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Haute dogs
Milwaukeeans will never be barking up the wrong tree when it comes to quality hot dogs with a zing and a twist. The following are among the area’s best.

Photos by Matt Haas

June 2015

The Dogg Haus

755 N. Water St., (414) 226-2664

3116 N. Downer Ave. , (414) 332-2810

1633 W. Wells St., (414) 933-9179

790 N. Jefferson St., (414)270-3455

1433 E. Brady St., (414) 727-1224

For a quintessential tube steak, Milwaukeeans have plenty of choices when it comes to finding an award-winning Dogg Haus. There’s a pack of strategically located sites, all offering top Vienna Beef products.  The Chicago Dogg is always a five-star winner, with its yellow mustard, onions, relish, peppers, kosher pickle and tomatoes, plus a dash of celery salt.  For exotica, the Sante Fe is slathered in salsa, with sour cream and jalapenos.  Then there’s the Atlanta, Cajun Sizzler, Rome, Atlantic City, Kansas City and additional varieties, each with its special gourmet touches.  When traveling, look for a Dogg Haus in Eau Claire, Hudson and Minneapolis.




Black Sheep

216 S. 2nd St., (414) 223-0903,

Black Sheep is not sheepish about pitching a wide selection of dogs and a seasonal menu tweaked by chef Chris Green. The Armada is a snappy delicacy from Madison’s Underground Meats, with green chorizo, pickled red onion, mint, cilantro and lime zest crema on a brioche bun. The Trailer Park Dog is a marvelous Usinger’s beef wiener, complemented by coleslaw, braised onions and cheese sauce on a pretzel bun. A big Wooster Dog is another Usinger’s beef wiener, resplendent with arugula, ever-so-smooth fig jam, hearty blue cheese and a flavorful sherry vinegar gastrique on a brioche bun. On the Lam is a house-made lamb sausage with toasted sumac and a blast of tzatziki sauce, along with pickled carrot and feta cheese, all tucked into a brioche bun. The Wooster and Trailer Park top the popularity poll, according to the waitstaff.



Dr. Dawg

6969 N. Port Washington Road, Glendale, (414) 540-0400, 7700 W. Layton Ave., Greenfield, (414) 810-1900;

There’s nary a trans-fat to be found at Dr. Dawg, a self-described "fast casual" eating experience that emphasizes "comfort food with a healthy twist." The menu includes a traditional Chicago-style and a Cheese Dawg slathered with melted Wisconsin cheddar, each in 6-inch and 12-inch dimensions. The leaders of this pup pack are the Wagyu Kobe Dawg and a quarter-pound, 7-inch, all-beef sirloin dog called the Dr. Dawg. If still hungry, go for the Dawg Party Pack, consisting of 40 hot dogs and buns with condiments. The Dog Doc (aka David Ross) also has a mobile unit that can bring enough dawgs to serve up to 1,000 folks. Don’t forget the ’slaw.





Larry’s Market

8737 N. Deerwood Drive, Brown Deer,(414) 355-9650,

The deli in Larry’s Market’s dishes up its dogs in a variety of stylish toppings for Thursday’s Dog Day, with ever-changing weekly delights that have included such five-star marvels as a Vienna all-beef hot dog with scrambled eggs and a Nueske bacon and Hook’s fabled cheddar on a pretzel bun. In addition to such a super special dog, a Chicago-style and chili dogs are always on the Thursday menu. During nice weather, the market’s "Hot Dog Princess," Jen Wieckowski, manages an outside dog wagon, and every April, the store now holds an annual Create-a-Dog Contest.





The Vanguard

2659 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., (414) 539-3593,

The ‘Guard is the brainchild of Chris Schulist, ex-Cactus Club bar manager; Jim McCann, a partner in Chicago’s fabled Longman & Eagle restaurant; and chef Shay Linkus, formerly of Odd Duck. The trio platters a monster selection of stylish sausages, with the menu cheerfully suggesting paired beverages. Among the top tube dogs here are the Bellomo, a pork sausage with sautéed peppers served with a Spaten German lager, or the Chili Dog, best with a Bell’s Two-Hearted Ale. All the dogs are made in-house or by special order with the eatery’s own recipes. Yes, there is also a plain dog, and for non-meaters, Soy Meets World is a remarkable vegan Italian, best with a Karbena Block Party amber.


This story ran in the June 2015 issue of: