Bolstered by block-long lineups during the Winter Olympics, Vancouver’s Japadog is eyeing expansion to New York and Los Angeles, its president said yesterday.

Noriki Tamura, who heads the company that owns the popular Japanese-style hotdog stand, said twice as many Japadogs than usual were sold during the Games.

“We had loads of customers, probably a hundred people in line,” he said.

Tamura said the acceptance by visitors signalled the franchise, which currently has two stands in Vancouver, is ready to go international. He picked New York and Los Angeles as prime markets for hotdogs with seaweed and terimayo sauce.

Within five years, Tamura said, he would like to have 100 stands across North America and Japan.

“I would like to try because I like a challenge,” he said. “There are lots of hotdog stands in Vancouver, but everything is similar. We (offer) different tastes.”

During the Games, Canada’s first gold medallist on home soil, moguls skier Alex Bilodeau, and U.S. figure skater Evan Lysacek were added to the list of celebrities to have eaten at Japadog, which posts photos of celebrity customers. They include Ice Cube, Steven Seagal and chef Anthony Bourdain.

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