Nashville is special in a lot of ways. The "Music City" was once known as the "Athens of the South," and its reproduction classical Greek Parthenon is now one of the city's prime attractions—a gathering spot for residents and tourists alike. Then there's the Tomato Art Fest and the city's famous cinnamon bun, along with a zany eye-popping pink bus comedy tour. All good reasons to love this funky American hot spot!
But Nashville also rivals better-known Chicago as a great spot to grab a dog. It's true, and you can pretty much orders yours any way you want it in Nashville. Here are some places that earn consistent raves:
Hot Diggity Dogs
(edit: permanently closed)
This familiar favorite at 614 Ewing Avenue serves up Nashville Dogs (shipped direct from Chicago) and it has a loyal following. Traditional Chicago Dogs satisfy most palates, but there are plenty of other choices, including Texas, New York and Boston dogs, bacon-wrapped dogs and plain dogs, a vegetarian dog and even a Diggity burger. The prices are right and the go-withs include not only fries but onion rings, chips and fried pickles. The downside? It's open only Tuesday through Saturday, and closes at 4:30 in the afternoon.
I Dream of Weenie
Yes, really! In a converted VW bus on Nashville's East End, this is the place to go for weekend weenie brunch. Sit on the grass as you savor a slaw dog or try one slathered with pimento cheese, Tennessee chow chow or spicy chili, jalapenos, cheese and salsa. It's hot! The place is crowded, so be prepared for a wait, but it's worth it! Formerly all cash, they now accept cards.
Found in the up-and-coming East Nashville this is the choice for artsy people in between touring art galleries. With the famous chargrilled hot dog found in a building with a yellow Volkswagen bus coming out of the side, this is an interesting place to visit.
Cori's Dog House
With a menu that also features a variety of sausages on "butter-grilled New England-style buns," Cori's offers no less than 38 specialty dogs from all parts of the USA. You're sure to find one—or more—to love at this friendly dog house at 106 29th Ave. North. They claim there are four million possibilities with topping options so it might take some time to eat your way through the menu. But Cori's is open seven days a week!
Gabby's Burgers and Fries
If you're into real beef, head for Gabby's at 493 Humphreys Street. Not only do they serve grass-fed beef burgers, but also big, all-beef hot dogs, and they're real proud of their limited menu. Add chili or cheddar cheese to your dog or your burger, or order a chicken or veggie burger if you must, but this is a straightforward place to get simple food done right, including great shakes, good fries and tasty cookies. Hours are 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Friday night until 7:30, but closed Sunday.
Rudie's Seafood and Sausage
Not your typical hot dog shack, but if you're down for new taste treats like unusual brats and sausages, head for Rudie's. There's fresh fish and seafood, specialties like Jambalaya and shrimp and grits, unusual salads, and a friendly taproom with specialty cocktails and beer served in the right glassware at the proper temperature. Open from 4 to 10 p.m. seven days a week and for Sunday brunch, in Riverside Village at 1402 McGavock Pike.
Hearty eaters can't get enough of Double Dogs—menu options include breakfast dogs with bacon and eggs as well as a traditional ballpark pair served with mustard, relish and onions. What could be better than that? With a couple of Nashville locations as well as restaurants in Knoxville and Lexington, Double Dogs can quickly become a good habit, and they also have a "fetch and go" option.
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