As many Los Angeles natives know, street vendor hotdogs are the city’s staple, right next to street tacos. Whether it be the bacon-wrapped, guacamole topped “chubi-dubi” hotdog found in the downtown alleys or the most common hotdog served with ketchup and mustard, both are a must-have for Angelinos. Another thing that all street hotdogs have in common is that they are simply delicious. Dirt Dog takes hotdogs to a whole new level combining gourmet hotdogs and the highly loved street hotdog.
Dirt Dog originally opened its doors in the birthplace of street hotdogs, Los Angeles. In Oct. 2019, Dirt Dog opened its newest location in Pasadena, bringing a new wave of gourmet hotdogs inspired by the street food of Los Angeles to the 91103.
Dirt Dog in Pasadena is about the same size as its original location, however customers don’t have to drive around for 30 minutes in order to find parking. In contrast to the Los Angeles location, the Pasadena location offers 90 minutes of free parking in the structure conveniently located a few doors away and even has outdoor seating so customers don’t have to wait around for tables to open up.
Dirt Dog offers the same menu at all of its establishments, although prices do vary according to location. According to employees, the dirty chili dog served on a buttered lobster roll and their veggie dogs are the most popular items on the menu.
“The buttered lobster roll tastes the best, in my opinion,” said Heymi Aguirre, 21, lead cashier at Dirt Dog. “It’s an extra 50 cents but it takes the chili chorizo to another level.”
The Veggie Dog, their vegetarian option, is a soy-based frank that can be prepared in the same way as any of their signature beef styles. The Veggie Dog tastes just as succulent as any beef dog, minus the feeling of guilt for eating an abnormally large hotdog. The Dirty Chili Dog features warm melted cheddar and mouthwatering chili chorizo topped with savory, crispy bacon bits.
Another appetizing item on the menu inspired by Los Angeles street vendors is their Dirty Corn. Their Dirty Corn is first grilled for a rich charred taste, then covered in lime, mayo, cotija cheese and finally topped with chili powder and delicious bacon bits. Giving typical street corn their signature Dirt Dog twist.
By no means does Dirt Dog replace the respected street vendors of Los Angeles, but it offers an authentic and upscale taste of the city’s treasured street food in areas where street vendors are typically non-existent. Customers no longer have to drive to Downtown for a decent hotdog, nor patiently wait to hear the horn of the “elote man” walking past their house. Now Pasadena residents can conveniently drive to East Union Street and comfortably enjoy gourmet versions of Los Angeles’ premier foods.
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