It’s hot dog season, and if you’re not feeling up to grilling your own, there are plenty of spots in Berkeley to get a wiener in a bun made to order. Below, we’ve compiled a visual guide to six franks you can get from stands and restaurants that consider hot dogs as one of their specialties. Although two spots on our list aren’t technically in Berkeley, they’re classic hot dog joints in Oakland that many Berkeleyans consider near and dear to their hearts (and stomachs).
The Garlic Frankfurter at Top Dog is made with 2/3 beef, 1/3 pork and plenty of fresh garlic. Choose your own toppings. We added sauerkraut, ketchup and mustard.
Top Dog, 2534 Durant Ave. (between Telegraph and Bowditch), Berkeley and 2160 Center St. (at Oxford), Berkeley
The Cheese Dog at Smokehouse is a charred all-beef frankfurter. It comes with melted cheese plus the works — ketchup, mustard, relish and onions.
Smokehouse, 3115 Telegraph Ave. (at Woolsey), Berkeley
The Station’s Chili Dog comes with an all-beef frank topped generously with beef chili. We added cheese to ours.
The Station, 2984 Russell St. (at Claremont), Berkeley
BurgerMeister butterflies and grills all of its 1/3-pound, all-beef dogs. We chose the Street Dog, which comes topped with bacon, grilled onions, red peppers, jalapeño and jalapeño cilantro mayo.
BurgerMeister, 2237 Shattuck Ave. (at Kittredge), Berkeley (plus more locations outside of Berkeley)
Dojo Dog makes Asian-inspired hot dogs, like the Ninjitsu Dog, made with a 100% beef frankfurter and topped with shredded nori, flash-grilled cabbage, teriyaki sauce and Japanese mayo. Note that the Dojo cart is found outside Sierra Nevada Torpedo Room and is only open 4 to 8 p.m. on Thursdays and noon to 8 p.m. on Saturdays.
Dojo Dog, 2031 Fourth St. (at Addison), Berkeley
Yummy Hot Dog Cart is found at the Ashby BART Station. The Polish Sausage Special is an all-beef frank dressed with mayo, mustard, onions, tomatoes and cilantro. We added jalapeño for extra spice.
Yummy Hot Dog Cart, 3100 Adeline St., Berkeley
Kaspers is in the Dimond district of Oakland. Its standard Kasper’s Hot Dog is topped with mustard, relish, onions and tomatoes. It’s an all beef dog.
Kaspers Hot Dogs, 2551 MacArthur Blvd. (between Laguna and Wilson), Oakland
Caspers’ Pickle Dog is a slight variation on the Original Casper Dog. The 100% beef frank comes loaded with dill pickles, mustard, onions and tomatoes.
Caspers Famous Hot Dogs, 5440 Telegraph Ave. (at 55th), Oakland (plus more locations outside of Berkeley)