Foodie favorite Dat Dog, a New Orleans-based hot dog and sausage restaurant, will open 25 restaurants in Houston through franchisee group B&G Food Enterprises, LLC. The first restaurant is scheduled to open in 2018 and will be the first Dat Dog in Texas.
There are no set locations at this time. Dat Dog uses recipes developed by its Executive Chef, Alex Ventura, as well as craft cocktails developed by its Beverage Director, Alexa Ballard.
Since launching its franchising program in January, Dat Dog is also set to open three restaurants in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, under its first wave of franchisees, David Halpern and Teva Sempel. The initial restaurant is scheduled to open late 2017 / early 2018. There are no set locations at this time. The franchisee group, known as Prime Dog, LLC, will be the first to open a Baton Rouge-based Dat Dog, a customized, creative eatery that gives back to the community. They also have their eyes set on potential future expansion into South Carolina and Texas
The restaurant is known for its unique, quirky combinations, with sausages made from crawfish, alligator, duck, in addition to the traditional beef wiener. Dat Dog features more than 30 toppings, including unconventional options like blackberry sauce, guacamole, and crawfish etouffee. The restaurant also offers vegetarian and vegan sausage options, in addition to the “Greenie Weenie”—a dog wrapped in lettuce instead of a toasted sourdough bun.
To keep putting a smile on the faces of its guests, Dat Dog regularly features art markets, trivia nights, fundraisers, special events and more. Led by restaurateur Greg Hamer Sr., B&G Foods operates over 100 Yum brand locations across Texas and Louisiana. Hamer is an Emeritus Director of the National Restaurant Association and a trustee of the NRA Education Foundation. His long tenure with the Louisiana Restaurant Association has seen him honored as President in 2000, a member of the LRA Hall of Fame, Active Member of the Year and Chapter President of the Year. During his due diligence of the restaurant, Hamer admits he and his son ate “just about everything on the menu”—landing on the Duck Sausage as his favorite.
“Dat Dog’s different. It’s a fresh concept, and we’re very excited to bring a little bit of offbeat New Orleans to Houston,” Hamer says.
“We couldn’t be more excited to be opening in Texas,” says Bill DiPaola, president & COO of Dat Dog Enterprises and a Certified Franchise Executive. “I know Houstonians will love our quirky, Hawaiian-shirt wearing culture— along with our crazy delicious dogs.”
Philanthropic giving and social good are built into Dat Dog’s DNA. The company regularly hosts fundraising events on- and off-site for causes of all kinds, especially those related to animal welfare, at-risk youth, and education. Dat Dog’s Houston locations will regularly host charitable events and fundraisers, in addition to responding directly to people in need.
For franchisees, Dat Dog will offer flexible concepts for restaurants, including indoor/outdoor dining, areas for live music, biergartens or art markets, endcaps, free-standing buildings, universities, or other retail environments. Dat Dog is looking to further expand in the Gulf South region, focusing on Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee and the Florida panhandle, in addition to already planned locations in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, Louisiana.