Berkeley Dog to Take Place of Arriba Grill

Diane Jong/New University

Animal-style fries may have just lost its title as the king of overindulgence. Where Arriba Grill once stood now exists a new storefront with an exciting dining opportunity outside of the regular spread of Asian cuisine, sandwich shops and pizza places.

Looking through the windows that, until Saturday, were painted black, passers-by will now see an unexpected flash of brick walls and tile flooring, with UC Irvine, UC Davis and Cal State pennants, helmets and other assorted paraphernalia lining the walls. The tantalizing fragrance of fresh gourmet hot dogs and sausages, from the classic Frankfurter to the savory Smoked Apple Chicken sausage, wafts from the opening of the multicolored storefront.

Berkeley Dog also brings a new challenger to the world of french fries: the chipotle-bacon-cheese-topped-2-person-serving of Monster Fries.

Onlookers may have already noticed the Berkeley Dog restaurant — its name, no doubt, standing out considering its placement so close to the UCI campus. But diners shouldn’t think of this as a snub; Berkeley Dog takes its name from the Top Dog restaurant of Berkeley, a 40-year-old brick-and-mortar hot dog and sausage dining hot spot that has engrained itself in Berkeley culture. One of the owners commented to a customer during their soft opening this past Saturday, that “[he] hoped to open a Berkeley Dog at every UC campus.”

According to owners John and Patricia, Berkeley Dog: A Sausage Kitchen is set to open its doors for its grand opening on Thursday, May 12, serving an array of $3.85 gourmet hot dogs, along with special and unique toppings ranging from the usual cheese to the more unusual fried egg or kimchee.

Berkeley Dog sports the new Coca-Cola Freestyle machine, two tall red vending machines that allow customers to access any of over 100 Coke products, from Coke Vanilla to Grape Sprite, and for about $2 students get a 24-ounce cup to experiment with all the carbonated possibilities. Aside from sausages, the kitchen also sports a variety of fries, from chili to sweet potato, and of course the massive two-person serving that is the Monster Fries. There is also the wide array of mustards and ketchups to satisfy any palette.

Among the usual offerings of UTC and UCI Dining, Berkeley Dog offers up a variety of food that is decidedly unique and tasty. The price is right too – two people can dine on a side of fries, a drink and two gourmet sausages for less than $15. While no news of student deals have been announced as of yet, some of the staff commented that depending on the volume of UCI student patrons, there may be specials announced in the future, once the store has fully settled in. Until then, hungry diners should check out Berkeley Dog for its grand opening on Thursday.