Getting Haute in Here
Luckily for those looking to conquer the bitter chill and ice of the past few days, there's a brand new Adams Morgan spot specializing in summer's favorite food. M'Dawg Haute Dogs is grilling up 13 types of dogs and sausages on three styles of buns.
These aren't your standard baseball stadium dogs, either. Italian sausage, a country garlic French sausage, pepper bacon-wrapped all beef dog, a corn dog, Hebrew National and a vegetarian "Virgin dawg" are just a sampler of what you'll find. Prices range from $4 for the basic "Cheap Trick" Chicago-style red hot to $20 for the "Kobe Bryant" kobe beef dog.
M'Dawg, from the owner of beloved neighboring late-night eatery Amsterdam Falafel Shop, opened yesterday. It follows its sister establishment as a tiny help-yourself eatery with a narrow culinary focus. Plus, it's open until late: You can satiate any hot dog cravings until the wee hours of 3 a.m. Thursday and 4 a.m. Friday and Saturday. And it doesn't exactly close early on other nights. The earliest time M'Dawg will shutter is midnight Sunday and Monday.
One departure from the Amsterdam formula is the choice of free versus supplemental toppings. Once you've selected your dog, you can opt for the complimentary basic "downtown" toppings of chopped onions, mustard, ketchup, relish and tomatoes. For a $1 splurge, you can pile on all-you-can-add "uptown" toppings, like sauteed mushrooms, hot cheese, bacon crumbles, caramelized onions, several mayonnaise options and chili. The dozens of tubs can be daunting, but the helpful staff will gladly throw in suggestions. My garlicky sausage tasted perfect with the suggested combination of frites sauce and spiced slaw, while apricot chutney and harissa remoulade aptly spiced up the basic dog. Hot dogs are served in the traditional red checked paper basket, so you can get messy adding lots of toppings.
There aren't many seats, but you can pull up a barstool seat to the counter, which is lined with photos of local dogs. Fido's not allowed inside, but if you bring him along, the restaurant sells biscuit treats.
To, well, top it all off, M'Dawg has a frequent buyers' "Kibble Kard." Buy eight hot dogs and get the ninth free. Now that's hot.
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