Papaya King Plots Hot-Dog Imperialism

We can just hear that Seinfeld bass-popping music.Photo courtesy of Papaya King
The recent price hike at Gray’s isn’t the only change afoot in the papaya world: Gray’s predecessor Papaya King, which recently opened locations in La Guardia and JFK, is poised to open two more stands — the first next month in Clifton, New Jersey, in the Corrado’s shopping center, and another one in the middle of the year near the Sears store at Fordham Road and Webster Avenue in the Bronx. President and CEO Dan Horan says he thinks the city can absorb 35 to 40 Papaya Kings and has already earmarked fifteen potential locations. Not only that, he’s opening another stand in Baltimore’s BWI airport in early 2007 and looking at opportunities as far west as Los Angeles. So why are there currently just three Manhattan locations? Apparently, rising rents and competition from banks eyeing the same 500-square-foot corner spaces are to blame. We’d much rather blow $1.79 on a Papaya dog (handmade from bull’s beef, unlike those of his competitors, Horan points out) than on unsavory ATM fees. — Daniel Maurer

Earlier: Bummer Indeed: Gray’s Papaya Finally Raises Prices