Gray’s Papaya

Gray’s is a NYC institution. I believe the chain has dwindled down to one remaining shop, on Broadway & 72nd Street. There are/were a few knock-off versions, if I recall, like Mike’s Papaya and Papaya King, but Gray’s is the one and only. Get it while you still can, if you feel the overwhelming need to try one.

They’re known for cheap-ass grilled “franks,” which are essentially their snappy lips-and-assholes hot dogs slapped on a bun, which are then guzzled down with some fruit slush type exotic drinks. The juices are pure sugar deliciousness.


When I was in law school, the “Recession Special” was $2.75 for two dogs and a small drink. Fast forward 15 years and we are still in a recession, yet the price for the special is now $5.75.


These fuckers will give you heartburn, stinky burps, and the runs, but they’re great in a bind or when you’re in a hurry …or when you are completely fucking wasted.


2090 Broadway
New York, NY 10023

2 thoughts on “Gray’s Papaya”

  1. Like the sign at Gray’s says: “Better than Filet Minon.”

    Hell, yeah they are! When I was in high school in the 80’s the dogs were 50 CENTS!!! (and I could eat 6 of ’em) My heart broke when they bumped them up to .75 around 1990, but they went back down to .50 shortly thereafter (power to the people!). The 2.75 recession special was originally for the recession of the early ’90’s. Twenty-some years later I guess it’s time to cough up 5.75. Good thing 2 is my max these days.

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