Leaders in the Japanese Hot Dog Craze
Hot diggity dog — the gourmet hot dog craze is going strong!
No longer reserved just for the backyard barbecue, this beloved food is finally being taken seriously by serious chefs and is finding itself a part of the uber-trendy food scenes in Seattle, LA, and New York.
The leaders of the Japanese hot dog craze which started back in 2010 are hot dog joints like Japadog, a chain of hot dog carts with nine locations including seven in Canada and two in Los Angeles, and TokyoDog, a food truck that makes the rounds of Seatle and Redmond, WA.
Japadog has grown into a popular lunch, dinner and late-night favorite. To create a “Japadog,” owner Noriki Tamura takes a traditional hot dog and slathers a mix of Japanese ingredients such as daikon, miso, bonito flakes and arabiki sausage on top of it.
The most popular order is the Spicy Cheese Terimayo, a jalapeno and cheese bratwurst covered in a teriyaki sauce, mayo and strips of dried nori or seaweed. It’s one of the simpler Japadog selections compared to the Hot Spicy, which is a beef dog topped with spicy sauce and lettuce, or the Oroshi, a pork bratwurst topped with daikon or radish.
At TokyoDog, one of the favorites is the Shibuya Dog, an all-beef hot dog topped with butter grilled onions, terriyaki sauce, a miso/mayo mixture and nori or seaweed strips.
These specialty hot dogs typically sell for between $4 to $7, but fans rave about the complex layering of flavors and line up for more!
A quick look at the Japadog menu will give you a sense for the creativity of Japanese hot dogs and why its likely we’ll see more Japanese inspired hot dog joints popping up across the country.