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Dec 9, 2004 08:35 PM

Taylor Brothers Hot Dogs - Watsonville

  • m

Could someone give me a reveiw of this place?

Taylor Brothers Hot Dogs
336 Union St, Watsonville, CA 95076

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  1. I live in Santa Cruz and haven't been, but do make it out to that area now and then.

    How and what have you heard about it?? I'll post a report if I eventually go...

    3 Replies
    1. re: Carb Lover

      I really don't know anything about the place. I just saw it listed in the yellow pages. I just moved back to Santa Cruz after eight years in L.A.. While down south, I became interested in hot dog stands. Other than Hot Dog on a Stick and Wienerschnitzel (neither of which excite me), this is the only hot dog place I've found in Santa Cruz county. I'll take a drive down to Watsonville some weekend to try it out.

      There used to be a place in Capitola Village called "H. Diggity's." They served fantastic potato latkas. Boy, do I miss those.

      1. re: Matt

        Welcome back to SC! Coincidentally, my hubby and I moved here about 4 mos. ago after living in LA for 3 yrs. Not knowing quite where to go for good chow at first, I saw only bleakness (and taqueria after taqueria).

        Fortunately, I've discovered a number of dive-ish to cozy places that I like (scroll down for previous posts) and have stopped comparing SC to LA in terms of ethnic food and # of choices. I'm converting over to organic products and detoxing from LA junk food. Haven't felt this healthy in a while. If you're a meat lover (which I am), then Shopper's Corner meat counter is the best!

        Not a big hot dog fan, so never tried any of the legendary wiener places in LA. Only had a Dodger dog at the stadium once, which was actually kinda tasty. Sounds like Taylor Bros. is worth checking out. Please post a report after you go, as well as any other discoveries you make in your reacquaintance w/ the area...nice to have another SC poster on board.

        1. re: Carb Lover

          Don't know if the current situation is still the same but Taylor Bros in Watsonville used to be the same owners as Taylor's Hot Dogs in downtown Visalia. Same weiners, same chili recipe.

    2. This was a must-eat on a weekly basis if you grew up in Watsonville. Chili was basic and smoothered the dog. Onions were a must, as was mustard. Plain bun. Yumm. Wonder if my memory serves me well, haven't had one in many many years---in fact heading south tomorrow, so will try to get by, try one and post.

      1 Reply
      1. re: christinet

        Ah yes, the sacrifices we make for our fellow hounds.

        Finally gave up here in the central Valley trying to find something decent, went on a mission comparing Hebrew National and Miller's grilled on the BBQ, cross referenced with 3-4 of the commercial canned chili offerings. IIRC, one of the two dogs was a little more salty, the quality of the varieties of canned chili were lacking to say the least. May have to go back and try the dogs with homemade.

        Caveat: haven't been in a while but there is a place in DT Fresno called Coney Island, used to be the best around.

      2. I called Taylor's and they are open 10am to midnight. Closed on Sundays. I'll try to make it down there this week.

        I did find another hot dog place in the Santa Cruz area. It's called "Li'l Coney Island." It's in one of those kiosks on Pacific Avenue. They have an all-beef dog that is ok but worth going out of your way for. If I ever went back, I'd try something else on their menu.

        1. I got down to Taylor Bros. last Saturday. It's small building with a cool neon "Hot Dogs" sign on the roof. You order at a window. There is no seating except for a couple of benches. It's been open since 1954.

          The menu has the "Hormel" logo on it. They sell hot dogs, chips, and drinks. Hot dogs are $1.00. Chips are 40 cents. Coffee is 25 cents. Sadly, their soft drinks are all Pepsi products and they don't sell root beer.

          The hot dogs didn't seem any different than the kind you can buy in a supermarket. Not bad, but nothing exceptional. As toppings, they offer mustard, relish, onion, and chilli. The chilli was mildly spicy and did not overwhelm the flavor of the hot dog.

          Unless you are really into visiting old hot dog stands, Tayor Bros. is not worth a special trip to Watsonville. But, if you do find yourself in Watsonville and are in the mood for an inexpensive chilli dog, it's not a bad way to go.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Matt

            I saw that retro-looking corner stand when we were in downtown Watsonville to eat at El Alteno (scroll up for report). Didn't have a chance to stop and see the menu but did notice the Hormel logo from a distance. Dogs don't sound too exciting, but at least it was a cheap meal, I guess. Chips for 40 cents and coffee for 25 cents is rarely found these should be featured in a book or something.

            FWIW, hubby and I found ourselves at Wienerschnitzel in SC on Soquel the other day. We were walking to Shopper's Corner and it happened to be on the way. Never have eaten there before, but was starved and lured in by the 99 cent polish sausage sandwich banner. Served on sliced rye w/ lots o' mustard and pickles--not half bad for a quickie, junk food lunch. But stay away from the small limp fries.

            1. re: Carb Lover

              Here's a freebie, if you get the urge again before the end of the month.


              1. re: Carb Lover

                I find that the best thing to get at Wienerschnitzel is the all-beef dog and the corn dog(although they are far from being the best I've ever had). You're right about the fries!

                I'll continue my search for the best dog in Santa Cruz. So far, Paula's on Portola is the best I've found. Carpo's is in 2nd place. Too bad there isn't a really great hot dog stand here. We have too many taqurias for sure.


              Okay I used to come here back in the day when cruising Watsonville was done on Thursday nights and it was mandatory to stop at Taylor's, back then It was right behind the Police Station so most people will park down the street run up get their dogs and leave, guess hanging out at the Police Station back door wasn't cool. Still back then the Chili Dogs were off the HOOK and cost was very cheap!

              Now many and I mean many years later they're just so-so! I thought this place closed down because when I would pass the Police Station they were no wheres to been seen until my niece told me they had moved and I needed to try the dogs here, because they were the best chili dogs around. I told her, we used to come way back before she was a gleam in my brothers eye.

              Back then there were only 2 Dogs on the menu it was a Chili Dog or a Mustard Dog and you add the mustard, they carried no catchup so it was not an option. Now you have an option of dogs, condiments, chips, sodas and even catchup.

              We came here a couple of weeks ago just to see how much they had changed and what a change! I was told the Chili was still the original recipe, someone lied to me! It is not and after many years you still remember that taste, just like Mom's cooking it's a taste you never forget.

              That being said the dogs are just dogs the wieners have to be the thinnest ones I've ever seen, the chili was tasteful but not that taste I remembered. I can probably make chili just as good or better, if I didn't hold back with the spices. The serving of chili is barely worth the $1.40 they charge you and since there wasn't enough chili on the dog so I had to throw the excess bun away since there is no reason to eat just bread.

              But for those who rave about this place, I can see them doing it. It's cool to have an off the hook place in your neighborhood, but they never tasted the way it used to be, so how would they know how an off the hook chili dog really taste if they never experience one!

              So I don't see another visit to this place because it's not the same place I remember. This is just an average place with potential.

              1 Reply
              1. re: killarshark

                I remember when the hot dogs at Taylor's cost .25 cents each. The chili sauce was the best. Something has changed. What happened? The flavor of the chili sauce is not the same as it used to be. I haven't gone to the Hot Dog stand in many years. I will always remember that distinct delicious flavor. My sister told me it was not the same. I guess the recipe has been lost or altered. I hope they never close down. It brings back good memories. I will stop by from time to time even if the recipe is not the same. I like the flavor of the steamed hot dogs they are not too salty tasting and the size is perfect. Thank You, Taylor Bros. for staying in business you are part of my childhood.

                Taylor Bros Hot Dogs
                336 Union St, Watsonville, CA 95076