even if you’re not there to shop. Choose from brats, sausages and Chicago dogs, plus ketchup, yellow and brown mustard, relish, onions, peppers and, yes, ketchup. 2300 22nd Ave. N., St. Petersburg.

Chicago Paulie’s Launched six years ago, Chicago Paulie’s offers chili and New York-inspired dogs, veggie burgers and Polish sausage in addition to its authentic Chicagoan frank and Italian beef. 1301 N. Howard Ave., Tampa, 813-446-4865, chicagopaulie.com.

Coney Island Sandwich Shop These old-school, true-to-Michigan links, smothered in a classic Coney sauce, have been satisfying taste buds since the Barlas family established the place in 1926. 250 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. N., St. Petersburg, 727-822-4493.

Detroit Coney Island A wiener spot that’ll transport you to Detroit. The restaurant’s namesake comes covered with chili, mustard and onions, while items like the Polish platter and corned beef sandwich round out the specialties. 600 Mandalay Ave., Clearwater, 727-408-5225, detroitconeyislandllc.com.

Dixie’s Little Dog House This casual beachside gem offers around 10 dogs with a selection of favored toppings (chili, cheese, coleslaw, sweet peppers and the like). Sausages and bratwurst are available as well. 250 107th Ave., Treasure Island, 727-360-6001.

The Dog House and More Five types of all-beef franks, ranging from plain to coleslaw-topped to loaded. You’ll order from the outdoor trailer-turned-eatery’s walk-up window before chowing picnic table-style. 204 W. Shell Point Road, Ruskin, 813-419-4325.

Elias Deli & Produce Market Served from this joint’s deli counter, Boar’s Head hot dogs and knockwursts (garlicky pork-veal sausages) are deliciously buried below various trimmings. 3200 34th St. N., St. Petersburg, 727-526-6436, eliasdeli.com.

Engine No. 9 The next time you’re in, swap an Engine burger for one of its Vienna beef dogs. Owner and chef Jason Esposito highlights dressings such as grilled onions and mushrooms, spicy mustard, ‘kraut and sharp Cheddar. 56 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. N., St. Petersburg, 727-623-0938, no9burgers.com.

Engine Rose Inventive 9-inch links, including bison chili and kimchi dogs, are offered from Engine No. 9’s open-air younger sibling. 2901 Central Ave., St. Petersburg, 727-498-8951, no9burgers.com.

Henry’s Chicago Style Polish sausage, Italian beef sandwiches, pizza and way more Chicagoan cuisine staples make up this blink-and-you-miss-it restaurant’s bill of fare. 33135 U.S. Highway 19 N., Palm Harbor, 727-785-7300.

Hot Dogs on Main The minds behind this downtown doggery, Nick Annenos and Susan Norton, showcase Greek, Southern and other creatively spun dogs packed inside poppy-seed buns. Vegetarian-friendly franks and kosher Hebrew Nationals are also on hand. 505 Main St., Dunedin, 727-408-5103.

Jaqx Eatery Snag a traditional Chicago dog on a poppy-seed bun, as well as thin crust pies, tons of tasty ice cream flavors and Philly cheese steaks. 400 Mandalay Ave., Clearwater, 727-462-2902.

Kooky Coconut If you’re heading to or from the sand, this is the place to go for take-away dogs. Ice cream cones, burgers and burritos are included on the menu’s collection of hand-held grub. 760 Gulf Blvd., Indian Rocks Beach, 727-517-1300, kookycoconutcafe.com.

Locale Market When Locale posts photos of its luscious house-made links on Twitter, this food editor swoons. The gourmet market has cooked up offerings such as bison-chorizo sausage, Chicago-style dogs and tomato-basil chicken sausage. 179 Second Ave. N., St. Petersburg, 727-523-6300, localegourmetmarket.com.

Mel’s Hot Dogs In the wiener-slinging biz for more than 40 years, Mel’s carries 20 kinds of links, including bratwurst, skinless and meat-free varieties. Topped with fixin’s, many of the offerings are served over steamed buns and have plenty of snap. 4136 E. Busch Blvd., Tampa, 813-985-8000, melshotdogs.com.

Nathan’s Famous A fast-food franchise with authentic all-beef franks that make die-hard Northerners swoon. Nathan’s, which puts on the annual hot dog-eating competition, even gets its buns delivered from New York. 200 N. Tampa St., Tampa, 813-225-2007, nathansfamous.com.

Q Dogs You can select a bun, style and lineup of toppings to craft a frank your way, but we suggest the restaurant’s signature dog — split and stuffed with pulled pork, Carolina sauce and a pickle — to first-timers. 619 N. Pinellas Ave., Tarpon Springs, 727-940-3422, myqdogs.com.

Yummy’s From the Chicago dog to Polish sausage, this homey restaurant bungalow embraces Vienna beef and eats with Windy City influence. 2914 Beach Blvd. S., Gulfport, 727-321-9869.

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