Nearly three weeks after selling 2325 Hot Dogs on July 4th – traditionally the busiest Hot Dog Day of the year – JJ’s Red Hots, the Charlotte, NC-based National award winning Hot Dog and Sausage brand, thinks Americans can eat even more on National Hot Dog Day, Thursday, July 23.
And just in time for the fun holiday, JJ’s has released its Top Ten Trending toppings based on the past year’s menu analysis. Here you won’t traditional favorites like mustard, onions, chili or slaw and most especially ketchup. What you will find are the upscale, on-trend, new foodie favorites that, when available, guests will take a chance on more often than not. The Top Ten Trending Hot Dog Toppings, in order of recent popularity and their respective percent increases in the past year are:
Smoked Tomato Jam
Blue Cheese Pimento
Roasted Poblano Chiles
“Hot Dogs have been around since the early 1800s; In fact, Sahlen’s, our Buffalo, NY-based Hot Dog purveyor was founded in 1869, when Ulysses S. Grant was President,” said Jonathan Luther, JJ’s owner and founder. “But here is the new story: Americans are finally realizing a Hot Dog’s full potential and are getting more and more adventurous with their palate. Hot Dogs may start as a blank canvas but there are so many new and exciting flavors that complement our smoky, crispy, char-grilled pork and beef link nestled in a toasty Martin’s potato roll. C’mon, let’s get weird, America!”
Charlotte-based JJ’s continued to raise national eyebrows recently when it made Fast Casual’s Top 100 Movers & Shakers list for the second year in a row. JJ’s was the smallest and youngest brand on the Fast Casual list, the only Charlotte-based brand and the only Hot Dog/Sausage concept to make the cut, jumping 7 spots in the prestigious list all the way to #36, a boost certainly attributable to the brand taking chances and giving its guests what they want, even when it’s not always something they expect.
“What we have seen since we opened our doors three years ago is that status quo is just not cool or fun. If ketchup is your go-to, have at it but you’d really be missing the point of JJ’s,” said Brandy Newton, director of marketing and brand development. “The true spirit of JJ’s is letting us stretch your imagination with new flavors and recipes not yet imagined. And we have lots and lots of fun doing it.”
Luther says JJ’s still likes the classics though and will offer a specially-priced ($2) American Chili Cheese Coney featuring house-made chili, finely shredded Jack and Cheddar and diced sweet onion. JJ’s has two Charlotte locations, in Dilworth and Ballantyne.JJ’s Red Hots is the premier purveyor of “hand-crafted” char-grilled hot dogs and sausages with two locations and several portable vehicles in the Charlotte metropolitan area. The restaurant concept is built on solid, hardworking values and is modeled after venerable establishments like Ted’s in Buffalo, NY, Gene and Jude’s in Chicago, and many others. Still, JJ’s is a true American original featuring house-made, scratch prepared sides and toppings served alongside time tested, revered American brands like Tabasco, Weber’s Mustard, Martin’s Rolls, Coca-Cola and Mt. Olive Pickles. Perhaps most proudly, JJ’s Red Hots serves smokehouse hot dogs from Sahlen’s Meat Packing Company in Buffalo, NY. Sahlen’s is a 146 year-old company that remains family owned and operated, and makes, in our opinion, the best hot dogs in the world.