At IKEA the other day, I got a couple of dogs because I was starving. They cost 50 cents each, and were better than you'd expect for the price. The sausage was above average, but the buns--eh. What they really did was put me in the mood for a great hot dog.
So I went to Wiener Works on Madison, which has gotten some props from folks I know and always seems busy at lunchtime. Got the regular dog with mustard, tomato, and onion, a tiny fries, and a drink. The fries were great, made from fresh potatoes hand-cut as needed (btw, the "tiny" designation is a serious misnomer). The sausage was outstanding--a casing with a nice snap to it, filled with meat that was spiced just right. The onions were red and sweet, and the tomatoes were okay, if a bit flavorless. But the bun? A slightly stale sourdough sandwich roll that was so large the sausage got lost in it. You seriously couldn't taste the meat for all the bread in this dog. I ended up deconstructing it: tearing off moist bits of bread, piling toppings on them, and stuffing them into my mouth with bites of sausage. My cuticles will be mustard-colored for a week. Oh, and the price for a dog, fries, and a medium soda? $10, less a little loose change. Yikes.
Which leads to the question: where can you get a great hot dog on a great bun for a reasonable price in the Sacramento area? Quality sides and toppings would be nice, too, but they should augment the dog, not cover up the fact that it's mediocre. Anybody?