Leading up to this year's Best of L.A. issue (due out Oct. 4), we'll be counting down, in no particular order, 100 of our favorite dishes.
82: Sooo Cali Dog at Dog Haus.
Maximalist-topping hot dogs aren't exactly new in Los Angeles. Pink's has been creating celebrity-named behemoths for the better part of a century. And those famous bacon-wrapped hot dogs, drowned in grilled onions, tomatoes, jalapeños, mayo or anything else on hand, are common enough to be labeled a public commodity.
But a few years ago, the ante increased -- toppings became more gourmet, more extreme and much, much bolder. Would it be too far to call fried eggs and onion strings the new mustard? Pasadena's Dog Haus, which recently opened a second location complete with an outdoor biergarten in Old Town, is one of the few places in town that distinguishes the fine line between creative hot dogs and condiment overloads.
The quarter-pound hot dogs are substantial things, seared to the point of yielding an audible snap on the first bite, tucked into a couple grilled sweet Hawaiian rolls. The "Little Leaguer" covered in chili, cheese and crushed Fritos, or the "Grand Slam," topped with a breakfast platter of tater tots, bacon and a fried egg, are as good as they are formidable. But it's the drawlingly titled "Sooo Cali" that finds the best balance: a handful of green roughage, a few slices of avocado, tomato, shards of tempura-fried onion and a thorough dousing of zesty basil aioli. Pizza elitists were known to cluck their tongues when Wolfgang Puck first put BBQ chicken onto a crust. We imagine the hot dog bourgeois might share the same sentiment. Us? We'd prefer seconds.
Check out the rest of our 100 of our favorite dishes. Suggestion? Write us a comment.
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