First there was the Kogi Truck, then Kalbi Burger. Now, the latest in the wave of Korean fusion is King Hot Dog, a hot dog shop on Western and First.
I love hot dogs, but I've never been a huge fan of the Korean fusion movement, so I was both excited and skeptical on my first trip to King Dog.
Let's start with the hot dogs themselves, since dog meat is important to me. The dogs are huge, one -third pounders. Their flavor is very good with some nice spice, but they don't have any snap at all. These are pretty much no-casing dogs. They are served on a toasted sweet-Hawaiian type bun, which is soft and buttery and goes well with the dog.
In typical Korean-fusion style, they are loaded up with toppings and sweet sauce. In fact, the things are so big and messy that they give you plastic gloves to eat them with. The Kalbi Dog (spelled with a K on the menu but with a G on the wall) has kalbi, cheese and sweet sauce. The kalbi is very good and despite being a bit overly sweet, the whole thing works pretty well. We also tried a Kogi Dog, with bulgogi on it which had a nice spice and was a little less sweet than the Kalbi Dog.
Sides were a bit lackluster. Fries were thick and hand cut and looked great, but weren't crispy enough. Onion rings were pretty standard. They also have tater tots and spiral potato chips, and they serve burgers as well as dogs.
Overall, despite the sweet sauces and snapless dogs, the things came together pretty well. Given that it's in the neighborhood, I will likely be back. It's not destination dining, but if you're in the mood for a hot dog in Koreatown, it's a good bet.
King Hot Dog
151 N. Western Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90004