There’s an old phrase that says you can’t judge a book by its cover. That hold true for one popular downtown eatery that serves so much more than its name implies.

Capitol Dog, in the 100 block of High Street SE, looks like the typical Coney dog eatery on the outside, however step inside and visitors may be pleasantly surprised.

While the restaurant offers 12 different dogs from the regular old fashioned to gourmet Chicago or Greek, what sets the eatery apart is its selection of traditional Ukrainian foods and desserts.

“We are the only restaurant in Salem that provides American and Ukrainian food,” said owner Igor Slobodyan. “It’s just a different taste than anything out there and all served with Ukrainian hospitality.”

The menu offers many lunch choices with complete meals under $7. Most of the dishes are considered comfort foods in the former Soviet republic and as such, they may not be the most healthy option, but flavorful. There are Ukrainian raviolis served with butter sour cream and vinegar, pirozhkis, which are a breaded dish filled with potato, ground beef or cabbage or oven-baked cabbage rolls filled with ground beef and rice with a tomato sauce topping.

“The cabbage rolls are our most popular,” Slobodyan said. “It goes great with a bottle of Zhiguly Grande or Slavutich (beers).”

For someone not in the mood for a full meal, but something sweet, there are a variety of Ukrainian pastries and cakes, candies and wines for sale as well.