Some friends of mine from work enjoy a good West Virginia style hot dog (that’s chili, slaw, onions and mustard if you don’t know) every now and again. Probably more now than again if you must know. A few months back, the West Virgnia Hot Dog Blog mentioned a new place in St. Albans called Sammy’s Chili Dogs and we had been discussing a trip ever since. We finally made it a few weeks ago.
First, you have to find the rather ironically named Main Street in St. Albans and then head west out of town. At the intersection of the Coal River Road and Main Street you will find:
It’s a no-frills place, with a simple and straight-forward menu: hot dogs and barbeque sandwiches. No fries, no hamburgers. They do serve beer and are apparently open late if you need something to quiet your stomache after doing whatever legal activity you were doing past midnight. But there is something to say about having a simple menu when you do it right. And Sammy’s does their menu right.
Hot Dogs are served with the traditional toppings. You have a choice of mild or spicy chili (the spicy isn’t blastingly hot, but has a nice kick). You can do regular or English buns (grilled New England style buns). The barbeque is a classic West Virginia style pulled pork that has been steeping in a smokey barbeque sauce; they do serve it in a hot dog bun, which has to make ordering easier. Here is the one dog, one bbq special:
The hot dog is in the back. Six bucks gets you that, plus chips and a drink. Two dogs is five dollars. Like I said, the barbeque is good, but nothing extraordinary. The hot dog is one of the best in the area. The creamy, sweet slaw and spicy chili match-up well together. The dog tastes like a good, quality dog that would be okay on its own or with just mustard. No dog tastes good with only ketchup, in case you were wondering.
In short, Sammy’s serves up quality WV-style dogs at a very good price. Service is quick enough (another value of the uncomplicated menu) that you can get there and back from Charleston in a lunch hour.