IT’S MESSY isn’t it, the waitress says as she passes by and looks down at the debris spread across my table, the smears on my fingers, the smudge of hot sauce that only later, much later, I’ll notice splodged on my fat face. Umm, I grunt as I glance down at my tie and wonder if that’s kimchi juice from today. Or if it’s always been there.

Throughout this meal the sun has been bouncing off Kilmarnock Road, through the plate-glass window and focusing its mighty rays on me. I am like a beetle under a magnifying glass. I’ve already moved seats once to escape the relentless heat haze. But it was too late. I should be wearing shorts, I realise. Like the rest of the dudes in here. Sipping away at million-calorie milk shakes, crunching giant onion rings, living high-fat booth life like only the truly skinny can really do.

But I’m trapped in a plastic M&S suit which the last time I checked was rated comfortable for chemical warfare, acceptable for North Korean nuclear fallout and even durable for the rigours of everyday working life, but completely hopeless in a passing Scottish summer.

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Still, mustn’t grumble. At least we are eating the appropriate food for the weather. I don’t know how much surfing they do on the White Cart River just over there, and the nearest beach I can think of is a fake tan joint on Argyle Street but you know where they are coming from. Chill, man, chill.

There’s a blurb on the website about travelling the world, yada yada, gourmet dogs, music scene … you get the drift. So chilled were they last time I was here that repeated attempts to get the attention of the serving dudes completely failed. They were deep in chat with customers, man, so I got up, went to the counter, rooted about there till I found the salt I wanted and went back to my booth. And nobody even noticed. Sheesh. It's better today.

What, then, about my Philly dog, consisting of Monterey Jack cheese, grilled onions and a “quality Bavarian smoked pork dog”, served on a torpedo bun from the Newlands Bakery just down the road?

Before we get into that there are the crispy chicken wings with hot sauce. These are good, even more so because I recently paid twice the price for the worst wings I have ever had at a new burger place on the Quay. Super-crisp batter here, then, moist and sweet chicken, a pinch of salt would have helped maybe, but definitely value and as chicken wings go, quality.

Earlier I searched the throwaway paper menu for just a simple plain hotdog with nothing on it. It wasn't there. But there are Garden State dogs with salted Chip Stix, Texan dogs with pulled pork (umm, do they make their own pulled pork here?), Nacho dogs with smashed tortilla chips, even the Beckenbauer, currywurst with sauerkraut.

The nearest to a plain vanilla includes onions, so I go for the Philly instead. This dog is pleasant enough – slightly smoked, even if buried under a pretty oily mix, and served on a fresh bun. The sausage skin’s a bit thick, though. It's exotic, maybe, but gourmet? There are quality hot dogs and sausages available nowadays, even ones made locally, and if the dog I've been eating is one of them then I’d kind of expect a bit of boasting about it. Never mind.

Luca and I had halloumi fries last time, cleanly cooked and mildly flavoured, as expected.

Hey. It’s hard not to like the feel of this place with its enthusiasm, little wooden booths and friendly young staff. Even better, it’s at least an attempt to find the next big thing, which in Glasgow should never be knocked as when it comes to restaurants we usually specialise in opening the last big thing.

Will this work? Hey, what do I know? A bit more information about the quality of their signature product, the sausage, could make it hot. As it stands, Surf Dogs is a little bit different, pretty good value and even some fun.

Surf Dogs

49 Kilmarnock Road, Glasgow (surfdogsglasgow.net, 0141 230 6392)

Menu: Hot dogs with some of the wildest and wackiest toppings you can think of. You’ll know if you're into that sort of thing. 4/5

Atmosphere: Shop-front feel with booths inside, a faint nod towards surfing culture and a laidback feel. 4/5

Service: Very friendly and very relaxed (maybe a bit too relaxed sometimes). 4/5

Price: Crispy chicken wings are a bargain at £4.50. Hot dogs start at £6 and can hit £9.50 but that's with fries. 3/5

Food: Are hot dogs the next big thing? These need a bit more finesse but they're not bad and served on a fresh bun. 6/10

Total: 21/30