Actually, it’s exactly what it sounds like. Hot dogs usually aren’t very interesting but these are nothing like the generic ones that Kobayashi stuffs down his gullet by the dozen. On the corner of Smithe and Burrard in downtown Vancouver is Japadog, a very unique little hot dog stand that serves hot dogs…Japanese style…that has drawn rave reviews from every newspaper in town. After hearing about it for so long, a few friends and I decided we had to go see for ourselves and headed downtown…specifically for hot dogs.
Japadog began in 2005 and on this particular day, the stand was manned by these two very happy folks who enthusiastically took our orders. They seemed to really take pride in and enjoy their work, asking which trimmings we wanted. Today, there were three different Japanese style hot dogs on the menu: Terimayo, Oroshi and Misomayo as you can see from the picture below.
They also make regular hot dogs but that would be like asking Michaelangelo to paint you a white canvas. You’d have to be a very boring person to order off the “regular” menu instead.
I ordered a Misomayo dog which was the most expensive of the bunch at a very reasonable $5.00. It had a blend of sesame sauce, Japanese mayonnaise and radish sprouts on top of a turkey smokey. Radish usually isn’t very appetizing but I assure you, this was delicious! Despite being a hot dog, it was distinctly Japanese. It reminded me a lot of those Japanese pancakes (or okonomiyaki). I topped it with a little of this fantastic wasabi mayo which had quite a bit of horseradish kick to it. One of these days, I’ll try to make some of this myself.
I was really, really hungry today so I wasn’t quite done. I ordered a Terimayo dog after I finished my first. This was basically fried onions, teriyaki sauce and seaweed on top of a 100% beef smokey. It was also delicious but not quite as good as the Misomayo dog.
If you plan on eating at Japadog, I must remind you that it’s a hot dog stand and there is nowhere to sit, which sucks in the 30-degree weather we’ve been having. There are benches or ledges, etc nearby, however. Drinks are $1.00 a piece and Japadogs usually range between $4.00 – $5.00 each. If you arrive right at lunch time, be prepared for a long wait as it’s a popular lunch destination for the numerous office buildings and Robson street stores nearby.
Also nearby was THIS beautiful beast…