Photos Courtesy Vito Casale
By Kevin Canessa Jr.
Most hotdog lovers enjoy a good Sabrett. Or two. Or three or more. But there’s always something even better about eating a Sabrett when it comes from a hot dog truck. Enter Vito’s Hotdogs. Sure, they deliver the Sabretts. But it’s what they put on top of the hotdogs that make them so much more — and better — than just a basic Sabrett.
Owner Vito Casale says there’s a reason why his hotdogs should be rated better than anyone else’s in the area — the freshness of the ingredients. Too often, he says, hotdog venders used canned ingredients. Not him, though. Not by any means.
“Everything I use is top of the line,” Casale said. “I use the best Sabretts, the best buns, the best everything. When you use canned stuff, people know it. When you taste my dogs, you know the difference and a lot of it is because of the freshness of the ingredients that I use.”
And it’s more than just the freshness of the ingredients, too. It’s the little things people don’t often think of when it comes to hotdogs.
“When I was deciding what kind of mustard to use, I tried 13 different brands before I chose one,” Casale said. “We settled on a deli-style mustard, and yes, sometimes, this means people will pay a little more for my hotdogs, but in return, they’re getting better quality. I serve my customers like I’m serving my friends and family — just the best.”
Going into business
Casale and a business partner of his, prior to opening the truck, tried their hand at a deli business in Newark. When it didn’t work out — Casale says he didn’t pick the right location — he decided he wanted something new and outside the box.
With help from his brother, he decided on buying a truck for the hotdog business. So he got one at a great price out on Long Island. And in August, after three months of work with his uncle, Jimmy, the former potato chip truck was now ready for business. It never would have been possible without his uncle.
“I can’t even begin to tell you how much my uncle Jimmy had to do with my success,” Casale said. “I owe that man everything. And my fiancée, Nicole, who has stood by me the entire way.”
Of all the styles he sells, he says his pride and joy is the Shore Dog.
“They’re all great, but the Shore Dog [see below] is what we’re most proud of,” Casale said. “We really believe when people come to us for the first time, no matter what they order, they’re going to want more — and they’ll be coming back.”
Vito’s Hotdog truck is parked weekdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the intersection of Frank E. Rodgers Boulevard and Guyon Drive in Harrison. Find out more by visiting www.VitosHotDogs.com or by calling 732-773-9713. Like them on Facebook at www. Facebook.com/vitoshotdogs.
Vito’s Hotdogs menu:
Basic hotdogs with mustard and/or ketchup: $1.75.
Additional toppings for 50¢ each, including: relish, fire onions, sweet or raw onions, kraut, homemade chili, potatoes, cheese, sweet peppers, long-hot peppers, coleslaw.
The Ol’ Salty: sweet relish, crispy bacon, sea salt.
The Dom Dog: Chicago style.
The Dragon Dog: Asian mustard, fire onions, longhot pepper, habanero sauce, seeds.
The Shore Dog: Coleslaw, sriracha and Jersey tomato.
The Junk Yard Dog: Ask for details.