The Best Raleigh Hot Dog Joints : Well Known and Well Deserved


Just as we looked at in the first of our two part series in quest for the Best Raleigh Hot Dog Joints, the search goes on! Well, with the “final four” entries here today, there actually is not much of a search. The following four places are well known for these “all-American” sausages. Most that have called the Triangle area home have at some point chose their own toppings and condiments at these establishments. Now that you call the South Lakes community in Fuquay Varina home, you are just minutes up the highway from joining those residents. Much like many of them, it would seem unlikely that anyone giving them a try would not wind up a repeat customer.

Best Raleigh Hot Dog Joints: The Local Legends

The term “legend” is thrown around quite loosely these days. Whether it is the tag on a star athlete, musician, movie star, or in this case some type of food. But when defined as “very well known” or “extremely famous” these “red hots” certainly fit “in the roll.”

The Roast Grill- Raleigh- The “Burnt Dog,” Naked

The “icon” among the Best Hot Dogs in Raleigh since opening in 1940. The Roast Grill is an institution and so is its “burnt” hot dog. Just as the owner George Poniros’ grandmother once instilled, they still have a ban on all ketchup! Likewise, the “Roast” does not believe in “dirtying” a dog with relish, kraut, cheese, fries, or chips.

Bull City Burger and Brewery- Durham- ” Pimento Dog” 

Everything at Bull City Burger and Brewery (BCBB) is 100 percent made from scratch. They even grind the meat for their entry on the Best Hot Dogs in Raleigh listing. However, giving a spot in the “local legends” has to do with the topping on this dog. The “Pimento Dog” is a butterflied frank, which gives extra space for a big scoop of homemade pimento cheese. Top this with some pickles and you have a “must-try” Triangle area classic.

The Cardinal Bar-Raleigh- “Beer-Braised Dog”

Co-owner at the Cardinal Bar, Jason Howard’s technique may be what earned this entrant among the Best Hot Dogs in Raleigh. He boils the franks in beer, then before grilling the rolls, slathers them with Duke’s Mayonnaise instead of butter. You can customize the “Beer Braised Dog” with an array of toppings. Relish, beer onions, bacon, sriracha, and pickled onions are just a few you can pick. These are all local ingredients and for a twist, they also offer the same dog in a locally made “veggie” dog offering from Nashville, NC.

King’s Sandwich Shop, Durham- “The Corn Dog”

Another American classic closes out our Best Hot Dogs in Raleigh list. If Kings’ hot dogs taste familiar, it’s because they have been the official stadium dog in Durham for decades. The nostalgic and delicious battered hot dog on a stick is as good as you remember. Just waiting for you to come back for a taste.

The Best Hot Dogs in Raleigh: Try Any, Try All!

With your new location an hour from Raleigh and Durham and in some cases less, these staples of the Raleigh food community are all worth trying. Sure, we realize everyone is not in the mood for a hot dog every day. Likewise, we know that you are not going to have the extra time  to travel for dinner or lunch all the time. However, now that you reside in Fuquay Varina, when you have the time, and are feeling “American,” head on. out and find a great dog.

For more information on the South Lakes neighborhood, visit