Feltman’s Hot Dogs Outgrows its Space at Theatre 80, Leaves St. Mark’s
The Feltman’s hot dog stand on St. Mark’s Place closed down yesterday, a victim of its own success.
Owner Michael Quinn, who revived the Coney Island classic two years ago, announced last Friday that the kiosk has “outgrown” the space at Theatre 80 and is now discontinued.
When asked about a stand-alone brick-and-mortar in the neighborhood, Quinn confirmed as much, but wouldn’t disclose details. “We will continue to have a presence in the area,” he said. “Our new location in the area has not yet been confirmed.”
Meanwhile, Feltman’s hot dogs are still available at McSorley’s, and also Mikey’s Burgers on Ludlow Street.
In the annals of New York hot dog history, founder Charles Feltman is credited with inventing the hot dog as we know it back in 1867. Business boomed that first summer, having reportedly sold 3,684 “Coney Island Red Hots” right out of a cart.
Colloquial lore blames Nathan’s for Feltman’s demise. Apparently Feltman’s employee Nathan Handwerker left the company in 1916 to start Nathan’s, which undercut the whole business. But Quinn disputes the myth; he previously told Gothamist: “These two businesses coexisted for nearly 40 years. People like the whole ‘Nathan’s put Feltman’s out of business’ thing. No! Nathan opened his stand in 1916, Feltman’s lasted until 1954. Feltman’s was a completely different type of place! There was a park there, they showed outdoor movies, and they had the carousel. It was more of an upscale clientele at Nathan’s.”