Hot Dog Factory, Smyrna GA

Here’s a little place on Spring Road in Smyrna that I noticed a couple of months ago and returned to try. It’s in a small strip mall that came up in the 1980s a few paces away from that Dairy Queen which has been on Spring Road forever, and which used to be the home of the first Pizza Hut delivery-only outlet that I remember seeing. I certainly enjoy hot dogs, and there are admittedly better in Cobb County, but this is still a fun place, and worth stopping by if you might be in the area. They have just enough original spirit to keep things interesting and entertaining, and the food is pretty tasty, too.

The theme at the Hot Dog Factory is “under construction,” with hard hats, gears, yellow diamond signs and “do not cross” tape. It’s actually quite incredibly cute, and I think kids might get a kick out of it. It’s really interesting to see a small startup business like this invest so much in their design. It looks ready-to-repackage and franchise, but I think the chili needs a little more work before they’re quite ready to grow. They have eleven different dogs on the menu. Six are “classics,” simple things that are each under $2.50 apiece, but it’s the five “factory dogs,” priced between $2.80 and $3.50, where the fun lies.

I ordered an “Ay Chihuahua!,” which is described as a “taco in a bun.” This is a Hebrew National beef dog wrapped in bacon and buried under pinto beans, cheese sauce, pico de gallo, relish, jalapenos, mustard, ketchup and mayonnaise. It honestly never occurred to me to have pinto beans as a hot dog topping before, but it all worked really well.

I also had a chili and slaw dog that was quite disappointing by comparison. The chili just tasted like the most boring of canned brown stuff, but the slaw was not bad. I really should have tried one of the other factory dogs. The fries and onion rings, sadly, are from bags, but for the same price, guests could have a mollette instead. This is a grilled, open face hoagie roll with refried beans, cheese, guacamole and sour cream.

Overall, I enjoyed a reasonably priced and tasty little lunch. It’s not really destination dining, but it’s a little bit different, and certainly worth a visit should you be in the neighborhood and in the mood for dogs.