— -- The hot dog is a staple of American summer. As the country celebrates the Fourth of July this weekend, the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council estimates Americans will eat approximately 150 million hot dogs.
Most people are used to having a hot dog served with mustard or ketchup. But one New York City restaurant is taking hot dogs to the next level. At $16 apiece, The NoMad Bar is giving this American classic a high-end twist.
“Our idea here was kind of to take a riff off traditional American bar food and really make it our own,” said Executive Chef of The NoMad, James Kent.
The hot dog is named the “Humm Dog” after its creator, chef/co-owner of The NoMad, Daniel Humm. The award-winning chef is a restaurateur whose first eatery, Eleven Madison Park, earned him numerous accolades, including three Michelin stars.
Since its opening, The NoMad has received three stars from the New York Times, one Michelin Star and a James Beard Foundation Award.
“We have been open at The NoMad Bar for a year and we have sold over 18,000 Humm Dogs," Kent said.
He explained that the challenge to serving classic food on the menu is the customer already has an expectation of what the dish should taste like.
“I think our goal is to really exceed that and show them why this is special and elegant and delicious," he said.
So what makes The NoMad’s dog so unique?
Kent starts by wrapping a kosher beef hot dog in bacon and lets it crisp up in the deep fryer. The hot dog is then tucked into a buttery, toasted brioche bun that has been filled with truffle mayonnaise. A layer of Gruyere cheese is added to the top and it is popped in the oven to toast. The dog emerges with a layer of melted Gruyere and the dish is topped with truffle celery relish and a sprinkle of celery leaves.
This extreme attention to detail is what separates ‘The Humm Dog’ apart from your average ballpark frank.
And, Kent said, that’s the point -- to give the customer food that makes them nostalgic, but give it to them in a whole new way.
“It’s really what we do often with our food. We try to find unique ways to bring you back," he said.