Monday, September 13, 2010

Jerry's Dogs - Irvine

Jerry's Dog is homegrown and that's the way I like it. The chain, started seven years ago in Santa Ana by one Jerry O'Connell (no, not the guy in Piranha 3D who married Rebecca Romijn) has grown to four outlets, each with buckets of free peanuts, and all exclusive to Orange County and Orange County alone (at least for now). This one's the newest and to me, closest. So close it can be walked; but far enough that doing so can be called exercise.

I took the hike after some urging from my lovely companion who thinks I could do well with a little cardiovascular activity once in a while. I agreed on the promise that a glistening, fat-spurting sausage sandwich was at the finish line.

Yes, my carrot was a Jalapeno Hot Link flecked with nicely sooty black spots where a wood fire kissed it. The bun? It was grill toasted too. And that part's essential because since they use a particulary soft roll, you need the extra protection from the moisture that will leech out from all the free toppings you will be invited to pile onto it.

I've matured some over the years and stick with maybe just two sauces, grilled onions, grilled peppers and some tomato. That's about all I need. Any pickle (and they have a lot of that) distracts from the sausage in my opinion. And you want all the juice, all the fatty goodness, and in my case, the jalapeno-amped flavor of the grilled tube of meat to speak loudly and clearly.

Mine was nicely spicy even before I asked to get a drizzle of chipotle mayo squirted on top.

The bratwurst, seen here on the right, is a kinder, gentler dog. It cozies up to you with a sweet milkiness--a contrast to the rude and spicy bark of the Jalapeno Hot Link.

So yes, I walked to get a dog and it was a good one. On our next trip, I have my eye on a bacon-wrapped wiener they call the "L.A. Dog". I think I'll drive to get it, because nobody walks in L.A.

Jerry's Dogs
(714) 665-1480
13786 Jamboree Rd
Irvine, CA 92602-1202

THIS WEEK ON OC WEEKLY:
Ecco - Costa Mesa

14 Comments:

At 11:52 AM, Blogger mark said...

Hahaha, the fat kid from Stand by Me married Uncle Jesse's ex-wife!

 
At 2:22 PM, Blogger digkv said...

I love Jerry's dogs! Usually I prefer my buns to be steamed but since they grill their buns on that smokey grill, it's amazing. Their sausages and hot dogs are so amazingly smokey tasting, the whole darn place smells like smoke! You are totally right about the toppings though, you can easily go overboard with their "subway"-like system of doling out toppings. Keeping it simple is best, Jerry's is truly one of the best hot dog places in OC

 
At 2:30 PM, Blogger ChristianZ said...

I used one of their coupons recently and thought they were pretty good. Think the next time I go I'm trying a corn dog and one of their ice cream sandwiches.

 
At 4:08 PM, Blogger Nobel4Lit said...

I went to the original one in Santa Ana and really liked it! I'm a vegetarian, so I had a "hot dog salad." ;)

 
At 4:58 PM, Blogger elmomonster said...

mark,

Not too shabby an accomplishment, I say...for both Jerry O'Connell the actor in getting Mystique and Jerry O'Connell the restaurateur in establishing a fine business.

digkv,

So true about the smoke. It's not as a smoky as a Korean BBQ or Peruvian pollo a la brasa joints that use wood, but you do get that aroma on your person when you leave!

Christian,

I've tried their corn dog. Quite good. I had no idea they had ice cream sandwiches though.

Nobel,

Vegetarian hot dog salad? How does that work? I'm intrigued. I'm going to have to look it up now!

 
At 6:36 PM, Blogger digkv said...

oh and here's a coupon so everyone can try it! http://campusmenus.com/print_special.php?s_id=1025

it's buy one sausage get one free.

 
At 10:44 AM, Blogger ChristianZ said...

It's the kind of ice cream sandwich where you pick what kind of cookie you want on the bottom, what kind of ice cream you want, and the kind of cookie you want on the top.

 
At 11:02 AM, Blogger christoofat said...

oooh,OK, I'm down for it. This looks good & not too far to drive by at lunchtime yipeee!

 
At 9:01 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...

Digkv,

Sweet. Wish I had this. But that just gives me an excuse to go back.

Christian,

So we can make our own Frozen Franken-Cookie? Awesome!

chris,

The other Jerry's are a mere hop, skip and a jump away. This one, if you're in Irvine, is just a hop!

 
At 11:01 AM, Anonymous MIkeHu said...

Besides the dogs, I'm a big fan of Jerry's burgers, too. Although I am also a big fan of both INO and 5G's, I'd take a Jerry's first. You can't beat the flavor and the great toppings selection.

 
At 6:34 PM, Blogger Sawyer said...

never heard of this place, but gotta love the dog places. how much was it btw? i'm curious to see how it compares to other places. i tried the berkeley dog in brea which was good. there's a place in davis called the hot dogger which i like too

 
At 9:44 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...

Mike,

You know, I am so laser-focused on the dogs and sausages I often forget they do burgers. Gonna have to remember next time! Except that bacon-wrapped dog looks mighty convincing.

Sawyer,

Hot dogs of various lengths and compositions range from $3.05-$3.85. Sausages are $5.25. And a comparison to others? Hmmm...that's tough. Jerry's has its charms as others do.

I've not been to Berkeley Dog, but if you asked me what my favorite sausage house is so far, it would have to be The Dog House in Long Beach...but then Long Beach is wayyyy too far when you just want a hot dog. It might as well be in New York!

 
At 10:22 AM, Blogger brekkie_fan said...

My Market Place coupons keep expiring before I remember to go! Plus all the options for toppings can make me take forever to order (Almost like at Which Wich).

On an 80's movie reference note, did you know that Chunk (from Goonies) is now a lawyer?

 
At 7:10 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...

Brekkie Fan,

Funny enough, I did know that! But the kid who played Short Round could probably still beat him up. He does kung fu choreography or something these days!

 

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