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South Passaic Daily Voice serves Clifton, Haledon, Hawthorne, Little Falls, North Haledon, Passaic, Paterson, Prospect Park, Totowa, Wayne & Woodland Park

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South Passaic Daily Voice serves Clifton, Haledon, Hawthorne, Little Falls, North Haledon, Passaic, Paterson, Prospect Park, Totowa, Wayne & Woodland Park

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Rutt's Hut Ripper In Clifton Drawing Fans With Same Recipe For 89 Years

Rutt's Hut's famous rippers.
Rutt's Hut's famous rippers. Photo Credit: Rutt's Hut
A combo meal at Rutt's Hut. The chili comes as a side dish only.
A combo meal at Rutt's Hut. The chili comes as a side dish only. Photo Credit: Yelp
Rutt's Hut has a bar, dining room and take-out counter.
Rutt's Hut has a bar, dining room and take-out counter. Photo Credit: Yelp
A ripper with relish.
A ripper with relish. Photo Credit: Cindy Capitani
The bar is made for eating as much as drinking.
The bar is made for eating as much as drinking. Photo Credit: Cindy Capitani

CLIFTON, N.J. -- They file in at lunch time, grabbing a pint and two rippers, a Rutt's Hut combo meal in Clifton since 1928.

The River Road eatery is a busy hub for local office and warehouse workers in the area of routes 21 and 3 as well as a foodie hotspot.

"If anyone asks, we weren't here," said Ralph, who works at a nearby office. He's been coming here for over 20 years.

Not much is different at Rutt's Hut in 89 years. The restaurant changed hands only once, and the deep fried hot dogs and relish stayed the same.

The atmosphere is uniquely hip with its 1950s luncheonette decor and the roadside restaurant feeling.

The famous hot spot is owned by Nicholas Karagiorgis and Gus Chrisafinis, who have been running the eatery with their families since 1974.

They kept the same recipes from the original owners, Abe and Anna Rutt, who were said to be the first to start deep frying hot dogs.

The Rutt's original relish, made with cabbage, carrots, onions and a hint of mustard, is still homemade today.

The restaurant community mourned the sudden loss June 4, 2016 of John Karagiorgis, 41, of Paramus, son of Rutt Hut's co-owner Nicholas and a staple at the eatery.

Related: VIDEO: John Karagiorgis Of Clifton's Rutt's Hut Dies At 45

While John Karagiorgis was as much a part of Rutt's Hut as the rest of the family, the hum of the business carried on, as much by reputation as the consistency of their food.

The iconic hot dog house is a top 10 list favorite for best franks in the state and has been featured on a PBS special.

It's been on numerous Food Network shows and on the Travel Channel's "Deep-Fried Paradise."

Rutt's Hut is listed in the book "1,000 Places to See in the USA and Canada Before You Die."

It also won the Daily Voice DVlicious contest twice for best fries.

Related: Clifton's Rutt's Hut Adds DVlicious 'Best Fries' Certificate To Honors

Aside from rippers -- hot dogs deep fried until the skin rips -- Rutt's Hut has an extensive menu that goes beyond burgers and fries.

Seafood includes fish and chips, fried shrimp sandwich, fried filet sandwich, fried scallop sandwich and fried clam sandwich.

There's also barbecue beef or pork, Maryland roast chicken, Vermont roast turkey and Long Island roast duckling and more.

Rutt's Hut is located at 417 River Road, Clifton and is open 8 a.m.-11 p.m.

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