The New York tourist hot spot Serendipity 3 has made it to the Guinness World Records for the world’s most expensive hot dog: a rare truffle-slathered sausage priced at $69.
"It's a hot dog made specially for Serendipity. It's our famous foot-long hot dog," says Serendipity spokesman Joe Calderone. The franks are a regular menu item at the restaurant and they're made by a New York City butcher, Calderone explains, but what makes these pricier ones stand out are the toppings.
The dog is grilled in white truffle oil, and it’s served in a homemade pretzel-style bun that’s brushed with truffle butter, Calderone explains. But thankfully that’s not all you get for $69. This hot dog is topped with duck foie gras, caramelized Vidalia onions, black truffle Dijon mustard and homemade heirloom tomato ketchup.
Calderone maintains that the extravagant menu item is, at its core, still a hot dog, and it's listed as such on the restaurant's menu instead of as a fanciers-sounding sausage. After all, it was created July 23 in celebration of National Hot Dog Day, Calderone says. July is National Hot Dog Month.
To break it down, a hot dog is considered a kind of sausage, but not all sausages are hot dogs, according to sausage experts.
“Hot dogs are pre-cooked, whereas fresh sausage usually is not. The meat in fresh sausage is more coarse, where in hot dogs it is emulsified before being put in the casings and cooked,” says Janet Riley, president of the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council.
But Serendipity has managed to make a simple American staple into an outrageously expensive—not to mention massive—meal.
“That’s a pretty amazing price tag for the modest and unpretentious hot dog,” Riley says.