When you want a Q-Dawg there is only one place to go; YaYa's. This place sure wasn't on my radar screen but it's just the kind of place we have enjoyed visiting. They serve bar-BQ, grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, and Q-dawgs. A Q-dawg is a hot dog with kraut topped with pulled pork bar-BQ and sauce. When I talked about this to the folks in the office I got mixed reactions. I admit the concept makes one pause and think a little. It's probably not for everyone, just those who like good food. Of course you don't have to order a Q-dawg; you can get lots of other "samichs", or ribs on Friday or Saturday. For the real adventurer they also have a "nacho Q-Dawg", a Q-dawg topped again with nacho cheese sauce and peppers.
YaYa's is located on highway 119 about midway between Alabaster and Montevallo right in an area known as "Crossroads". We had to look for it because we drove right past it without seeing it the first time. YaYa's is a little trailer parked next to the building at the Pitstop gas station right at the crossroads intersection. We were told about this place by a friend of Robert's, who is the owner of Crossroads Cottage, Home of Forgotten Arts, which is right behind Yaya's.
When you get to YaYa's it doesn't take long before you encounter the proprietor, Tracy Hale who introduced himself to us saying; "Hi, I'm YaYa". This guy is an EXTROVERT and a delight to talk to. He see's himself as not only being in the food business but also the people business. He has quite a sense of humor which can be seen when you read some of his signs such as his posted hours of operation posted as:
MONDAY 10:57 - 3:37
TUESDAY 10:42 - 3:52
WEDNESDAY 10:50 - 4:51
THURSDAY 10:51 - 5:17
FRIDAY 10:37 - 5:67 (This must be another time zone!)
SATURDAY 10:39 - 6:39
He tells you the amount due for your order in "U.S. Currency".
We placed our orders and waited a few minutes while it was put together. We spent that time taking a few pictures and talking with our fellow customers. When we had our food we moved to the dining room, the picnic table under a beach umbrella just to the right of his trailer. I had told him about our mission, to eat at all the hot dog restaurants in the Birmingham area, and about the blog; so he came out and joined us at the table.
He started this business with a trailer restaurant that he took to festivals and other events but decided to find a permanent location so he could do a more consistent business. This is definitely a low budget location and operation but it's not low on quality, enthusiasm or service. They also have very good fried pies... not the factory ones like you get at Micky D's or Milo's... but real fried pies.
Now a few subjective observations:
* The barBQ sauce is a mild tomato based sauce with a good flavor.
* Their soft drinks are canned drinks kept in a cooler on ice!
* We agreed that this was the best value of ANY place we have visited so far.
* You just have to like this guy.
* While good, the Q-dawg wasn't the most flavorful samich I've had... I think a dash of salt would bring out more flavor.
* I have no doubts that I'll make a return visit to YaYa's.
* I'd like to see them serve Golden Flake chips or Zapps.
These hot dog guys like to play with spelling. A couple of weeks ago we went to "Sam's Super Samwichs" and now we go to YaYa's that shows "samichs" on the menu. That's fine... after all there's nothing high folutin bout hot dogs.