It’s the taste of childhood, of baseball games and of summer backyard picnics. It’s the humble, delicious hot dog—the ultimate casual family meal and a blank canvas for the most exciting of seasonal flavors. Grill it or steam it; choose beef, pork or go meat-free—you and your kids will find endless options at Portland’s most legendary hot dog joints. Scroll down to find out more.

photo: clappstar via flickr

Bro-Dogs
Follow along on Facebook or Twitter to find out where the Bro-Dogs truck is parked, and you’ll discover some of the best, most flavorful hot dogs in the city. It all begins with a perfectly toasted bun from Alessio Bakery, and it ends with your choice of toppings on a flattop-grilled BroDog, smoked sausage or vegan dog. Whether you opt for grilled onions, jalapeños, sauerkraut, cheese or bacon, you’re in for a little taste of heaven.

Bro-Dogs
716-341-1743
Online: Facebook.com

East Side Delicatessen
The canine-themed dogs at East Side Delicatessen are sure to delight every dog and hot-dog-lover in your family. Exclusive to the deli’s North Portland and downtown locations, the beef and veggie dog offerings range from the classic Dachshund with ketchup, mustard and relish to the fierce Pit Bull with pulled pork and cheddar. Care to build your own creation? Choose from an astounding variety of toppings that include everything from avocado to sun dried tomatoes.

Downtown
1438 SW Park Ave.
Mon.-Thurs., 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Fri., 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
503-243-3354
Online: pdxdeli.com

N Portland
4823 N Lombard St.
Sun.-Wed., 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Thurs.-Sat., 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
503-247-3354
Online: pdxdeli.com

SE Portland
4626 S.E Hawthorne Blvd
Mon.-Sun., 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
Online: pdxdeli.com

photo: OP Wurst via Yelp

The Fried Onion
The atmosphere at The Fried Onion is friendly and unassuming, but it’s the New York-style hot dogs that will keep you coming back. The toppings range from Muenster cheese and Mama Lil’s on the Spicy Russian Rover to pastrami, Swiss and sauerkraut on the savory Pastrami Dog. Even the simple New York Dog with sauerkraut and fried onions is a work of art—made all the more appealing by the $1.25 surcharge for Red Sox fans.

The Fried Onion
SE 3rd Avenue & Alder St.
Mon.-Fri., 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
503-961-2534
Online: thefriedonion.com

Nick’s Famous Coney Island
It’s all about the vintage ambience at Nick’s Famous Coney Island, a Portland institution that first opened its doors in 1935. This legendary hangout is an iconic gathering place for sports fans, neighborhood regulars and all lovers of authentic homemade Coney sauce. Opt for a single, double, triple or home run Coney Island, or try the one-of-a-kind Veggie Coney with a tofurkey kielbasa and vegan Coney sauce. No matter if you’re a west coaster or a displaced east coaster, the taste will make you feel right at home.

Nick’s Famous Coney Island
3746 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
503-253-3008
Online: nicksfamousconeys.com

photo: charamelody via flickr

OP Wurst
In 2012, the master craftsmen at Olympia Provisions launched Frankfurter Friday—a beloved weekly event that shined a spotlight on one of Portland’s best hot dogs. Five years later, those fantastic frankfurters have three OP Wurst storefronts of their own, where kids and adults can sample dogs made with local pork, real lamb casings, and buns fresh from Portland French Bakery. Stop by the Pine Street Market location to sample the corn dog drizzled with honey, or try the decadent Frito Pie Dog at the newest outpost on SE Division. But no matter which location you choose, it’s tough to beat the divine simplicity of the classic pork frank.

OP Wurst at Pine Street Market
126 SW 2nd Ave.
Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sat.& Sun., 10 a.m.-10 p.m.
971-386-2199
Online: opwurst.com

OP Wurst Sausage Bar
3384 SE Division St.
Sun.-Thurs., 11 a.m.-midnight; Fri. & Sat., 11-1 a.m.
503-384-2259
Online: opwurst.com

OP Wurst at Oregon City Brewing
1401 Washington St.
Oregon City, Or
Mon.-Thurs., 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Fri. & Sat., 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-8 p.m.
503-908-1948
Online: opwurst.com

Otto’s Sausage Kitchen
In many ways, Otto’s Sausage Kitchen is the birthplace of the hot dog in Portland. Opened in 1922 as Otto’s Meat Market and in its current location since 1936, Otto’s was the brainchild of German sausage-maker-turned-Portlander Otto Eichentopf. For nearly a century, this deli, sausage kitchen and smokehouse has remained true to its traditional recipes and techniques, attracting legions of loyal fans along the way. Bring home a few smoked pork links and chicken sausages, and don’t pass up the chance to enjoy a grilled old fashioned wiener at the tables out front.

Otto’s Sausage Kitchen
4138 SE Woodstock Blvd.
Deli: Mon.-Sat., 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Grilling: Daily, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
503-771-6714
Online: ottossausage.com

photo: Charlie T. via Yelp

Spike’s Hot Dogs
If you’re in search of seemingly endless flavor combinations, you’ll feel right at home at Spike’s Hot Dogs. Once you choose from the signature beef dog, the Walla Walla Onion Dog, the Red Hot Dog, the German Dog, the Poultry Dog or several other dogs (including veggie and vegan dogs), you’ll be set loose upon a fixings bar of more than 50 free condiments. Think Coney sauce, beer barrel mustard, relishes, peppers and other tasty sauces that allow diners to whip up a new creation each and every visit.

Spike’s Hot Dogs
900 SW Alder St.
Daily, 11 a.m.-8 p.m.
503-244-2483
Online: spikeshotdogs.com

Zach’s Shack
With origins as a food cart and a storefront that has stood on SE Hawthorne since 2005, Zach’s Shack is a wonderfully casual stop for a Blazers game, a round of Ping-Pong on the patio and a perfectly snappy all-beef dog. Try the classic Chicago Dog, a condiment-free A Capella Dog or a Zach’s Favorite with brown mustard, red relish, sport peppers, onions, pickles and celery salt. There are even a few seasonal dogs named for Frank Sinatra and other legends of music.

Zach’s Shack
4611 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
503-233-4616
Online: zachsshack.com

What is your favorite hot dog in Portland? Let us know in the comments below!

— Maura O’Brien