Most people prefer not to know what goes into regular hotdogs. But a small business on the plaza is willing to share all the intricate parts of the hotdogs they sell …
Most people prefer not to know what goes into regular hotdogs. But a small business on the plaza is willing to share all the intricate parts of the hotdogs they sell because their 'dogs are vegetarian.
O.G. Dogs is a mom and pop startup that opened under a bright red umbrella stand in July on the Plaza.
Leland and Allison Prival, who moved to Taos in December to teach classical ballet, were inspired by their 24-year-old son James who told the couple they needed to expand their horizons.
"Well there's nothing wrong with our horizons," Allison says she told her son. But he told her that they needed to do something of service or needed in the area. After some research, the couple found that Taos lacked any fast food that was also vegetarian. James developed the business plan, purchased the cart and named the company O.G. Dogs, which stands for "Outrageously Great."
James directs the baking process for the purple potato buns and trained the couple on credit card capability and salesmanship.
"We now work for our son," Allison exclaims. "We are his employees."
"He's managing and telling us what to do," Leland chimes in, "and we say 'Okay boss.'"
Ube cakes, a Filipino purple cake, inspired Allison to make the purple buns.
"When we lived in Los Angeles, we would do musical theater for children's birthday parties, many of them were Filipino," Allison explains. She started experimenting to make the perfect purple potato buns. It takes her 4 hours to make 30 buns.
Eight-year-old Joshua Irish and his mother Mary stopped to grab a hotdog and Joshua gave it two thumbs up. The taste and texture is very much like a conventional hot dog, but without the meat.
"It's really good," Mary Irish said. "I like the texture of the bread, it's not so filling like normal bread."
The Irish family were returning customers who have had the hot dogs before. Nearby shop owners are often the Prival's best customers, wanting to grab a quick, healthy five-dollar dog, according to Leland. The toppings include vegan mayonnaise, ketchup, mustard topped with carmelized onions and green chile.
One customer was well-known meat-eater and Taos Mayor Dan Barrone, who was hesitant but with some coaxing, gave it a try, Leland says.
"And he liked it," Leland said.
The cart is now on the Plaza only on Saturdays while the weather is good. At the height of business this summer, the sales were strong. During the Paseo art festival this past summer, they sold 82 hot dogs the first day of the event
During the winter and bad weather days, the couple will cater and do birthday parties with the mobile hot dog cart and perform musical theater parties or special events. The Privals continue to teach classical ballet at the Academy of Performing Arts when they aren't selling hot dogs. They can be reached at (818) 355-6607.
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