The space at 2677 Geer Rd. in Turlock that was once the home of Mexican popsicle shop Paleteria y Nieveria La Jungla Michoacana will soon be occupied by another colorful tenant, as a group of childhood friends will open up a corndog shop at the location later this year.
The name of the new business will be Corn’d, and they won’t be serving up just any corndogs. Rome Esho is one of the co-founders and explained that they will be offering Korean-style corndogs, describing some of them as “mutants.”
The unique concept comes from the minds of Esho and his two friends, experimenting with different toppings and fillings just as a fun way to pass the time and fill their stomachs while on getaway trips.
“Our group of friends always travel everywhere, and we always just made corndogs wherever we went,” Esho said. “One of our favorite spots is Groveland and getting cabins up there. So, for two and a half years, this is where we got the recipe down. We would make corn dogs and we would just eat corn dogs all day, and then we would make weird corn dogs. I mean, we just like corndogs. Who doesn’t like corndogs?”
Esho may be a familiar name to the Turlock community, as he is the owner of Xhale Ultra Hookah Lounge in Turlock and the original founder of Café Rome. He explained that the group was inspired to open their own business after trying similar shops during their travels.
So, what do these Korean corndogs consist of? Well, they can be made up of pretty much anything you want.
Corn’d will give customers the option to inject different cheeses, meats or chips in them and have other sweet or spicy toppings covering the outside batter. Additionally, there will be vegan, plant-based and gluten-free options.
“You select your meat, any cheeses, you'll get our batter on top of it and then you can pick your toppings, like potatoes, Rice Krispies, Hot Cheetos, and that's basically it,” Esho said. “I'm the type that every time I eat something, I mix ketchups and sauces. I'm weird like that. I'll even do ice cream with French fries. We took the Korean corndog and gave it a twist of our own.”
Esho and his two friends are from Turlock, so it only made sense for them to open up their first location in their hometown.
“We kind of want to do something for Turlock because we've always gone out of town for stuff,” Esho said. “Everybody tends to take off and post places on Instagram and even Tik Tok nowadays and are always saying, ‘Oh, we have nowhere to go,’ so we want to bring something like that to town and bring value here.”
Aside from corndogs, Corn’d will also be offering a variety of drinks, most of them being made from fruits from local farms. They also hope to cater to children with stickers and toys.
“Corndogs are such a fun and good food, and we’re just adding to that,” Esho said. “I want this to be a fun place that people need to experience for themselves.”
Corn’d does not have an official opening date, as Esho and his business partners are waiting on some final permits to be approved by the City of Turlock. Nevertheless, the team will provide the latest updates on their Instagram at @corndkitchen or head to their website at www.corndkitchen.com.