FOOD: Oh My Dog! Pop Up Hot Dogs
Written by: Sophie Taylor
We spoke with Oh My Dog! founder, Joel Bowen about his pop up hot dog stalls currently making the rounds in North London and sampled the delights at their last residence in the Horatia Pub, Holloway Road. Take a look at Oh My Dog’s Facebook page to find out the hottest dog venue and quickly get your mouth around a heritage breed Frankfurter-filled Brioche bun before Joel can say pickled mooli.
Joel is a meat lover. Ain’t no mistakin’. Is the rumour he ate nothing but sausage for 6 months (calm down you filthy beast) 100% quality meat truth?
“Yes! There was a lot of research to be done. I wanted to find the perfect one. Me and my old business partner also cooked 25 different batches of chilli in his flat, forcing anyone we knew to try it. We messed around with recipes for a year until our strong personalities clashed and now Oh My Dog! is just me while my friend runs The Breakfast Company which specialises in fantastic breakfast delivery.”
But you were brought up vegetarian?
“Yes I had no choice! My parents were both vegetarians. As an unruly teen I discovered weed, got stoned, smelt my friends bacon and had to try it! I’ve never looked back. I told my parents, hey! Bacon! You’ve gotta try this stuff! I even converted them into meat eaters. It’s been full steam meat ahead ever since.”
Why pop ups?
“I started Oh My Dog before knowing about Kerb 3 years ago. It took a year to get off the ground. Before hot dogs, I was a headhunter and my friend was an oil rig designer.”
“Kerb is a street food collective – a group of street food traders fed up with market organisers and red tape who clubbed together. They started Eat Street, then Kerb. They’re incredibly picky, looking for only the best quality in street food so they’ve got a great reputation. Kerb are fantastic to work with, it’s basically just a big community – big group of foodie friends that hang out.”
Okay, let’s get to the important bit. Favourite relish?
“What! I can’t choose. I do love cherry tomato relish, caramelised shallots with Henderson’s sauce (it’s big in Sheffield at the moment) and vodka – a bit like an Italian sauce. It’s perfectly sweet and savoury. But I go in cycles, I like them all. We have a stall at British Summer Time and the favourite relish there is the Korean mayonnaise: fermented chilli bean paste.”
Joel’s love for the hot dog is palpable and he’s clearly a very hands-on owner, interrupting our chat to go to the rescue of a member of staff struggling with a large can of pickles. What a guy.
What we had
The Chilli SteakDog and the veggie YumDog, plus a couple of ciders for good measure.
That we didn’t try the Oh My Fries with cheddar, OMD BBQ sauce, jalapenos and crispy onions. CRISPY ONIONS. Wah.
The sausages are huge (seriously, calm down) and the toppings are generous. The jalapenos didn’t blow my head off so I could really savour the flavour of that slow roasted bourbon chilli-steak. The seasonal veg side slaw and complementary gherkins are a proper little treat after the spice. The demi brioche buns are hand baked, light and not too sweet. My veggie friend was impressed by the meaty texture of the soy version of the YumDog, while desperately trying to work out what the secret sauce was and licking her basket clean. And nose. She got mustard all over her nose.
Go hungry and you won’t be disappointed. This is hot dog street food at it’s most passionate and filling.
The next North London location is under wraps until next week, but will be a more permanent and long term set up in the Islington / Finsbury park area. Check their facebook page for all the exciting sausage-y deets.
And while you work up an appetite, have a look at the Oh My Dog! SoundCloud playlist: www.soundcloud.com/ohmydog_sounds
Photos by Sophie Taylor and courtesy of Kerb Food
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