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Mel's Hot Dogs

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4136 E Busch Blvd, Tampa, FL 33617
813-985-8000
Website
Today
11:00 am - 8:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Hours:
Mon - Sat 11:00 am - 8:00 pm

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 84 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 36
    Excellent
  • 24
    Very good
  • 10
    Average
  • 9
    Poor
  • 5
    Terrible
Rating summary
  • Food
    4 of 5 stars
    Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    4 of 5 stars
Most recent review
Best Hot Dog south of Chicago

moved to Florida from Chicago five months ago. Finally found a Vienna Beef Hot Dog joint worthy of serving a Chicago style hot dog. Best I've had in a long time. Fries were very tasty and the staff and service were friendly and excellent. Well worth the drive if you are in the Tampa metro area!

5 of 5 starsReviewed February 14, 2015
HSR57
,
Riverview, Florida
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84 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Riverview, Florida
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2015

moved to Florida from Chicago five months ago. Finally found a Vienna Beef Hot Dog joint worthy of serving a Chicago style hot dog. Best I've had in a long time. Fries were very tasty and the staff and service were friendly and excellent. Well worth the drive if you are in the Tampa metro area!

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thanks, HSR57. It's always a pleasure to have a fellow Chicagoan drop in for a taste of home! Now that you've found us, we hope to see you around often. More 

Toms River, New Jersey
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2015

The Hot Dogs were good. My friend thought the casings were too tough but I liked it and they also had hot dogs with no casings. The Hot dog car outside is cool and the inside is enjoyable showing a lot of memorabilia from the early days of this location.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thank you so much for your review, Steven. Some people do find the natural casings - indicative of a high-quality hot dog - a little tough, especially if they are use to the cellulose casings of cheaper hot dogs. I appreciate you pointing out that out Might Mel hot dogs are skinless, which is a great alternative if the natural... More 

Tampa
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2015

I used to travel through Chicago when I was a kid, and one of my favorite memories was having a Chicago Hot Dog. There used to be a vendor on almost every corner, and you could spot the neon green relish a block away. Back in the 70s my band mate Fred was from Chicago, and we used to stop... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thanks, Jim! Glad to hear we are still living up to your great memories. Always a pleasure to have a long-time customer come in and see us. We hope to see you again soon! More 

Roswell, GA
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
20 restaurant reviews
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2015

Nice dogs. Slaw was way better than I expected & almost like my dad (from Chicago) used to make. It was a little more expensive than I thought it would be, but the service was friendly & they threw in a bumper sticker to add to our collection.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thanks for stopping in, WeGoSlow! Glad to hear you enjoyed our homemade coleslaw, and thanks for sharing the great photo. Hope to see you in again sometime. More 

Alexandria, Virginia
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2015

I worked down the road from Mel's in the 1980s and frequented Mel's because of the great dogs and great service. Jump forward many years and career moves later... I stopped by Mel's recently after doing a VIP tour at Busch Gardens (which, BTW, was terrific). Not much has changed at Mel's--fortunately--and I felt right at home. The dogs and... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Glad to hear we are still delivering the same great experience you remember after all these years! Thanks for stopping in again while you were in town. More 

Atlanta, Georgia
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 26, 2014

Average... The Chicago dog was what I had. Also, fries and baked beans. The fries were hit and there was a small container for baked beans.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thanks for stopping in, evanro. Although we are known for our authentic Chicago-style hot dogs, we occasionally run into someone that doesn't find that particular dog to their liking. Perhaps next time you stop in, you could give our Mel's May Way - served with the topping of you choice - a try. That way you can be sure to... More 

Tampa, Florida
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2014

Nothing to dislike at Mel's friendly staff, clean and choices galore! Love everything but the green relish, probably the color then the taste. Great fries and cole slaw.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thank you so much for coming and eating at Mel's, travelertampa1. You'll have to come in again more often, so we can get you used to our authentic, Chicago-style, bright-green relish! More 

Top Contributor
125 reviews 125 reviews
82 restaurant reviews
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2014

If you like hot dogs, you'll love Mel's. A great selection of hot dogs, sausages and brats, along with burgers and chicken, but if you go, you have to have a dog. The cheddar bacon dog is my favorite, but they're all great. It's a quick and casual place, with friendly service. Perfect place for a quick and delicious lunch.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thank you so much for stopping in, ERFSU82, and sharing your favorite menu item with us on your review! More 

2 reviews
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2014

We were here on a Saturday in September, before the snowbird rush. It was midway between lunch and dinner hours. Despite not having many customers, every empty table was filthy. The staff appeared slow and slovenly. That aside, we were there for the food. The bread was fine, but the beef looked and tasted like the "italian" roast beef from... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thank you for your review, Ralph. I regret that we did not offer you the great experience that we are known for. From your description, it sounds like you possibly arrived shortly after our lunch rush, and our staff had not yet had the chance to reset the dining room. Regarding the Vienna Beef products, being a former Chicagoan, myself,... More 

St. Petersburg, Florida
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2014

Well I finally made it to Mels hot dogs,and God only knows that I should have stayed away. The first thing you notice is the lack of parking. So you finally get parked and you go inside and all of a sudden the high prices of a hot dog jumps at you. The crazy thing about it you pay for... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Mel L, Owner at Mel's Hot Dogs, responded to this review

Thank you for stopping in and trying us out, srmwrw. I understand that some people may stop in expecting a cheap hot dog joint, but the mission of Mel's, since we opened over 40 years ago, has always been to bring high-quality, Chicago-style hot dogs to Tampa. People that are not as familiar with the premium Vienna Beef products we... More 

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Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 4136 E Busch Blvd, Tampa, FL 33617
  • Location: United States  >  Florida (FL)  >  Tampa
  • Phone Number: 813-985-8000

Price and Cuisine

  • Average Prices: USD 0 - 20
Open Hours
Monday
11:00 am - 8:00 pm
Tuesday
11:00 am - 8:00 pm
Wednesday
11:00 am - 8:00 pm
Thursday
11:00 am - 8:00 pm
Friday
11:00 am - 8:00 pm
Saturday
11:00 am - 8:00 pm

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Mel's Hot Dogs staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?