KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- By now, most everyone has heard about the buzz over Popeye's chicken sandwich, which sold out after becoming a social media sensation.
Now, a Kansas City company is relishing similar success with one of its products: Wagyu Beef Hot Dogs.
The hot dogs, made by veteran-owned and veteran-run KC Cattle Company, are taking the country by storm.
According to Owner Patrick Montgomery, for the first year the hot dogs didn’t sell too well. “Mostly because it was hit or miss during the season,” he said.
But when Food & Wine magazine -- which is owned by Meredith Corporation, the same parent company of KCTV5 -- compared their hot dogs to steak “it blew up our small company overnight” according to Montgomery.
Food & Wine wanted to find “the best hot dog the world had to offer,” so they taste tested hot dogs from across the country.
Their favorite was KC Cattle Company’s Wagyu Beef Hot Dog.
“Caseless hot dog, all natural, naturally cured,” Montgomery said, describing the hot dogs.
What makes Wagyu beef special is that it has two mutations that allows for that awesome marbling and buttery flavor.
Food & Wine said, in part, “It was basically like eating a steak in a bun, or an elevated ‘tube steak,’ if you will.”
“We had about a half million people visit the website in 24 hours and it’s been nothing but running and gunning ever since,” Montgomery said.
In that 24-hour period, they also had about 3,000 orders. “Before that, it was pretty typical to get about 100 orders a week,” Montgomery explained.
The influx of order caught them a little off guard.
“We only had 40 pounds of hot dogs in stock when this happened,” he said. “We went from producing 200 pounds a month, to 2,000 pounds a week.”
They’ve even had to hire on more veterans, which is something that’s always been a goal of Montgomery’s.
“This has definitely always been a stepping stone for us to be able to help out more people that are transitioning from the military to civilian life,” he said.
Because they don’t sacrifice quality for quantity, KC Cattle Company has sold out of almost all their products in the past month.
“We should have things back in stock in a few weeks,” Montgomery said. “We gave a longer estimate on the website, but we’d rather under promise and over deliver.”
Regardless of whether or not you also think it tastes like steak, Montgomery has some advice for you if you wind up purchasing some. “You can’t overcook it,” he said. That means no dark grill marks.
“I like my hot dogs a little charred on the grill, but you can’t do that with these because the fat all runs out of the hot dog and that’s the thing that makes it really special and that unique eating experience,” he explained.
Montgomery said their two bestselling states outside of Missouri are New York and California.
The KC Cattle Company is also looking into purchasing a fulfillment center closer to the city.