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Dog People – Franks and Frites

31 Aug


Phone: (614) 772-1015

The name speaks for itself with this food truck so it is not too hard to figure out the menu is hot dogs (and other encased meats) and fries, sometimes in fancy poutine form. The business launched summer of 2015 and has been seen at Land Grant Brewing and Four String Brewing with some frequency. We talked to the owners to learn a bit more about their concept.

1) Tell us about your team / the owners.

We are a husband and wife team that moved to Columbus in 2011.

2) What inspired you to get started and why hot dogs and fries as your mainstays?

Nate worked in kitchens for years but was discouraged that the only interaction with customers was when people weren’t happy with their food. He was looking for a more direct relationship with his customers and wanted to see people enjoying what they were eating. Our plan from the beginning was to team up with local bars and breweries and we designed our concept and menu around something we were both passionate about and paired well with Columbus’s local craft beers.

3) Your name is great, how did that come together?

We thought for weeks about something that would rhyme with “franks” or “dogs” and nothing was inspiring us. One night we were sitting in our living room with our two dogs and it came to Nate- we’re not cat people, we’re dog people. It was a perfect fit for us as business as well as who we are as people.

4) What has been your biggest good and bad surprise starting into the world of Mobile Food?

The best thing has been the public interactions. People have been very receptive and we have developed great relationships with regular customers and have loved receiving feedback and suggestions from our customers. There haven’t been any of what we would consider “bad surprises,” but of course there is a learning curve and working our way through the hiccups and glitches that come along with any new venture.

5) Anything new on the horizon for you – new menu items, winter menu, etc.

We’re happy with our base menu but are always looking for fun new specials. Our beer brat with local beer has been very popular! Our specials board is constantly evolving while we like to keep favorites around.

6) What is the best way for people to find you out and about?
We are on Twitter and Instagram as DogPeopleCbus, and Facebook as Dog People Franks & Frites.

7) What did you do pre-food truck?

Jenn is still a manager at Starbucks and is able to work that schedule around food truck events. Nate’s history is in kitchens and has also worked in marketing for several years.




Schmidt’s Sausage Truck

30 May


Cuisine: Bavarian

Street Food Finder

In 1886, the Schmidt family started selling sausages and other meats in Columbus. In September 2012, Schmidt’s launched their Sausage Truck. Although the truck was new, Schmidt’s was not new to mobile food. Schmidt’s sold sausages from carts in the early days and they have been selling their wares from the Ohio State Fair for over a century. In between the early days and today, they also launched the city’s most iconic restaurant, Schmidt’s Sausage Haus. So it seems fitting that Schmidt’s would finally take to the streets with a few of their fan favorites.


The menu features Bavarian favorites including: Bahama Mama, Bratwursts, Knockwursts, Fat Daddy’s (Thickly sliced, spicy German balogna sandwiches), Frankfurters and German Potato Salad. And have no fear, the truck carries as many cream puffs as they can squeeze in. Throughout the year, seasonal daily specials are offered such as soups and main dishes. Occasionally a special cream puff flavor will find a way on the menu as well.


I’ll back track a bit to the Bahama Mama. If you are new to Columbus then you may not have heard of Schmidt’s most famous, signature dish. It is a mildly spicy sausage made with a mix of beef and pork with a touch of hickory smoke. If you can’t make it to German Village, a Schmidt’s Sausage Truck (we will see a second launch this year) will bring it to you.


Bunny & Michelle’s Brats and Such

6 Apr


Bunny & Michelle’s Brats and Such
2480 Brice Rd (Home Depot)
614 899 1188
Monday to Sunday 10 am to 5 pm
Other locations
6333 Cleveland Ave (Home Depot)
Berliner Park for events

Let us take a moment to pop into the Columbus Street Food Wayback Machine. Mobile food as we know it occurred in phases and waves. Street Food 1.0 started on or about 2002, with the rise of Taco Trucks. Street Food 2.0 included the early adopters of Street Food: Ray Ray’s, Mojo Tago Tacos, Cheesy Truck, Short North Bagel Deli, Yellow Boy Polish Boys and a few others as well as several vendors that did not quite last a season. Street Food 3.0 started in 2012, with the large explosion of food trucks in Columbus with new and creative menus and a business model of hitting multiple lunch locations during the week and established bars and festivals on the evenings and weekends. This year we see how that model grows and evolves and we watch to see if owners crunch the numbers to see if they can make a profit and continue with a sustainable business.

Before all of the above, we had food carts and a few other mobile food vendors in the 1980’s and 1990’s. It is a tough business and many don’t make it past a summer. Bunny & Michelle’s has been serving for over a dozen years and they are still at it.

Bunny is the mom. She was out of work. She took what she had, invested it in a trailer and started to see if she could make a living behind the grill. She added her daughter Michelle to the mix and hit the road but did not get far. After a few years, they planted their trailer at the Home Depot in Reynoldsburg and have been there for about 13 years. They added a second trailer and set it up at another Home Depot. Now they are working on a third trailer to do softball tournaments and other events at Berliner Park.


The menu is simple – hot dogs, brats, gyros and other simple fare all cooked on a giant flattop grill. They do a couple of extras which make a difference – the buns are lightly toasted, the hot dogs are split down the middle for cooking and to allow a cavern to hold coney sauce. They offer the same simple menu every day and aim for those that want a quick bite and consistency. They also jumped on board early to offer credit card sales years ago. So, to those that wonder if this is a fad, a trend or here to stay – over a decade of business indicates this can be a career for some.