You can't say that Nogales Hot Dogs is a hidden gem among eateries in Phoenix, Arizona. Nor can you can it's one of the city's best kept secrets. After all, Nogales Hot Dogs is listed on TripAdvisor's website and it is consistently ranked among the leading purveyors of hot dogs in all of Arizona. Not bad for a Mexican hot dog stand that sets up shop nightly at 7 p.m. at the southwest corner of 20th street and Indian School Road, off Route 51, in East Phoenix. With a handful of folding tables and chairs and an awning. It is owner Pablo Perez's authentic Mexican food truck and the most popular Sonoran hot dog stand in town. Cash only. What is a Sonoran hot dog? How does it compare to a Chicago-style hot dog or Nathan's New York hot dog or a Detroit Coney? After reading about Nogales hot dogs on the internet, my wife and I had to find out what the hubbub was all about. A real Sonoran hot dog, which originated in Sonora, Mexico, about 50 years ago, is mesquite smoked and wrapped in bacon and smothered with pinto beans, onions, tomatoes and mayo and stuffed in a steamed bun. Other trimmings can include cheese guacamole salsa, jalapeno salsa and mushrooms. Forget mustard and relish. It's a bit spicy and an acquired taste. But Sonoran hot dogs are as good as advertised. I'm told there are about 200 Sonoran hot dog stands in Tucson. And we're headed in that direction.
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