Get That Wiener in Some Buns, at Dapper Dog in the Castro

The Chicago Dog could not be more legit

“Because wieners are happiest between two buns” says the sandwich board outside of Dapper Dog, the latest fast-casual spot to open up in the Castro.

It’s taken up the former home of The Bead Store, proof that the neighborhood is just getting more food-centric all the time, and even though the $6-and-up price point is a bit steeper than Nathan’s in Coney Island, it’s totally unlike anything else in the ‘Stro.

[jump] Dapper Dog is a very simple operation, with no online presence at all. There are three types of dog (Niman Ranch beef, chicken and veggie) served a dozen ways. Some are classic (a New York dog with sauerkraut, mustard and onion, or a chili dog with cheddar and onion), while others are very 2010s (a banh mi dog with sliced cucumber, pickled carrot, cilantro, jalapeños, chopped peanuts and sriracha mayo). If you like your junk food to be drowning in colorful antioxidants, an absolutely authentic Chicago Dog would be a good bet, from the electric-green sweet relish and tomato wedges to the sport peppers. That bun, though; it’s got poppy seeds, baby.

You can lard things up by adding bacon, egg or cheese, or take it in a curious direction with a Napa dog (arugula, crumbled blue cheese, diced dried apricots and house apricot sauce). There is only one side dish, and it has pit-stop-before-calling-it-a-night written all over it: loaded potato croquettes (bacon, chive and potato with a cheesy center; four for $5). No liquor license, but the refrigerator case has vintage 7-Up and Fanta.

Although the feng shui is a little weird (instead of a pick-up window, you’re basically shunted to the side to stare at the recycling bin), the space has such a small footprint that it can’t be helped. And because Dapper Dog is open until 11 p.m. on boring days and 2:30 a.m. Thursday through Saturday, it’s going to gobble up the late-late crowd when Marcello’s Pizza and other spots have already closed for the night and waiting for a table at Orphan Andy’s sounds like a yawn. Enjoy those nice new sidewalks, Castro-goers, perfect for walking a dog, and now for eating one.

Dapper Dog, 417 Castro, 553-6332.

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