Perry, the founder of New York Street Food, brings you his latest review on New York City street food.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever had on a hot dog? Ours is fried calamari, which we recently had at the Coney Shack truck.

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The original Coney Shack is a food stand right off the Coney Island Boardwalk, and last year they added a food truck that travels around NYC. We tried them last summer, enjoyed it, and decided on a return visit recently.

Similar to other street food vendors, Coney Shack has Asian-inspired tacos, burritos, quesadillas and rice bowls with interesting ingredients such as caramelized pork, lemongrass chicken, crunchy tofu and satay mushroom on the menu. But in our opinion, what sets Coney Shack apart are the hot dogs, which cost $6 each.

$6 for a hot dog sounds like a lot, but here they are topped with beer-battered fish, lemongrass chicken or what we ate, one with fried calamari and one with caramelized pork. Of course, there are other sauces and toppings besides the proteins we named, and the hot dogs themselves are all-beef, so $6 isn’t crazy for a Coney Shack dog.

(credit: Perry R.)

(credit: Perry R.)

The Calamari Dog is a beef hot dog topped with crispy calamari, pico de gallo, red onions, lemongrass aioli and sweet chili spicy mayo. This is definitely the strangest pairing we’ve seen with a hot dog.

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The calamari was actually crispy as advertised, and spicy too from the sweet chili mayo. The flavor of the hot dog came through just fine, and the red onions were important to the overall mix as well.

The Mach Dog is named after the founder of Coney Shack. It’s also a beef hot dog, topped with caramelized glazed pork, sweet chili spicy mayo, ketchup, sriracha, beer battered onion rings, melted 5 Mexican cheese blend and scallions.

It sounds like there’s a ton of garbage on the dog, but these ingredients actually made sense together. Too many street vendors serve “caramelized” food that isn’t actually caramelized. Here the pork was visibly caramelized, which added lots of flavor.

Thin, stringy onion rings, melted cheese and scallions made up the rest of the toppings, which all worked well with the hot dog and caramelized pork. The chili mayo, sriracha and ketchup completed the Mach Dog with a sweet and spicy finish.

At first glance, the hot dogs at Coney Shack may appear strange, but upon sampling, they are delicious. If you just can’t brig yourself to eat such weird hot dogs, then we suggest getting these types of ingredients in a taco, burrito, quesadilla or rice bowl, which are all available.

You can find the Coney Shack truck on Twitter here and on Facebook here. If you’re actually in Coney Island, you can visit the Coney Shack at 2875 West 8th St, 1/2 block from the NY Aquarium, which is always a fun place to visit.

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(credit: Perry R.)

(credit: Perry R.)