Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Anatomy of a Good Hot Dog at Gray's Papaya?

Gray's Papaya
2090 Broadway
New York, NY 10023

Everyone loves a bargain, especially in very expensive New York City. After going through the Met and a quick walk through Central Park we worked up quite an appetite. We had been in the city for a few days and I had yet to have a great hot dog. So I was very excited to try Gray's Papaya.

Gray's has been open since 1973. Started by a former partner of Papaya King, Gray's has left the shadow of its competitors and been named best hot dog in the big apple, been featured on numerous TV shows, and become part of pop culture by being featured in a plethora of movies. Enough of the buzz about Gray's, let's checkout the food.

At Gray's it is all about the Reccesion Special. The special includes two hot dogs and a 14 ounce drink all for the incredible price of $4.45. A real steal in New York. We got two of the specials. The first two frankfurters we got had sauerkraut on them. The kraut was not of the highest quality, but it was definitely better than the weird onion mixture that we got on the second special. The sweet onions were not very good, and I ended up taking most of it off of the dogs. The frankfurter was a little salty, but had a very good snap to it.

Naturally at a place that has papaya in the name, they have a Papaya Drink. Not only do they have papaya, but they have other fruit juices as well, including banana, pina colada and pineapple. The papaya drink reminded me of a drink I used to have at Orange Julius. A little frothy, and a great neutralizer to the saltiness of the hot dog.

I will admit that this was not the best hot dog I have ever had. I did however like it, and I thought they were well worth the money. My parents would not agree with this statement. My Dad would not even finish his hot dog. He found this place to be the worst restaurant on my list. They might have been put off by the eating while standing up situation here, or maybe they really did not like the taste of the frankfurter. The menu here is very limited, but I am sure that is how they can keep selling their products at such low prices. Everyone should at least say they have been here at least one time to experience true New York.

Out of five ropes, (because the stem and bark of the papaya tree is used in rope production), five being best to zero being worst, Gray's Papaya get 2.5 ropes.

Gray's Papaya does not have a web site, but you can find more information about them here:

Gray's Papaya (UWS) on Urbanspoon

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  1. OK, so 2.5 rating? I think you're generous here, because I had everything on the hot dogs and that was a mistake.... Pace taco sauce on a kraut dog, who'd of thunk it? Who'd eat it? Not me. I'm not scoffing at Pace, I like as much as the next guy, but on my tacos, not on my hot dog!
    Your dad would give this 1.5 stars, ropes or whatever... no more! - Dad

  2. Anonymous - I took into account the value for your money here, hence the 2.5 rating. Sometimes less is more when it comes to food, so when you get everything on a hot dog, the safe bet is sometimes sticking with the basics. Thanks for your opinion and your comment.