Here’s Why New Bedford’s Paddy’s Hot Dogs Only Lasted Two Years
One of my favorite things in life is grabbing late-night grub after going out on the town with friends. Hot dogs were always my go-to.
If you remember Paddy's Hot Dogs on Purchase Street in downtown New Bedford, chances are you miss them just as much as I do. The other night, as I was walking out of Pour Farm Tavern, I glanced across the street where Paddy's once stood. I was hoping for, wishing for, wanting one of those delicious post-bar glizzies.
Well-known for their Azorean, Sloppy with Cheese, linguica and tofu dogs, Paddy's had it all and the flavor fusion was a certified knockout. And just like that, it was over.
I remember the end well. Paddy's had a solid two-year run, but then one night as I was stumbling over from The Vault (formally known as Greasy Luck), there was a closed sign in the window and it was pitch dark inside.
It made me wonder: What happened to the place?
I needed answers, so I reached out to one of the owners, Ryan Lemieux, who gave me the most relatable story.
"Well, we started selling hot dogs during the days and at nights, but then decided to just do weekend nights," Lemieux said. "It was fun while we were slinging hot dogs, but it was starting to become a lot of work, especially with our busy lives."
Lemieux would finish work around 3:30 a.m. following Saturday night, just to be up for 7:30 a.m. on Sunday morning.
"The juice wasn't worth the squeeze," Lemieux said. "I learned a lot about business and had fun, but you need to be married to it and I simply wasn't ready for it. It was never meant to be run as a late-night-only hot dog place, especially in the winter when business is lean. I needed to be there six days a week to break even and it was taking a toll mentally and physically."
Lemieux said he found himself working endless hours spent away from family.
That said, he has no regrets about his learning curve as it only helped make him understand the business more in-depth.
"I love all my regular customers," he said. "We had a good vibe and made many new friends. For a bunch of drunk people waiting in line for a half-hour, we never had any problems.
"There are some nights I miss it, but now that I have a family, it's near impossible. Even the Department of Health was awesome and really cool to work with, I have nothing but good things to say about them."
The saying goes that all good things come to an end, but perhaps there's more to the story here.
There's talk of a food truck in Lemieux's future, but that's more of a pipe dream than a definite.
If it becomes reality, I'll be the first one in line with an order for a dozen gaggers. #FingersCrossed