Hot dog! Yes, it is possible to eat 69 hot dogs in 10 minutes. Every year, Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest takes place on Coney Island. Sadly we missed the competition itself, but we did visit Coney Island to admire the results.
So excited are Nathan’s that they have a digital countdown going until the next competition in July 2014. Joey “Jaws” Chestnut won this year and is a serial winner of this competition. I only found out about it because when I bought frankfurters in my lovely local butchers they said “they’re the best, Coney Island Franks”. They then proceeded to tell me, with great glee and pride, about the annual hot dog eating competition held on Coney Island and how I should go. I tried to persuade R, but he was having none of it. But today we got here, R queued for 20 minutes to watch inefficient service eventually give him three ‘franks’ and a pretzel dog! Yes, a pretzel dog – it tastes good, just looks like a slightly loose pastry jacket twirled around a pink sausage.
Coney Island is of course not just about scoffing hot dogs. It’s home to a huge fun fair called Luna Park that’s well worth a day out from the closely packed streets of Manhattan. Set off from the board walk it’s a mix of new and old rides, it could be a UK seaside resort but without the fish and chips and not a seagull in sight.
Oh, and the end of the Q line is a very long way from our part of Manhattan, especially on the local line, best bring a snack, but not too much as you’ll not want your hot dog.