I was driving along University when I noticed a little window and a sign for a shop called Daddy's Hot Dogs. For some reason the name rang a bell....then it came to me, I'd read a short blurb about the place on sdurban, though I don't recall Paul having checked out the place yet. A hot dog seemed like a pretty good idea, something that would hold me until dinner.
The menu seemed simple with four items, a 100% all beef dog, a bison dog, a veggie dog (?!?), and a "special" which on this day was a buffalo chicken dog. I say "seemed" because you can order all sorts of toppings and additions to your dog (didn't see no ketchup, though!). The dogs are also butterflied and griddled to order....there are those who waffle at waiting more than two minutes for your dog, this ain't the place for you. No hot dog lying in a steamer, dirty water, or on a hot dog roller here......
The wind seemed to be picking up and rain drops began to fall, so the owner "Daddy" whose given name is, I believe is William, invited me into the back of the restaurant where there's another counter and a couple of seats.
Here I watched the self proclaimed "hot dog chef" in action. All dogs are served butterflied, all items are heated on the griddle, the buns are warmed (thankfully not split and griddled), to order. Daddy told me that temperature and the dog is king here, he doesn't like to overdress his pups.
My all beef dog with deli mustard, griddled onions, and kraut - three bucks, perhaps high for New York or Chicago, but pretty much in the pocket for San Diego.
I wasn't sure how I'd like the butterflied and griddled dog, but it had that nice all beef dog and seasonings flavor which completed the mildly pungent onions and mustard, the kraut, nice and warm added the nice acid component to the deal. The only thing I had qualms with was the roll, which was too big...the bread to protein ratio was off. Also because it was place whole on the griddle, the interior was cold. Personally, I'm partial to lightly steamed rolls, which seem to impart a light fluffiness to the whole deal. Still, this was decent, I'd have it again.....of course then I had to ask Daddy what kind of dog he used. He gave me a wry smile and told me, "I'm not going to tell you, no one else in San Diego serves these and I want to keep it that way." Though after chatting with Daddy a bit, I got some clues...Daddy is a New Yorker who favors Papaya King and Gray's Papaya, so I have feeling he uses a Sabrett type all beef frankfurter.....honestly, I don't need to know any more.
Daddy's Hot Dogs
1281 University Ave
San Diego, CA 92103
Tues-Wed 11 am - 8 pm
Thurs 11 am - 10 pm
Fri-Sat 11 am - 2 am
Sun 11 am - 6 pm