Whether you’re hitting it with a simple squirt of yellow mustard, or piling it to the sky with mac and cheese, the hot dog is a perfect canvas for creativity. Give someone a wiener, a bun, and a toppings bar, and you’ll quickly learn whether he’s a a classicist, a tinkerer, or a hedonist.
With this notion of hot-dog-as-personality-test in mind, we decided to try a little experiment: Pair up some of our favorite musicians with some of NYC’s best chefs, and ask them to collaborate on a special tag-team hot dog.
Needless to say, there’s only one place to serve these one-of-a-kind wieners: PDT, the trailblazing East Village cocktail bar that has a rich tradition of serving signature franks from some of the city’s most brilliant culinary minds, including Wylie Dufresne and David Chang. (As New York magazine recently put it, “getting a vanity hot dog on the PDT menu is the downtown equivalent of a Michelin star.”)
And so, we’re excited to announce The Hot Dog Sessions, a monthlong series of collaboration hot dogs, each available for one week only at PDT.
Find the rundown of the three artist-chef hot dog residencies below, plus our own FWF dog with Andrew Carmellini of the Dutch to close out the month. A few pro tips for those looking to get their hands on these limited-edition dogs:
- PDT is small and extremely popular. We strongly recommend making reservations by calling 212-614-0386.
- PDT is hard to find. To get into the bar, walk into Crif Dogs at 113 St Marks Place. To your left, you’ll see a phone booth. Walk into the phone booth, pick up the receiver, and you’ll be able to speak to the host on the other side of the wall, who will either let you in or quote you a wait time (like we said: get reservations).
- Follow @firstwefeast on Twitter, where we’ll be giving out two-person reservations to lucky readers throughout the month.
Stay tuned for more behind-the-scenes intel on each of these collabos as the week’s progress, and remember: PDT is also a world-class cocktail bar, so plan to snag some life-changing drinks from head bartender Jeff Bell and the gang when you go in.
Action Bronson x Michael White (May 4-10)
The hot dog: “Baby Blue Bronson”—fried, bacon-wrapped Crif Dog with gorgonzola dolce, calabrian chili, and cherry relish on a Martin’s potato bun
The background: The wise-cracking rap gourmand and the Prince of Pasta have a long-standing friendship. Bronson famously referenced White’s flagship restaurant on wax (“Parmesan crisp, we wildin’ in Marea!”), and Chef Bianco tells us he’s always been impressed with Bam Bam’s culinary knowledge: “The guy is such a good eater. He has quite a palate.”
Dieselboy x Bryce Shuman (May 11-17)
The hot dog: “Demi Dog”—Crif Dog, labne, Indian lime pickle, za’atar, clover, beef fat, puffed grains, harissa powder
The background: Dieselboy has established his food cred through guest-chef gigs with the likes of Jonathon Sawyer and Alex Stupak, not to mention his valiant efforts in the First We Feast Nacho Battles, of course. Shuman remembers going to Dieselboy shows long before building one of NYC’s best new fine-dining destinations at Betony, so when the two finally met last year, they bonded naturally over their shared love of cooking and music.
Estelle x April Bloomfield (May 18-24)
The hot dog: “West Indian Garden”—all-beef “New Yorker” dog, jerk BBQ sauce, creamy giardiniera, Scotch bonnet peppers, fried shallots
The background: The “American Boy” songstress and Spotted Pig chef had admired each other’s work from afar before they met for the first time to dream up a hot dog. But they are both British and awesome, so they quickly bonded over tea (PG Tips!) and lemonade (R. Whites!) before getting to work on a West Indian-inspired “banger.”
Andrew Carmellini x First We Feast (May 25-31)
The hot dog: Rampatron 3000—Bacon-wrapped Crif dog, country-fried buttermilk crust, honey-mustard glaze, coleslaw, rampkraut, Martin’s potato bun
The background: Since we aren’t world-class chefs or musicians, we let AC—the mastermind behind The Dutch, Lafayette, Little Park, et al—take the lead here. It’s basically the best of all worlds: hot dog, chicken tender, and spring-vegetable explosion (ramps!) all in one spicy, crunchy, and salty package. Don’t sleep on this one.
See you at PDT (113 St Marks Pl; 212-614-0386, pdtnyc.com) for The Hot Dog Sessions!