Cheap & Good

Cheap & Good: Be Frank, a hotdog stand at Paragon

I used to have a go-to hotdog place in town. The Brat, in the basement of Plaza Singapura, was always a pit stop for me after a movie at the mall.

Its franks were juicy, topped with mushroom and cheese or a meat-filled sauce, and served in a freshly toasted bun. Washed down with an ice-cold soda, it was the perfect food coma-inducing combo.

But that shop quietly disappeared two years ago and I did not find a decent replacement.

Recently, I discovered Be Frank, a gourmet hotdog shop in the basement of Paragon. The six-month-old establishment is winning over hungry shoppers with its cheap, yet filling, hotdogs.

There are six hotdog options, which each cost between $6.50 and $7.50. You can choose either a chicken or pork sausage. For a meal at an Orchard Road mall, it is a pretty decent price to pay.

I order the truffle egg mayo pork hotdog ($6.90), and that turns out to be my top pick. It is served hot and with a generous amount of creamy egg mayonnaise that covers the sausage entirely.

The truffle egg mayo pork hotdog ($6.90) comes with a generous amount of creamy egg mayonnaise that covers the sausage entirely.
The truffle egg mayo pork hotdog ($6.90) comes with a generous amount of creamy egg mayonnaise that covers the sausage entirely. ST PHOTO: NATASHA ANN ZACHARIAH

  • BE FRANK

  • B1-K26 Paragon, 290 Orchard Road, Paragon; open: 10am to 9.30pm daily

    Rating: 3/5

However there is still a good sausage to egg ratio, so each bite is light and not overwhelming. I love that the truffle smell is not overpowering either.

The other hotdog I like is the Cheezy Mushroom ($7.50). The mushroom chunks go on first, and for the big finish, molten raclette is scraped fresh from a cheese wedge and spread all over the bun.

It is an indulgent topping, but smells - and tastes - delicious.

Go for the set meal option, which costs an additional $3. Besides the hotdog, the set comes with a drink and either fries, two croquettes or fried mushrooms. I recommend either the croquettes or mushrooms.

The ping pong ball-sized croquettes have a smooth potato filling mixed with bacon bits and mozzarella. Mayonnaise is drizzled over. I cannot stop popping the fried mushrooms which are chunky and nicely breaded.

Not everything is a hit. The minced beef topping for the Coney's Island ($6.90) is bland and needs some flavour or spice.

Another thing that can be improved is the hotdog bun. It is soft and fluffy when served, but it gets soggy after sitting for more than five minutes. That makes it difficult to pick up the bun and eat.

There are tweaks that need to be made to some items, but I relish having found some good wieners once again.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on October 29, 2017, with the headline 'Hotdog hot spot'. Print Edition | Subscribe