Nick's Nest Hot Dogs is undeniably the greatest hot dog i have ever eaten, and is ranked one of the best in Massachusetts. This little operation, which started off as a tiny stand cart in Holyoke, MA, has been family owned since it was started in 1921 by this guy named Nick Malfas. It's definitely a local tradition, and the people who know about it will always remember it.

In 1971 they celebrated their 75th anniversary by selling the hot dogs for their original price. (I read this on a little plaque they had in their stand)... selling out in a few hours at that price. The house of the owners is right behind the place, and that is quite a piece of history too.

Inside is quite a throwback to the past. All of the original equipment, stools, and even the mechanical band is all still intact and highly polished and ready to serve customers with their great hot dogs, as they have been doing with their secret method for years. The service and the people there are excellent. They even have a old-fashioned pull down cord to open the door for you from the counter. As a child i was fascinated by this concept whenever my grandmother took me there. There is just this atmopshere that I have yet to see in any place else. Its quite a simple eatery, as far as that metric is concerned. Just sit down, order a hot dog with everything (everything as anyone who's anyone knows does not include ketchup) with a chocolate milk. Drop a few quarters in the machine and play a random tune on the mechanical band, just for the fun of watching them play.

I still tried to go there for lunch now and again when i could. But my grandmother is older and can't drive, hot dogs are a little more expensive than in 1921, and life has lost a little bit of its charm. I've since moved out of that town, but it's one of the memories i've kept of that place... and i hope to go back there again; hoping of course that it wouldn't have changed a bit.

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