SAN DIEGO — When I worked in radio back in Chicago, I used to do weekly hot dog reviews. So when I moved to my new home in San Diego, people were always asking me, "Where do you find the best hot dog in SoCal?" Honestly, I had no idea. So I turned to our #UpWIth8 viewers for help! News 8 viewer Diane says her favorite spot is Barrio Dogg in Historic Barrio Logan. So off we went!
Pabio Rios is the brains behind the Angus beef. He says he and his business partner, Ernesto, had a crazy idea to use the hot dog as the vehicle of expression for their childhood. So that's exactly what they did!
They started off, back in the summer of 2017, selling hot dogs out of a 1964 Chevy Impala. Since then, they've turned the cart into a full fledged frank -- serving up gourmet hot dogs with flavors from around the world with a Chicano comfort twist.
Pablo says the reason they started Barrio Dogg is because he and Ernesto wanted people to know that the internationally recognized comfort food of a hot dog can be kicked up to give you an actual experience. That's why their dogs also come with the option to come wrapped in two slices of Applewood bacon, cooked until crispy. Yum!
Oh, and you better believe they have a Chicago style dog on the menu. They call it the El Capone! Pablo's cousin Edgar is from Chicago and he says when they were coming up with the concept, he knew the Chicago style dog would definitely have to be on the menu. They changed it up a bit, but not too much, in fear of getting beat up by his Chicago family!
Obviously this means -- NO KETCHUP allowed on the Chicago style dog!
The signature dog at Barrio Dogg? Well, that's actually the El Xolito. Obviously, we know San Diego is a border town to Tijuana, but Tijuana is not only known for tacos, it's actually also known for its street hot dogs. And yes, ketchup is totally allowed on the El Xolito. It also comes with grilled onions, cheese, sour cream, salsa verde, diced red onion, diced tomato...yum!
Huge props to News 8 viewer Diane who brought me to Barrio Dogg! By the way, Diane is just like me, a former Chicagoan who now calls San Diego home and enjoys a good dog.
Frankly, it's really hard for me to declare a 'weiner' between the Chicago style dog and the Ex Xolito. I relish the time I'll be able to bring my 'buns' back to Barrio Dogg and 'ketchup' with everyone here. I know I'm on a roll, but I can't 'mustard' up another pun. Until we meat again.