Best of Denver

The Ten Best Hot Dog Joints in Denver

It's Splitsville at Harley's.
It's Splitsville at Harley's. Harley's/Facebook
It's a dog-eat-dog world out there, so you'd better be the one doing the eating. Eating a hot dog, that is — whether slathered in mustard, piled with relish, onions and sauerkraut, or dressed up in something fancy. Since July is National Hot Dog Month, we're serving up our selection of the ten best hot dog joints in town.

click to enlarge A Louisiana red hot dressed up Sonoran style at Biker Jim's. - MARK ANTONATION
A Louisiana red hot dressed up Sonoran style at Biker Jim's.
Mark Antonation
Biker Jim's Gourmet Dogs
2148 Larimer Street

Biker Jim's Gourmet Dogs has been hawking fat sausages from a handful of carts for years now, but these days, you don't need to stand out in the street for a hefty helping of Jim Pittenger's sausage magic. The brick-and-mortar eatery is convenient for pre- or post-ballgame snacks, as well as for Larimer Street partying until last call. Most of the dogs — including exotic links like boar, elk and veal, and an especially rare specimen, the downright yummy vegan dog — come piled high with caramelized onions and decorated with a ribbon of cream cheese, though there's a long roster of other topping choices. If the Biker Jim's headquarters isn't close enough to the action for you, just grab a Rockies ticket and enjoy a gourmet dog from one of two Biker Jim's counters inside Coors Field.

Billy's Gourmet Hot Dogs
2445 Larimer Street

Hot dogs are high art at Billy's Gourmet Hot Dogs, which brings a taste of Chicago to the Ballpark neighborhood. Billy's serves all-beef Vienna dogs, homemade sausage, veggie and even salmon dogs spruced up with an array of fixings, from traditional kraut, onions and mustard to hot peppers, cheeses and chili. One of many house specials, the Tijuana Dog combines avocado, pico de gallo and sour cream in a yummy, satisfying treat. A gluttonous selection of french fries — topped with blue cheese, among other things — rounds out the menu. With a large patio, friendly counter staff and daily beer specials, Billy's draws crowds at lunch, dinner and game time.

Chicago Mike's Beef & Dogs
11405 East Briarwood Avenue, Englewood
We love the Italian beef sandwiches at Mike's, but the hot dogs also satisfy our Chicago longings when we're down in Englewood. Chicago Mike's got its start a couple of miles away nearly twenty years ago before moving to its current location — and fans from the office parks and neighborhoods nearby followed the smell of hot dogs to keep the place going strong. Since this is a Windy City spot, your best option is the all-beef Vienna dog dressed up with a pickle, sport peppers, nuclear-green relish and a dash of celery salt.

click to enlarge The Sooo Cali dog at the Dog Haus. - PUNCTUATED/FLICKR
The Sooo Cali dog at the Dog Haus.
Dog Haus
12023 East Arapahoe Road, Centennial

This small California chain got its start in 2010 before setting its sights on Centennial, which has become a prime landing zone for hot dog enthusiasts. The restaurant prides itself on its own proprietary dogs and sausages, all served on King's Hawaiian rolls. Try one of the bacon-wrapped wieners or go for something a little more exotic, like the Thai currywurst with peanut sauce: It's a hot dog in the hottest sense.

click to enlarge It's Splitsville at Harley's. - HARLEY'S/FACEBOOK
It's Splitsville at Harley's.
Harley's: A Hot Dog Revolution
1500 West Littleton Boulevard, Littleton
Harley's does something a little different with its dogs: The links are split open and grilled flat-side down and then toppings are loaded on, so you get more meatiness with every bite. Choose from a 100 percent kosher beef dog, spicy andouille sausage or several other flavorful links, then pile on the toppings from a list of more than a dozen house specials, from traditional Chicago-style to the straight-up bizarre Eddie Spaghetti.

Keep reading for more hot dog joints.

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.