FORT LEE, N.J. -- The classic hot dog, in all its bronzed, charred perfection, holds a special place in the hearts – and stomachs -- of most Americans, especially come summer. July, in fact, is National Hot Dog Month, thanks to the designation by the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council.
Who Has Bergen County's Best Hot Dogs?
Callahan's, Fort Lee
Hank's Franks, Lodi
Hiram's, Fort Lee
Jolly Nick's, Dumont
So where’s the best place to slather on the toppings and indulge in the perfect weiner? Daily Voice readers picked five nominees for our DVlicious “Best in Bergen County,” contest, each of which has been profiled this week.
Read below for what makes each nominee a “top dog,” then let your fingers do the clicking. Keep in mind you can vote multiple times, albeit once per day. Voting ends 4 p.m. Thursday, July 28.Callahan's, 1400 Anderson Ave., Fort Lee, (201) 947-3213
Frank Talk: The "So Big, So Good" snappy fried dog that Lenny Castrianni's dad, Leonard “Artie” Castrianni, made famous more than five decades ago remains a solid draw at the new location on Anderson Avenue -- blocks from where the original Callahan's stood.
But it's not the biggest seller.
"Our most popular products have been our Italian Dog, which is served in a freshly baked pizza roll topped with potatoes, peppers, and onions," Castrianni said. "And our Fort Lee Burger, which is topped with lettuce, tomato, bacon, blue cheese, crispy onions, and mayo.
"And our delicious sweet potato waffle fries."
Top This : Castrianni's mom, Ida, distributed dogs on the April day the new store opened. Her son -- who co-owns the eatery with former high school classmate Greg Pappas -- hopes to open a coffee and espresso station.
Callahan’s Hot Dog Emporium is run separately from the Callahan's run in Norwood by Castrianni's nephew, Danny DeMiglio.
The federally registered trademark is shared by trusts set up by Artie Castrianni for his wife, his son, his daughter (DeMiglio's mother) and another sibling, Lenny Castrianni told Daily Voice.