Held in the Blues Kitchen bar, competitors will be guzzling hot dogs for the hefty title of 'Hot Dog King' for the year. The winner will also take home a Blues Kitchen voucher worth £100 so if you're brave enough, enter now on the Blue Kitchen website. Those with a smaller stomach can enjoy live country music and acoustic blues performances late into the evening.
In Kansas, they take their barbecues seriously. The owner of Bodean's came from the smoke-pit capital of the USA to show London how it's done, and seven years and five branches later (this is number two), we can still say this is the best barbecue in the city.
Under Hungerford Bridge, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX
Americana is one of several current food trends, and so are 'food trucks', as the Yanks call them. Cue Pitt Cue Co, which has recently set up in a shady patch under Hungerford Bridge on the South Bank (beneath the railway line from Charing Cross to Waterloo East) peddling good ol' American barbecue. Vegetarians need not apply, as it's all meat here: pork, chicken, messy ribs and beef brisket, to name but a few.
From the team behind Polpo and Polpetto, this hip diner brings a touch of New York's Lower East Side to London. The rusting speakeasy-style entrance is as discreet as can be; inside, tattooed bar staff mix drinks as small plates of bar snacks or bigger dishes are slid across the wide, steel-topped bar to customers.
It may appear to be your average burger, but look under the hood and you'll find a pattie ground from 21 day-aged rump, chuck and brisket cuts of grass-fed Aberdeen Angus cows. It's a winning recipe that makes for a burger with real bite. The owners have forsaken novelty constructions and stuck with the classic 6oz, a cheeseburger (topped with monterey jack or cashel blue), and the Byron special with dry-cure bacon and mature Cheddar.
A lovable place that aims to recreate the atmosphere of a New York speakeasy, Purl's decor is simple but endearingly eclectic. The bar occupies the basement of a Georgian house and features low vaulted ceilings and lots of individual seating areas. The list of original cocktail creations is grounded in a confident mastery of the classics.
For a so-called 'secret' speakeasy, there's been an awful lot of publicity about this new basement bar beneath the Breakfast Club in Spitalfields. According to the booze bloggers, in order to gain exclusive entry, you need to embark on a clandestine correspondence with a chap called Henri who gives it the big hush-hush and who may, if you're lucky and tap the side of your nose, reveal the covert entrance to this cloak-and-dagger drinking den.
Although it's technically a private-members club, the hoi polloi can make reservations and enjoy this sophisticated drinking club until 11pm. At which point they turn into pumpkins or something. Worth the risk, we assure you.
161 Kingsland Rd London, E2 8LA
A new and top-secret late night dive inspired by the underground speakeasies of the Prohibition era, which showcases work and performances from musicians, poets, filmmakers, artists, writers and dreamers. Don't worry, the booze is pretty good too.
On City Road, about 25 metres from the roundabout beneath which winds the labyrinth of Old Street tube station, you'll discover a door. It's between a café that begins with a 'C' and a cafeteria which is, for some reason, spelled with a 'K'. Behind it is this chic and secret speakeasy.