No more whining and dining. In South Louisiana, flavors are going to the dogs. And if you’re looking for something fun to do this howliday weekend, you’ll go mutts over this idea.
Okay, we’ll try to limit the dog puns.
Dat Dog first opened in New Orleans in 2011 as an alternative to the boring traditional hot dog usually found in restaurants, concession stands and food trucks. CEO and founder Constantine Georges started with a pawsome 475-square-foot shack on Freret Street that served up unique dogs in unique ways. The small restaurant was wildly successful and Georges moved the colorful eatery across the street to a larger building. Then came additional locations on Magazine and Frenchmen streets in New Orleans, and most recently, a restaurant on historic Jefferson Street in the heart of downtown Lafayette.
We had visited the Freret location and enjoyed a variety of dogs but recently revisited the brand at downtown Lafayette's Dat Dog. We had to ask, “Who’s a good boy?” The answer? All of them. Here’s what we sampled and we loved every bite.
French fries come with a variety of toppings (above chili cheese fries) or none at all. We especially liked the fries topped with crawfish etouffee, but if you want everything, there's the WTF Fries loaded down with all kinds of goodness.
The chicken dog features an all-natural chicken breast that’s brined with Sirochi in-house and served fried or grilled on a hot dog bun with slaw and a special sauce akin to what you get at Raising Cane’s.
This dog was more of a traditional hot dog with a pickle slice and pickled green bean, plus onions, tomatoes, relish and mustard.
This yummy duck sausage dog featured a smoked duck sausage topped with a Creole spice blend, raspberry sauce, mustard and bacon bits. The combination of these flavors sent my taste buds singing.
The special of the week when we visited was a brisket dog, with big slices of crispy beef brisket.
You can even order the Datburger, hamburger that’s served hot dog style. Plus, there are three options for vegans and vegetarians - a chipotle dog with vegan sausage, eggplant vegan sausage with fennel and garlic and a smoked apple sage dog.
The Lafayette restaurant includes locally crafted beers and cocktails at its long bar in the front of the house, surrounded by tables for dining. In back is a fabulous new live music venue called The Platform, which features upstairs seating and another bar. The Platform may be rented out for special events or performances and, since Dat Dog sponsors fund-raising events for community organizations, it may serve as the perfect spot for functions.
There’s even a ghost reportedly living at the Lafayette location. And we don't think it's a dog.
Weird, Wacky and Wild South is written by food and travel writer Chere Dastugue Coen.