Tubby Dog turns 7 years old
Calgary’s favourite hot dog joint still going strong
There aren’t many small businesses that have had such a resounding impact on Calgary’s food scene, or any area for that matter, as Tubby Dog.
To be fair though, there haven’t really been many small businesses like Tubby Dog over the last seven years.
On Sept. 30, Tubby celebrated another milestone in its short yet historic lifespan. It isn’t a stretch to say that Tubby revolutionized how Calgarians and visitors view hot dogs, going from untouchable tubes of mystery meat to being affectionately referred to as the city’s favourite heart attack.
Tubby himself, Jon Truch, was celebrating the anniversary of his restaurant with his family. Even with an appearance on Food Network’s You Gotta Eat Here as well as Sara Hughes’ short documentary Tubby Doc, Truch is still humble about the success he’s had.
“Nothing ever goes as planned,” Truch said of running Tubby Dog. “This is the nature of the game in restaurants. You take everyday as it is.”
Truch also admits that one of the biggest highlights is making it this far. “Ten restaurants open every week in this city, and 20 close every month. I think that’s the biggest thing, that we’re still open and people love us.”
A huge understatement given the fierce loyalty Calgarians feel towards Tubby Dog. While serving hot dogs, the 17th Avenue fixture also frequents as a live music venue.
Tuesday nights are Taco Tuesdays, which have become increasingly popular lately, and Truch revealed that Tubby Burgers are the next project on the menu.
To help the party, house DJs Carl Cassidy and DJ Tubbs were spinning vinyl near the arcade machines.
Wine Ink, a neighbour down the block from Tubby Dog, was offering free wine pairings with the mini dogs being offered.
Not to be outdone, Tubby had the biggest birthday present to its customers with its weekly special Tubby the VII: Seven dogs packed into one bun for the adventurous foodies the restaurant has attracted.
Even with how big the hot dog joint has become, Truch hasn’t forgotten his humble beginnings. He talked about his favourite special dog that Tubby Dog offers which is named The Leah after his mother.
The July monthly dog is just like the hot dog his mother made, with a bed of baked beans, mustard, ketchup, a slice of cheese and a side of Ripple chips.
With the kind of honest effort Truch puts into Tubby Dog, combined with the love that this city shares with him for the restaurant, Calgary can feel safe that they will have their favourite comfort food around for years to come.