SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — A new restaurant in San Francisco is turning heads and wagging tails, promising an experience that some might call indulgent. Others see it as a dog-gone good time.
Dogue opened its doors on Valencia Street on Sept. 25, welcoming four-legged friends and their humans to dine in a café-like setting. The food caters mainly to canines, with items ranging from a $4.95 Dogguccino to a $70 three-course Chef’s Tasting Menu offered only on Sundays.
“It’s kind of a mixing of the dog food sector and the restaurant and hospitality sector,” explained Chef and Co-Founder, Rahmi Massarweh. “At its core, we are a fresh food company for dogs.”
Massarweh, who is trained in classical French cuisine, says he was inspired to start the business because of his own pets, which include four dogs.
“If you have responsibility over a family member, and you knew your choices affected how long that family member would live, wouldn’t you want to make the best choice possible?” he added.
To Massarweh, that means serving food that is biologically and species appropriate, and human-grade as well – ideas he says translated to the offerings at Dogue. Customers can pick up intricately designed pastries from the restaurant’s in-house “pawtisserie” or enjoy seasonal offerings made with organic, locally sourced ingredients.
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“It’s a whole dog experience,” said customer Katey Sullivan-Clerico, out shopping with her Rhodesian Ridgeback, Penny. “Our dog is part of our life, so we like to be able to take her to busy Valencia street but also have her participate, so this is the perfect place to do it.”
“I just think it’s fun, we were just seeing this little Maltese have tea by the window,” added husband Bill Clerico, “it’s nice to support local businesses in the area.”
Several customers arrived to celebrate their pet’s birthdays.
“They only live so long,” said Bo Hu of his two dogs, Mocha and Yoshi. “Might as well do something nice for them.”