I apologize for that corny title, I really do. It’s all I could think of when I thought hot dogs. You understand, don’t you?
I have been a fan of Short Leash Hot Dogs ever since I tried their glorious hot dogs over a year and a half ago. All of their staff members, and especially owners Brad and Kat Moore, have always been amazingly friendly and truly genuine in their appreciation of their loyal customers. When word got out a few months back that they were finally going to be opening an honest-to-God restaurant in downtown Phoenix, I was damn excited! Well, last night was finally their big day — on National Hot Dog Day, no less!
The Short Leash restaurant is called Sit…Stay, named after their popular Friday night outings which included all manner of interesting new dishes, some of which have found a permanent home on the Sit…Stay restaurant menu. Yum!
Sit…Stay opened at 5pm on Tuesday July 23rd, and thankfully their new location at 110 E. Roosevelt St. downtown has a dedicated parking lot. Venturing downtown can be a bit of a pain in the butt because of the parking situation, but no troubles here! The restaurant is located just to the east of 1st St, right on Roosevelt. Pulling into the parking lot, I could see that the line of people waiting to get inside was already several people deep outside the front entrance. Inside, there were even more people already seated and enjoying their food, or checking out the new digs while waiting to be seated.
Adorable artwork abounds, most of the pieces having to do with dogs (yay!). Be sure to check out the wall opposite the restrooms, it’s full of tiny clipboards with photos of Short Leash’s past Featured Dogs of The Week, with empty ones to add more. I was super excited to find my dog’s photo on the wall! Ain’t she cute?
The dining area is small but not cramped, thanks to the high ceiling and plenty of light from the windows overlooking Roosevelt. It was sure lively, and thankfully nobody seemed put out to be waiting. Waiting for a table was infinitely more bearable with Brad wandering around the dining area offering piping hot mini corn dogs to the guests not yet seated. Genius move — the corn dogs were delicious as always, and only made me more hungry!
My boyfriend was kind enough to accompany me on this hot dog adventure, and while we waited, we browsed the menu. What a cute idea! The menus were cleanly designed card stock sheets attached to clipboards. I do wonder how long this novel idea will last, and if they will eventually revert to a more standard menu design. I was excited to see what new menu options were available beyond their usual hot dogs and corn dogs from the Short Leash truck menu, and there were plenty of new dishes to choose from. Some of the new dishes were from their ever-changing Sit…Stay Friday nights, and others from the food truck’s Sunday brunch menu. Awesome!
After having some of the mini corn dog samples, we were hungry for more. The mini corn dog bites appetizer included a mix of 6 mini corn dogs, half of them being the jalapeno cheese-filled dogs. It was sort of like Russian roulette, only more fun and a lot less deadly, trying to guess which one was the jalapeno cheese-filled dog before you bit into it. They’re awfully good with lots of mustard!
My usual order when I hit up Short Leash is the Lady served with a chicken dog, easy on the cream cheese. I was half tempted to get what I knew was a stellar choice, but I couldn’t come down to their new restaurant without trying something new. I settled on the Mac Daddy with a chicken dog. The Mac Daddy is the ultimate in stuff-your-face goodness. Your choice of dog, with homemade beef and bean chili, all topped with tasty mac and cheese? You betcha. It was super good and super filling. I had the choice of chips or a side salad, and I opted for the salad, with good reason.
My boyfriend is a sucker for the jalapeno cheese dogs, so he ordered up the Crispy Dog. He was expecting just one dog, but instead the order consisted of three big jalapeno and cheese stuffed dogs, all of them wrapped up in crunchy fried tortillas. The spicy avocado cream sauce that came on the side was a solid choice to dip ’em in. He put in a valiant effort but only managed to scarf down two of the three dogs.
Our server was downright pro, you’d never have guessed that he was trying to work in a room that was constantly stuffed to capacity for several hours. The staff members were all super friendly and the hefty crowd size didn’t seem to faze them at all. Gold stars all around.
Sit…Stay is definitely on my radar as a place I must return to. It’s all the kickassery of the Short Leash truck, but coupled with cozy ambiance, drinks (did I mention they have a bar that serves beer and wine? Score!), more food options, and more friendly staff members. They really make you feel at home.
Congrats, Brad and Kat! I wish you many more years of success with all of your endeavors.