Monday, February 15, 2010

Parkersburg HDJ Review - Der Dog Haus

I've driven by this place on 7th Street a bunch of times, but not until it showed up on the "101 Unique Places to Dine in WV" list did I ever consider stopping in. I can't really explain why, but despite its name it just didn't look like a HDJ to me. But on a recent trip to P-Burg I thought I would take a chance and since it was on "The List" I figured even if it didn't have hot dogs I could still get something interesting to eat. So I took the completely unprecedented (and, I thought, somewhat pretentious) step of calling ahead for a reservation. I was surprised when they took my name and told me that they would reserve a table. When I showed up on a Friday evening to hordes of hungry diners waiting for a seat I was glad I had called ahead. Still not sure that it was a real HDJ, I was gaining confidence that it was a good place to eat.
In the few moments that I had to wait on my table, I looked over the daily specials written on the board in the packed waiting area: Salmon cakes & oysters? Really?
Really. And how about sweet & sour Brussels sprouts as a side? The, I mean Der, Dog Haus has them.
Soon I was being shown to my seat in the PHS room (that's Parkersburg High School for those of you not savvy). On the way to the PHS room, I am certain that I must have passed the PSHS (Parkersburg South High School) room because anyone familiar with P-Burg knows that not giving equal time to each high school would be tantamount to stealing pigs and might start a war right there in your eating establishment. I was surprised at how big this place is.
As soon as I opened the menu I realized that this was a real HDJ: The first section of the menu is all about hot dogs. The fact that the rest of the menu look like anything but a HDJ menu is beside the point. In addition to the aforementioned specials, Der Dog Haus has lots of interesting food: seafood, salads, steak, ribs and much more.
But hot dogs is what we're about and hot dogs were the reason for my visit, so hot dogs is what I will now write about:
The first unfortunate thing about the hot dog part of the menu was that there is no "everything" dog. Too many toppings are offered and most of them are unnecessary: relish, cheese, kraut and grilled peppers. Thankfully I was able to assemble a real WVHD from the options list.
My dog showed up on a New England Style bun (minus 1/2 point), but otherwise was a good solid effort. The sauce (chili) was reminiscent of DQ Coney Sauce with lots of meat added. The slaw was fantastic in texture and taste, but a little too wet for its own good. The onions were very coarsely chopped. The mustard was yellow.
I'll give Der Dog Haus a solid 3.5 Weenie rank for its hot dog. If I were rating on a different scale, perhaps "Spoons" or something like that, I might give it a 4 or 4 1/2 for its overall quality, selection and service.


Unknown said...

Spoons? Don't you mean forks, tee hee? Then again, it's in Parkersburg, not some far away place like Florida or Myrtle Beach or other outlandish place, so it cannot be sirreee....

Unknown said...


You have let Stanton's bad attitude infect you.

The real problem is: It's too cold to eat out very often - we have to park far away from the door and Misty & I get too cold walking out and back. Therefore, we have been eating Lean Cuisines in the office. When we do brave the weather about once a week, we find ourselves going to one of our favorite spots because we miss them, but they have already been reviewed. Don't fret, though...spring will come and with it, some new local reviews. Eventually.

We did Aubrey's - that has to count for something.

Stanton said...

John, don't let Susan deter you from speaking the truth with her subjective characterizations

Susan: Excuses, excuses. Where is the sacrifice? Where is the commitment to your art?

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A. M. Underwood said...

My family and I are recent transplants to the Parkersburg area (but native WVians). When we first arrived and were looking for a good local place to eat, the response from all levels of society (all three here in P'burg) was the unanimous recommendation of Der Dog Haus.

We eat there at least twice a month now, it being the favored hot dog of both my wife and son. I really enjoy their rib eye steak, grilled outdoors year round.

They also have a WVU Room and a Sutton Room (?).

How can you not love a place that has fried bologna sandwiches on the menu?

Jason Johans said...

Big fan of your blog. I know this place is one of the "101 Unique Places to Dine in WV". My wife and I are starting a blog in which we will go and eat at all these places and write about our dining experiences.

We have not started yet, but plan to next week.

Kelsey said...

Der Daug Haus deserves a way better review than that. I have eaten for 10 years now. Their hot dogs are the best I have ever tasted in West Virginia. They grill the bun so that it is nice and crispy, and their hot dogs are grilled perfectly. Their choice of toppings are unique, but there are also ordinary toppings for those who are too skiddish to try something new. I know all of the waiters and waitresses there and they are all very caring people. The service is the best. Great food and great service, what could be better?