I admit it, I love hot dogs. I own this PBS documentary about hot dogs in America that talks about the history and popularity of hot dogs, regional variations, and popular hot dog joints across the United States.
That doesn’t mean the Hot Dog Factory got a mention on the show – it didn’t – but what I’m leading up to here is that I got a teaser of all the kinds of hot dogs out there, including the Slaw Dog. That’s a hot dog with coleslaw. Don’t say “ew!” Don’t say ew unless you’ve tried it, okay.
And you can try one at the Hot Dog Factory! This is where I had my first, thanks to their menu that offers variations normally associated with different regions. They had the standard dog, chili dog, Chicago style with the pickle wedge and celery salt, NY deli mustard and kraut…and so on.
My stomach barely has room for one dog or just chili cheese fries, but I usually order one dog and french fries, and I *want* to order two dogs and french fries. Sometimes life can be unfair that way.
Oh, and all seating is outdoors. You order at a walk-up counter outside and can eat it as some small tables. Not good if it’s raining, not that I’ve been rained on before. I can just tell.
Hot Dog Factory
The Bayside is close enough to the tourist tracks in Morro Bay to be a convenient dinner spot, but just far enough from the tourist tracks that they won’t find it!
This is good news if you want a pleasant dinner without the Embarcadero prices and without the overbearing tourists wandering around looking for…
“burgers ‘n shit.” — yes, I overheard a father say this to his family.
The atmosphere is inviting and cozy, like you’re in an old beach house. The Cafe itself is right on the Bay, and within the State Park. Beautiful surroundings of both water and trees.
We ordered the fresh salmon, which I felt was underwelming – perfectly average – and the seafood pasta, which was absolutely delicious. Piles of white fish, salmon, mussels, clams, in a cream sauce and lots of parmesan. Also there was a good bowl of clam chowder, and a simple side salad. I regret not ordering the fish and chips in place of the salmon – the plates I saw going to other tables looked really good.
The prices were very reasonable, given the quality, the portions and the ambience. That family I overheard closer to town probably did end up getting their overpriced burgers ‘n sh*t, and paid the same we did for our seafood dinners.
Edit: I went there again over memorial weekend 2007. I can still recommend the seafood pasta and the fish and chips. I can now also recommend the dish called Bayside Steamers. It’s in the the appetizer section, but if it’s just you eating it, it’s a full meal. It’s a large plate piled high with mussels, clams, scallops, shrimps, lobster, crab legs, and a delicious lobster broth. It also comes with a basket of bread to soak up that lovely broth. A bargain at $19.
Also note: they do not take reservations! Get there early, or be happy to wait. There is a friendly striped kitty who snoozes on the wood fence surrounding the restaurant that might keep you company.