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My first trip to Joel Watkins’ hot dog stand on the corner of 19th and Wynkoop streets was on the promise from my cousin that Watkins grilled up the closest thing to a Chicago dog west of the Mississippi. He was right. Watkins nailed all the important touches: steamed buns, brats and dogs simmered in beer before they hit the grill, and all the right condiments (minus the pickle spears) to add the finishing flavors. I’ve been back often to Watkin’s cart before Colorado Rockies games since that first day. Besides the stand-out dogs, I can always count on him being there, as he hasn’t missed an opening pitch since Coors Field opened in 1995.
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