Maybe those plump hotdogs and creamy scoops remind one of childhood, or maybe it's the friendly nature of the shop that just has that good ol' smalltown feel. Either way, one taste of a Hefty dog, and you'll be a pal of Pete's for life.Normally, it doesn't take much cajoling to convince me to go to town on a juicy, Chicago-style hot dog with all the fixins, followed quickly by a waffle cone piled high with chocolate ice cream. But if I ever needed any extra encouragement, it'd be from the jolly grin of a fuzzy, goofy, ice cream lovin' polar bear named Pete. Pete, his Polar Parlor & Dog House, and the two women behind it have been serving up scoops of ice cream and specialty hot dogs to families in the Briarcliff neighborhood for a little over a year, but it's the kind of place that just feels like it's been around forever. Maybe those plump hot dogs and creamy scoops remind one of childhood, or maybe it's the friendly, come-one-come-all nature of the shop that just has that good ol' smalltown feel. Probably both. Either way, one taste of a Hefty dog smothered in sport peppers, dijon mustard, and pickled veggies, and you'll be a pal of Pete for life. And we haven't even gotten to dessert yet.
Ask Cheryl, the co-owner of the independently-owned "mom 'n mom shop," what she thinks of her hot dogs and Patak sausages, and she'll be the first to assert that they truly are the best. Cheryl and Joanne spent over a year searching high and low for the perfect all-beef dog, an epic quest that sounds like the stuff of which my career dreams are made. (If anyone has any leads on openings in the Hot Dog-Hunting field, let's do lunch at Pete's and talk about it.) After a year of trying, they finally found the choice weenies that they currently offer grilled, steamed, or — yes — fried. And they have fun with all the seemingly endless forms a hot dog can take: their Specialty Dogs include an authentic Chicago dog with poppyseed bun, fresh tomato, and sport peppers, but there's also the Philly Dog, Mexican Dog, Hawaiian Dog, and of course the hometown hero Atlanta Dog, to keep things quite multicultural. All of that in addition to the sausages (think Polish, bratwurst, and andouille), any of which go well with sauteed peppers and onions. And about the "Polar" part of this Parlor? Feast your sugar-craving eyes on thirty-six flavors of ice cream, professionally made to the highest standards... and ready to be scooped, blizzard-ed, sundae'd, milk-shaked, or smoothie'd to your heart's desire. Black raspberry truffle, stellar coffee, dreamsicle, caramel caribou, chocolate cake, and lemon custard are just a few of the crowd favorites, along with twenty-eight flavors of Hawaiian Shave Ice (all of which can be made into a New Orleans-style snowball with ice cream in the center). If conventional childhood wisdom still holds true, the combination of a hot dog + a scoop of ice cream is the ultimate way to celebrate summer. We'll take a dawg and a Sundae, thankyouverymuch.
Regular Dog, Free with your Scoutmob discount
French Fries, $1.99
Onion Rings $2.69
Fried Pickles, $3.89
Brownie Sundae, $4.99
Banana Split, $5.99
Shave Ice, Reg. $2.89, Large $3.89
Daily, 12 p.m. - 8 p.m.