Washing My First Ridley Ripper Down With a Coney

You won’t find a lot of hot dog posts when searching through this blog’s archives. In addition to my general preference for burgers, cheesesteaks and various other sandwiches, there simply aren’t that many shops or restaurants that specialize in hot dogs in the Philly region. We tend to veer toward the sort of long-roll sandwiches I usually focus on. 

But I still enjoy a good frankfurter and was thrilled by the recent opening of Relish, the Delaware County hot dog and burger stand that I reported on a couple weeks ago. As promised in that previous post, I returned yesterday to check out a couple of the different styles of hot dogs they offer in addition to a draught Lancaster County birch beer. 

The grill chef preps a couple cheeseburgers.

The two menu items that were of primary interest to me Tuesday were the Ridley Ripper and chili-dog. Both normally come topped with Whiz or melted American cheese, but I prefer my dogs without cheese and requested each that way. I also asked for chopped onions and spicy mustard on them.

The indoor counter seats appeared to all be taken when I arrived, so I ordered at the side window and ate my lunch at an outdoor table. 

Relish was out of draught birch beer the last time I was there, but I was in luck in that regard on this occasion. And it was every bit as tasty as I’d have guessed it would be.

My two hot dogs arrive.
Draught Lancaster County Birch Beer

The Ridley Ripper is named after the hot dogs served at the legendary Rutt’s Hut of Clifton, New Jersey – in addition to the township that is home to Relish. They are deep-fried and I was extremely curious about what their texture would be like, as I’d never tried a Ripper before yesterday.

My first Ripper

I’m not sure this Ripper was left in the fryer as long as the ones sold at Rutt’s Hut based on the photos I’ve seen. But it still had a beautifully rugged look and texture in addition to the always-appealing flavor of the Nathan’s franks that they use at Relish.

Look at that beautifully rugged texture. The photo’s red tint is the result of the umbrella that covered the table where I sat.

While I’m not opposed in principle to chili-cheese dogs, I wanted my first chili dog there to be in classic Coney Island-style; meaning topped with the meat chili, chopped raw onions and mustard.

Coney Island-Style Chili Dog

Relish’s signature chili sauce is extremely tasty without being overly spicy. And it blended very well flavor-wise with the frank, onions and mustard. As was the case with the Ridley Ripper, I can certainly see myself having more of these in the future.

Before getting up to leave, I perused the menu to see what might be on tap for my next visit or two. A chili and/or bacon cheeseburger are certainly possibilities, as are the hot smoked and sweet Italian sausages. There are also a couple more milkshake flavors to get to, as well as the beignets with powdered sugar. 

As I said at the end of my last post on Relish, I will be facing frequent temptation to pop over there for lunch given that they’re no more than 15 minutes from my home and have a menu I could have drawn up in a dream.

Published by BZ Maestro

I live outside of Philadelphia and have been food-obsessed for as long as I can remember. After toying with the idea of starting a blog for a fairly long time, the extinction of a food-themed message board that I frequented for years prompted me to finally take action. Thank you for taking the time to check out what I've been up to - and eating. If you've enjoyed what you have read and seen, please consider clicking the "like" button and signing up as a follower.

3 thoughts on “Washing My First Ridley Ripper Down With a Coney

  1. You can’t go wrong with mustard and onion on your hot dog, whatever the variation.

    Maybe it’s just me, but I find that cheese on a hot dog just doesn’t make a compatible taste match.

    When I worked at out Dairy Queen 49 years ago, on my lunch break I deep fried one of our hot dogs more than once, both in split and non-split versions. The taste was a little different from the usual.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. you have a rich, full life ahead of you. I concur that cheese is unnecessary, and that the core f a good hot dog is mustard and raw onions, with acceptable additions being chili and jalapeños.

    There used to be a place in Downtown DC that offered grilled hot dogs wrapped in salami. I continue to wonder why I’ve never seen that anywhere else.

    Liked by 1 person

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