TNT Diner

Good eats and drinks around Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound

NOTICE: TNT Diner has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved TNT Diner.
Visit the new section.

Welcome to hot dog town, population you. Two new hot dog restaurants open in Tacoma

Post by Sue Kidd / The News Tribune on Sep. 28, 2010 at 6:38 pm | 3 Comments »
September 29, 2010 3:24 pm
The Chicago Dog at Deli & Dog, a new restaurant that opened two months ago in Freighthouse Square.

So …. hot dogs.

Can we not get enough?

In August, I wrote about hot dog trucks and trailers popping up from Tacoma to Buckley to Fife. And now a mobile sidewalk hot dog stand, Hot Dogs To Go, has started serving dogs from a portable grill on Tacoma Avenue South.

And what about stationary dog restaurants? Well, add Dog & Deli at Freighthouse Square to the growing list of hot dog diners and walk-in restaurants that also includes Hot Rod Dog (two locations), The Red Hot on Sixth and Sully’s Alder Street Café in Sumner.

So … this begs the question … can we get enough of hot dogs? Will they become the new cupcakes? Will the mere mention of them make us roll our eyes and yearn for whatever the next food trend will bring? I’m guessing no, but you can tell me otherwise. Just comment below.

Click “more” to read about Hot Dogs To Go and Dog & Deli.


Tony Lorenzo Wright’s hot dog stand Hot Dogs To Go appears as if from nowhere. He rolls up to Eighth and Tacoma Avenue South, across the street from McDonalds, and sets up a portable sidewalk grill where he grills kielbasa, Polish dogs, all-beef dogs, Italian sausage, Louisiana hot links and veggie dogs for $5 each, plus tax. He’s there Tuesdays-Fridays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

All dogs come with a bag of chips and a drink. He tops his dogs with a choice of onions, sauerkraut, pepperoncini, relish, mustard, ketchup, mayo and cream cheese. Order the “trifecta” and you’ll get a dog covered with onions, sauerkraut and pepperoncini. A “dog in the cloud” comes with cream cheese and anything else you want on it.

He’s been operating his mobile hot dog stand for three weeks, but he’s helped his brother with his mobile hot dog business, Seattle Sausage, which serves fans of the Seahawks, Mariners and Sounders just off Occidental near the stadiums on game days.

Hot Dogs to Go opened three weeks ago at Eighth and Tacoma Avenue South. It operates from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays

Wright told me he leases the space from the owner of the building where he operates on Tacoma Avenue South. If you’re wondering about his licensing, he displays his mobile vending permit from the Tacoma Pierce County Health Department and his business license.

Hot Dogs To Go
Where: Corner of Eighth and Tacoma Avenue South, across from McDonald’s, near the County-City Building
Info: 253-223-7043


Something new seems to open every few months at Freighthouse Square. My most recent visit to the food court at Freighthouse dug up this find – Dog & Deli, a tiny walk-up restaurant that lists more than 20 different kinds of gourmet dogs as well as deli sandwiches (think pastrami and Philly cheesesteaks). It opened less than two months ago in the sliver of a space across from Mediterranean Palace.

The classic dogs are represented – Coney and Chicago – and diners can select from specialty dogs like the Denver (the Colorado Rockies dog with grilled peppers, sauerkraut and onions), the Memphis (coleslaw and barbecue), the Acapulco (cheese, jalapenos, tomato, avocado), the New York (mustard and sautéed onions) and Kansas City (sauerkraut and melted Swiss on a poppy seed bun). And the list goes on. I tried not to be too offended that Dog & Deli didn’t list a Tacoma dog on a menu that, ahem, includes a Seattle dog (cream cheese, kraut, onions and deli mustard). Feel free to give them the business about that.

I didn’t have the guts to try the “dessert dog,” a kid dog with peanut butter and honey ($3.99) or the pastrami kraut dog ($6.99). I kept my order pure and simple – a classic Chicago ($4.99, with potato salad or chips).

It was as authentic as you’ll find around here: a poppy seed bun, all-beef Nathan’s (no skin, though), a squiggle of mustard, diced onions, neon green pickle relish, a pickle spear, two slices of tomato and five (yes, five) sport peppers. A sprinkle of celery salt finished the dog. I watched as it was made and was impressed to see my bun go into what looked to be a steamer. I think I’m going to like this place. Potato salad on the side was creamy, but with a too-sweet mayo dressing.

Dog & Deli
Where: 430 E. 25th St., Tacoma
Info: 253-363-3812

And here are other hot dog restaurants, mobile and stationary, you may want to check out:


Tommy Chicago Hot Dogs, Tacoma
Where: 111 112th St. S., Tacoma (Cash & Carry) UPDATE: This is the brand new location for Tommy Chicago, the grand opening at this location is this Saturday, Oct. 2.
Phone: 253-882-5561
My last story about Tommy Chicago here.

Dave’s 21 Dogs
Where: 27815 State Route 410 East, Buckley, in the parking lot of Dave’s Deals on Wheels
Info: 253-255-0045
Read my review from August here

Oh My Dog
Where: 4315 Pacific Highway East, Fife, the parking lot of B.J.’s II Tobacco
Info: 253-347-7074
Read my review from August here


The Red Hot
Where: 2914 Sixth Ave., Tacoma
Phone: 253-779-0229
Web site:
Read my review of The Red Hot in April here

Sully’s Alder Street Café/Lucky Hot Dog
Where: 909 Alder St., Sumner
Info: 253-891-0586
Read my review of their breakfast in April here

Hot Rod Dog (two locations)
Pacific: 1742 Pacific Ave. Tacoma; 253-593-6030
Tacoma Avenue: 1103 Tacoma Ave. S., Tacoma
Read my review from March here

The News Tribune now uses Facebook commenting on selected blogs. See editor's column for more details. Commenters are expected to abide by terms of service for Facebook as well as commenting rules for Report violators to