2234 Logan Avenue, Barrio Logan
It feels like yesterday that low rider loving hot dog specialist Barrio Dogg first set up shop in a small Logan Avenue storefront fronted by a piece of ‘64 Impala. But not only has it been a solid couple of years, the shop has spent most of that time doing business in a larger venue a couple blocks away on the same street, making the move for additional seating and a little breathing room for those seeking its in-demand dogs.
A few weeks ago, the restaurant grew again, taking over the suite next door to install a bar and yet more tables, solidifying its status as a bustling spoke in Barrio Logan’s thriving weekend nightlife, which is routinely accompanied by a glossy lineup of custom rides. The shop’s décor finds many colorful ways to celebrate Chicano culture, and Barrio Dogg’s draught system is no different. Set up so its beer tap handles pour off what resembles a car axle, the chrome rig is tricked out on each end with whitewall tires on a shiny blue set of rims.
The hot dogs themselves are likewise decked out, building off the concept of a Baja-style bacon-wrapped dog (bacon optional). Dressed with condiments and toppings ranging from sesame seeds, celery salt, or pomegranate seeds to poblano peppers, sauerkraut, or pickle spears, most of these 9- to 10-dollar dogs boast five different toppings minimum. Even the most basic hot dog on the menu, La Virgen ($5), receives a generous drizzling of ketchup, mustard, and mayo. And in the case of my recent order at least, a pleasant little mayonnaise happy face.
Hot dogs on a bun remain the best reason to visit Barrio Dogg (though the Pinstripe Pale Ale, the house beer made by local brewery Second Chance Beer Co., may be a close second). However, since moving to the larger space (and kitchen), the addition of chili and French fries have beefed up the menu. For me, inevitably, that means an order of chili fries is on the way. Basically, any hot dog on the menu can be deconstructed so that its toppings served on top of a pound of crispy fries.
I went for El Vaquero, normally a chili dog slathered with beef chili, onion, jalapeño, salsa verde, and sour cream. All of this transfers to the form of so-called Barrio Fries ($10-14) including the hot dog itself, sliced up and tossed over so many toppings you can barely see the French fries beneath. It’s a whole lot of food, to the point the guy taking my order nearly talked me out of ordering a hot dog alongside it.
But I ate ‘em both. Minimal heartburn, no regrets. I’m pretty sure there’s room for more Barrio Dogg in the neighborhood.