The Dog House

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The Dog Houses comprised a chain of very small restaurants around L.A., often on a piece of land that also held a large car wash.  I’m going to guess that was the idea.  Someone said, “Hey, let’s design a little restaurant that can fit in a spot that doesn’t seem big enough for a restaurant and where people have to wait around for their car to be washed.”  And then someone else said, “Uh, like a hot dog stand?”  And the first person said, “Kind of…but let’s make it a little more upscale so we’ll get the business of folks who think they’re too good to eat at a hot dog stand.”

At least, that seemed to be the premise, though I don’t think the one in the above photo was near a car wash.  It did however display uncommon courage by daring to sell hot dogs around the corner from Pink’s.  As you can see, a Dog House was a small building that vaguely resembled a dog house…and I vaguely recall some had stools that looked like hydrants.  You could dine inside at the counter or outside in a small porch area with tables.  Either one was cramped but inside, it was worse.

Outside, they often had waitresses and menus, and the selection was obviously limited by the size of their tiny kitchens.  Basically, it was burgers, dogs and a few sandwiches and salads, and I think some of them also served breakfast.  The food was not wonderful but I think it was a case of the cute decor making you expect something better than your basic hot dog/burger stand.

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