Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Dog-n-Burger - Norfolk, VA
Alex and I have a list of all local restaurants that we pull out whenever we are uninspired about where to eat lunch. It has been a while, but last week the list came out. We narrowed our options down from 2-3 choices to Dog-n-Burger. Sometimes you just want a good hot dog (if you're a carnivore like me). Alex has been several times, but this was going to me my first venture to this Ghent staple. I have driven past it too many times to count, and it is always fairly busy. Since on street parking is often difficult, I felt fortunate to snag a spot near the corner of 20th Street.
Dog-n-Burger is in no way fancy, and that's exactly how it should be. There is a vintage coke machine greeting you at the entrance for some reason. The line was short, only two girls ahead of us, but one of the girls managed to make ordering as complicated and lengthy as possible. Once up, I placed the uncomplicated order of a #2 Beef Dog Combo, which is a 1/4 lb. "Hebrew National" beef hot dog, fries and large drink for $4.25. Nice price! You have to pay for drink refills, which irks me. Restaurants pay pennies for fountain drinks. Gimme a break. The menu offers the kind of variety you would expect: Hot Dogs, Burgers, Gyros/Pita, Philly Cheesesteak, and several "BBQ" options. If you are up for it, you can get a full rack of ribs with two rolls and two sides for $17.99.
I moved on down the line and quickly received my order. Orders are served in a brown bag, with the sandwich/dog/burger wrapped in waxed paper. As I said, not fancy. The similarity in packaging gave me a momentary Doumar's flashback. We opted for outdoor seating in their covered patio area, as there was a semi-cool breeze and they have overhead fans. They have additional outdoor seating in a fenced in area, featuring picnic tables with festive red and white umbrellas. The hot dog was excellent. They offer a good number of toppings, but I settled on the classic combination of mustard and relish. I also loved their Crinkle fries. They had just the right amount of crisp. Not a bad way to spend a lunch hour.
If you know me, you know one of my favorite places in town is No Frill Grill. Those geniuses also own Dog-n-Burger, a small hamburger and hot dog joint near 21st Street in Ghent. People always ask me, “What in the world do you eat at DnB?” since I am a vegetarian. Well, I will tell you. They have a veg burger and also a veg pita. The pita is very similar, if not the same, as the veg pita at Frill. This pita is also featured at the Stockley Gardens Art Festival, but under a different brand. Lettuce, peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, mushrooms, shredded cheese and pepper Parmesan sauce are wrapped in a warm pita. I requested the sauce on the side, but this was a mistake. Have it just as it is normally served, otherwise, it is slightly dry. I added a side of coleslaw to my wrap and that coleslaw somehow ended up on top of my wrap. I said side but the gent who took my order put it in the wrap (weird). It did not ruin it, but I asked for my side after I discovered what had occurred. I want what I ordered. I did not order a soda because there are no refills and they put a lot of ice in the cup which says ‘rip off’ to me.
Started in 1969, DnB is a step back in time with the old Coke machine and the diner style napkins, which are actually terrible, but you let it go here. Laine and I decided to sit outside in the shade, which is a lot less cramped as the inside. I had to keep my paper bag and napkins from flying away in the breeze, but all in all, I enjoyed myself. I know what to do next time (get my sauce on the pita) or try the veg burger and try one of the Brownies by Sheila. DnB has chocolate and blonde brownies that look out of sight. An evening or two, I have walked up to DnB and ordered the cheese fries. Now, in another entry I complain about cheese whiz style cheese, but actually, it goes on these fries quite well (and is what DnG serves on its cheese fries) and when you can eat for $5-6, can you really complain? If a dish is over $6 and comes with cheese whiz, I am not as forgiving.
Dog-n-Burger is open 11am-9pm Monday through Saturday, but note they close at 8pm most winter days. I found this out when I showed up at 7:55pm and the guys look quite annoyed but still served me.
2001 Manteo Street