Schilo's - Twilight of the Hot Dog Gods?
Schilo's is not in Houston, and, though I like the service and the feel of the joint a lot, I've never thought they had particuarly memorable food.
But I was in San Antonio the other day for a short deposition, and I stopped into Schilo's for a quick lunch.
I ordered the "Krautdog."
When it arrived, I said, "Whoa."
The waitress asked, nervously, if everything was okay.
"Uh-huh," I murmured, transfixed by the double frankfurter blanketed with fragrant, delicate sauerkraut. "Am good."
The hot dogs were butterflied and a deep red color. The smell coming from them was just...delicious. I thought to myself, "No way is this going to taste as good as it looks. Or as good as it smells."
But then it was BETTER. It was outrageous. It was the most German-tasting hot dog I've had outside of Der Fatherland. Much of my seventh-grade German came back to me. My grandmother, Ida Kiesewetter, seemed to call my name. When I closed my eyes, I saw edelweiss.
Then I felt guilty. I'm very, very snotty about hot dogs. I have a carefully-constructed personal hierarchy of frankfurters (crowned, obviously, by the best hot dog in the world: Rutt's Hut) and I was not expecting to have to rearrange it when I stopped into Schilo's for a quick lunch. Everything is now disarray and confusion. Gray's Papaya may have been bumped to fourth. Further research must be done to see if this was a fluke; maybe I was hungrier than I thought? More on this later.