Steve’s Hot Dogs recently expanded its menu to include a whole new set of offerings, available at both locations. On Nov. 20, the independently owned gourmet hot-dog joint rolled out a new menu of smoked burgers and more.

Steve’s Hot Dogs originally debuted on The Hill in 2011, later opening a Tower Grove East location in 2014. In 2015, its menu expanded to offer mac ’n’ cheese bowls. Another menu addition was the regular inclusion of a weekly special: waffle dogs with cornmeal batter. This year’s evolution includes eight new burgers and three new hot dogs.

“The idea has been simmering in my head for a long time, but it took a bit of research and development to figure out how to execute it,” owner Steve Ewing says. “My creative partner, Joe Zeable, and I got together and came up with a technique to smoke our burgers like we do with our dogs.”

Similar to the sausages, the quarter-pound Angus and brisket burger patties are hickory smoked at a low temperature before getting smashed and grilled over an open fire. All burgers – available as singles or doubles  are served on Vitale’s Bakery brioche buns.

Try highlights such as Ewing’s favorite, the Axel Foley with lettuce, tomato, onions, a pickle spear, ketchup and mustard. The Mr. Robinson burger riffs on the shop’s best-selling Gorilla Mac & Cheese dog with toppings of mac ’n’ cheese, bacon, fried onion and barbecue sauce.

“We’ve worked hard to put together these recipes,” Ewing says. “The idea is to present these as gourmet sandwiches with the best toppings we can offer.”

A new vegetarian option, the Prince Akeem burger, comes with a Field Roast veggie patty, grilled squash, sautéed onion, sweet relish, Sriracha or brown mustard. New hot dogs on the menu include a Carolina slaw-topped hot dog, a bacon-cheeseburger hot dog and a club sandwich-style hot dog topped with bacon, avocado, tomato and ranch.

“People have been responding well within a week of rolling out the menu. A lot of regulars are trying it out,” Ewing says. “At Tower Grove, we’re selling as many burgers as dogs. This has been really exciting.”

On Dec. 17, the Tower Grove East location will host an acoustic brunch buffet with live music from four bands including Steve Ewing Band. The buffet features all-you-can-eat hot dogs, mac ’n’ cheese and chili. A holiday karaoke party will take place on Dec. 21.

Steve’s Hot Dogs’ location on the Hill is open Monday through Thursday from 10am to 3pm, Friday from 10am to 4pm and Saturday from 10am to 4pm. Its Tower Grove East location is open Monday through Thursday from 4 to 10pm, Friday from 4 to 1:30am and Saturday from 11am to 1:30am.

Steve's Hot Dogs, 2131 Marconi Ave., St. Louis, Missouri, 314.762.9899 and 3457 Magnolia Ave., St. Louis, Missouri, 314.932.5953, steveshotdogsstl.com