Jimmy Buff's of 14th Ave. & 9th St. in Newark, NJ is where the hotdog with an Italian twist was first concocted by the founder, James "Bluff" Racioppi in 1932. Great-Grandpa got his nickname from his style at the card table. Translation from Italian to English came up with the nickname "BUFF". In the 20s and 30s, everyone had a nickname and hence James Racioppi became known as "Jimmy Buff".
The Italian hot dog was first served as a treat by the Racioppis for close friends and relatives. It went over so big with them, it became the center of their menu and ultimately a customer favorite. The fresh onions, peppers, and potatoes combined with a hot dog is what allows the speciality its claim to originality.
Today, over 81 years later, the Italian Hot Dog and its nearest relative, the Italian Sausage, are the staple fare at Jimmy Buff's and take turns outselling each other.
Today we cook our Italian Hot Dogs and Sausages in cholesterol free soybean oil just like Grandpa Buff did in 1932. The tradition lives on.
The Originators of the Italian Hot Dog: Jimmy "Buff", Mary, Mike, and Tommy Racioppi. This vintage photo was probably taken in the mid-thirties. The Racioppi family opened their first of many family-run hot dog and sausage stores in 1932. Over eighty years later, their family is continuing the tradition of serving quality food, made with fresh ingredients. So delicious! Once you try our sandwiches, you will be our next regular customer!