Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2010, the Walter’s Hot Dog pagoda on Palmer Avenue has been a must-go destination for Westchester residents for 97 years. The business, which now employs up to 30 in high season, has expanded since Walter Warrington founded it in 1919, yet many aspects of the fourth-generation family enterprise remain the same.
Walter’s still uses its original hot-dog recipe, made from a mix of beef, pork, and veal and split down the middle—previously recognized as the best in the US by Gourmet magazine. “People who had it 50 years ago say it tastes the same,” says Walter’s great-grandson, Gene Baca, director of business development. Also unchanged is its signature house-made mustard, now bottled and carried in 17 grocery stores.
There’s plenty of institutional memory to keep the company consistent: Walter’s son Eugene Warrington, 94, has owned the stand for
more than 60 years. Baca works alongside his mother, Christine Warrington, the CEO, and
his sisters Christine Sand, the restaurant manager, and Katharine Woodward, who runs events and public relations.
In many ways, the iconic Westchester business has kept pace with the times. In 2014, Walter’s did a major interior renovation, and it has been luring foodies with newer menu items, such as its popular funnel-cake fries. In the last two years, Walter’s launched two new food trucks, with a third truck on order.