Thursday, July 31, 2014


Never in my wildest dreams could I have envisioned taking a 100 mile round trip car ride for a freakin' hot dog, but today my bride and I did just that. It wasn't just a hot dog, it was a New Jersey kind of ripper that lured us to Rippers Roadstand, 5967 Factory Shops Blvd. in Ellenton, Florida.

So, what is a ripper you might be wondering? If you have to wonder then you probably haven't really been to New Jersey, or you missed the Travel Channel program a few years ago. Well, a ripper is the term for a hot dog that is deep fried in oil until the casing bursts, or "rips".

I have ripped a few dogs in my home deep fryer and they turned out quite well, but I was curious to see what real live Jersey boys could do. Let me tell you right now that they do just fine.

The Belle and I bellied up to the order counter and perused the overhead menu board.

We ordered two beers, a side of really tasty fries, and two marvelous rippers. I chose the Barkin' Pig Ripper. This is the classic Jersey hot dog with the Rippers famous “Jersey bacon kraut”. The counter lady asked what I wanted on my Barkin' Pig. I asked what she recommended and she said the spicy mustard is the most popular, so that is what I got.

That dog was spectacular: crispy on the outside, juicy and tender on the inside with a perfect snap when bitten. That bacon kraut topping was worth a trip to Jersey, or Ellenton, in this case.

My beautiful bride went with the Texas Dog: spicy chili, mustard and freshly chopped onions. Judging from the chili that she had from ear to ear, I can only assume that the Belle was in ripper heaven.

If Rippers had a Roadstand in Tampa, I could see many repeat Oracle visits. Those rippers were worth the drive.

Two rippers, an order of fries, and a couple beers set us back a whole $16.20. We also dropped a handful of change in the tip jar.

Rippers Roadstand on Urbanspoon


  1. Oh, my goodness. I'm firing up the convertible. Road trip to Rippers on the horizon. We make the trip over the Bridge to visit Chumlee's in Ellenton for the burger or the wings, now we can add Rippers as a lunch spot. Bacon kraut!!! You have identified the kryptonite to Fred's aversion to long drives. He will always go on a trip over the Skyway!

    1. Hi Tina,

      That road trip to Rippers was so worth it. My ripper with the bacon kraut was better than sex...almost. Well, maybe not even close, but holy moly it was good. Say hi to Fred for us, and you guys have a ripper good trip.

  2. Replies
    1. Yes you do, Sweet Polly, yes you do! I never imagined how incomplete my life was until I had me one of them there Barkin' Pig Rippers. Bacon kraut and a ripper...I swoon.