Friday, August 14, 2009

Hot, Hot, Hot Dog

People often mistake my passion for food as a sign of culinary snobbery—and while I certainly love a good meal at a four star restaurant, nothing beats a simple dish really well done. Case in point: Blackie’s. Family-owned and operated since the early 1920’s, Blackie’s is a modest roadside food stand caught in a 50’s timewarp that offers a limited, but decidedly delicious menu of standard fare: hot dogs, hamburgers, ice cream. What is it, then, that has made Blackie’s in Chesire such an attraction? What could possibly inspire such cult-like devotion from it’s customers? Why, pepper relish, of course. Basic is definitely the name of the game here. No chili, cheese, or unruly combonation. Ketchup, spicy brown mustard, and pepper relish. It might sound rather boring, but this pepper relish is nowhere close to that jarred green stuff you find in the supermarket. It’s brown, hot, spicy, and a little sweet. It takes the perfectly juicy Hummel-brand dogs to the next level. I loaded my dogs with a layer of mustard first, then a generous helping of relish. I like my spice, but this stuff definitely has a kick. Some of it got on my face and it was a little burny afterwards—but so worth it. Does it get any better, you may ask? At $2.50 a dog, you bet it does.

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