Hot dogs are taking Dubai by storm with This is Hot Dog, The Hot Dog Stand and Mustard all competing for the title of Dubai’s favourite hot dog.
However if any of them can stake a claim for Dubai’s most unique hot dogs, it would have to be Mustard.
Mustard is the brainchild of two friends brought together through their husbands – with an idea first conceived as a food truck.
They worked with a local supplier to develop a special-recipe, low-fat hot dog (in chicken, beef or veggie varieties) which you can pair with either a white, brown or sesame bun.
As you’d expect, Mustard is super-casual. The decor is heavy on the yellow with wooden crate tables and recycled denim cushions that the owners made themselves. You tick what you want from a menu checklist, pay, then pick your order up from the counter once it’s ready.
Mustard’s hot dogs don’t have the characteristic, juicy meatiness of a big fat American Ball Park brand hot dog, but this milder flavour means that they can take even more artistic licence when it comes to the toppings.
They offer five signature hot dog varieties which pair the humble hot dog with unusual toppings like caramelised fruit and feta or tobiko (flying fish roe) and kimchi.
Fusion food lovers must try the Yoshi at least once. If you’ve only ever enjoyed tobiko and nori in a California roll, now’s the time to try them as hot dog condiments. But it doesn’t stop there. The Yoshi hot dog is filled to the brim with a host of exotic Asian flavours – from Japanese sweet omelette (tamago) to kimchi to wakame (seaweed) to a spicy sauce.
Apologies for the slightly blurry photo, but this combination is best expressed visually.
If you possess a less adventurous palate, you might be happier with a more conventional combination such as the Tasty Root, topped with caramelised onions grilled mushrooms, Swiss cheese and aioli. Or, you can customise your own hot dog to include the exact mix of sauces, veggies and cheeses you want.
You can upgrade your hot dog to a combo meal to include sweet potato fries or normal fries if you prefer.
But what really took me by surprise were the “Wild Bites” on Mustard’s menu such as the Molten Peppers and the Cheesy Dates. I never would have expected these kinds of items at a hot dog shop, but they were both unusual and delicious, which means a two thumbs up from me. The Cheesy Dates were the perfect combination of sweet and savoury and similar to a tapas item I’ve enjoyed in Spain before, reflecting the Spanish heritage of one of the owners.
The Molten Pepper was a roasted red bell pepper was stuffed with minced beef, mushrooms and covered with a cheesy bechamel sauce. It wasn’t the most attractive dish, but it was tasty, great value at only AED 12, and could have made a hearty dinner on its own.
The dessert menu is simple – you have the choice of only one. A banoffee pie – bananas, toffee, whipped cream and delicate shavings of chocolate on top.
Verdict: The outlandish hot dog combinations are perfect for fusion food lovers with adventurous palates. Great setting for a casual outdoor meal at JLT.
Note to self: Fun for novelty value, but I still prefer my traditional hot dog. But the molten pepper and cheesy dates… mmmm.
Dubai Gate 1, Cluster Q
Jumeirah Lake Towers
Tel: 04 800 6878
Chow for now!