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Dogs run wild in Buffalo

From Germans who made the best wurst in town to Greeks who made family fortunes one hot dog at a time, Buffalo was built on meaty links. Variations have historically been limited to well-defined niches. Sauerkraut, spicy tomato relish or the cinnamon-scented beef chili that somehow got the title “Texas hot” sauce were as fancy as it got. But there’s a new dog in town. It might be made of duck and topped with foie gras. Or it might not be meat at all. Explore the brave new world of Buffalo’s hand-held satisfactions.

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GALLERY: Old (hot) dogs, new tricks

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Don’t be scared by fried oysters, or blueberry sauce. Bookended by time-honored favorites Ted’s and Louie’s, here are a dozen dogs offering adventure in the palm of your hand. Frankly speaking, they’re delicious.

Foot-long

Ted’s Hot Dogs, multiple locations

The extended-eating version of Ted’s classic charcoal-grilled Sahlen’s dog, with ketchup, mustard, relish, onion ($3.89).

BLT dog

Frank Gourmet Dogs food truck, findfranknow.com

Eaters track down food truck for custom link topped with bacon, lettuce, sliced tomato and bacon aioli ($5.50).

NOLA

Dog é Style, 128 Genesee St., 844-5900

Nod to New Orleans holds a custom Wardynski’s link with sliced ham off the bone, provolone, olive salad, fried oysters ($6).

Banh mi dog

Dog é Style, 128 Genesee St., 844-5900

Homage to classic Vietnamese sub has Saigon-style sweet sausage with pickled carrot radish and chile, cilantro, spicy mayonnaise ($5).

Greek dog

Dog é Style, 128 Genesee St., 844-5900

Link made with lamb gets a boost from tzatziki yogurt sauce, chopped tomato and onion, black olives, crumbled feta cheese and Greek dressing ($6).

Violet Beauregarde

Frank Gourmet Dogs food truck, findfranknow.com

All-beef custom link gets turned into a Wonka-esque flight of fancy with blueberry barbecue sauce, shredded cheddar cheese and crispy fried onions ($5.50).

Beef on Weck dog

Dog é Style, 128 Genesee St., 844-5900

Inspired by classic Buffalo sandwich, jumbo all-beef Wardynski’s dog is topped with horseradish mayonnaise and dill pickle on a caraway seed roll ($5).

Bacon cheese dog

Red’s Hot Dogs, 634 Main St., East Aurora, 652-2222

A guy named Redlinski is selling custom links in standard and unusual styles in East Aurora, including this one, wrapped in bacon before grilling and smothered in cheddar cheese sauce ($5.75).

Fat Duck

Dog é Style, 128 Genesee St., 844-5900

The black-tie ball of Buffalo hot dogs features a link made with duck. It’s topped with caramelized onions, truffled mayonnaise, sautéed mushrooms, fresh thyme – and chips of foie gras ($12).

Texas Hot

Louie’s Texas Red Hots, multiple locations

Covering a hot dog with beef chili flavored like Greek meat sauce was probably not invented in Buffalo, but it flowered into competing establishments here, with Louie’s the biggest of all ($2.29).

Bunny Dog

Old Man River, 375 Niagara St, Tonawanda, 693-5558

Vegetarians step up to this Tonawanda hot dog stand, where a carrot – marinated, steamed and grilled, then topped to order – is tasty enough for carnivores to choose it, too ($3.19).

Hot Hot

Red’s Hot Dogs, 634 Main St., East Aurora, 652-2222

The closest to spicy Buffalo wings in the Buffalo dog pound might be this character, which boasts jalapeño peppers, Frank’s hot sauce, hot red relish and spicy mustard ($3.50).