No ,  Not the  4-Legged Dogs   ---- These are the BEST HOT DOGS in the WORLD !

And they are only 30 minutes from the Lehigh Valley
Folks travel miles for the opportunity to taste these incredible Hot Dogs and the Chilled Birch Beer in Frosted Mugs.  So the next time you don't have anywhere to go on a Saturday or Sunday - hop in your Vette and take a ride over to this quaint picturesque roadside gem called -  HOT DOG JOHNNY'S !  - - - Bring your camera !

Hot Dog Johnny's is one of those spots that hot dog fans talk about in a fevered pitch. Today their Hot Dog Johnny's T-shirts are shipped round the globe, including to fans in China. Their following has drawn the attention of USA Today and even Cosmopolitan magazine.

But at the core of the Hot Dog Johnny's tradition is one lady who's been making hot dogs as long as she can remember. Owner Pat Fotopoulos, says her father John Kovalsky got out of the coal mines and into the hot dog business in 1944. Two years later, the family business outgrew its original shack and moved down the road to their current location.

Fotopoulos says part of their success lies in the fact that the stand is a convenient stopping point between Scranton and New Jersey. Add in the fact that they're open nearly 50 weeks a year (with outdoor coverings in the winter) and you can see why they have such a large fan base.    This place is more than a lunch spot. It's an experience.

Legend has it Bob Hope used to stop on his way out Route 46 to the Poconos resorts. Out back along the creek, you can still see the original stand that stood just up the road in 1944. And the shaded picnic area and grounds with an old-style play area for the tykes are immaculate.

The dogs? You shouldn't be disappointed. They're deep fried and hearty. Two with everything fill you up. The onions were heaped on and the pickle spear was fresh. This is the style of dog that put this region on the map.

On a steamy day ,  frozen mugs of birch beer will go down cold and smooth. If you're a first-timer, you have to try the fries. They're well-done and crispy and put any fast food joint's potatoes to shame.

Mention Johnny's and talk invariably turns to buttermilk. They have it in plentiful supply, by the mug or jug. But it's a taste that you have to acquire.

This is the kind of place where I wouldn't want to eat on the run. Make the drive into central Warren County, plop down in the shade and soak in the environment. It'll take you back to simpler times when the hustle and bustle wasn't as extreme and a drive into the country meant more than just passing through.

At Johnny's the specially-made hot dogs are deep-fried in peanut oil before getting dressed with the regular toppings -- mustard, onions and pickle.

If you want to go a step further and try the Route 80 (every topping on the menu) you'll get a dog with mustard, onions, pickle, ketchup and relish.

The dogs were cooked well and they weren't skimpy with the mustard or onions. Both were laid on like they were going out of style, as opposed to some of the food stands where the mustard was a mere stripe at the bottom of the roll.

The pickle adds a nice sour bite to the hot dog -- It wasn't cut into slivers like done at some places - a nice slice .

So the next time you're looking for a nice ride and some GREAT HOT DOGS - stop by Johnny's !


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