An up-and-coming fast-casual chain lets customers craft the ultimate hot dog

Dog HausDog Haus websiteChilli, Fritos, onions and shredded cheddar completes this hot dog.

A restaurant chain that sells hot dogs is gaining popularity. 

Dog Haus is a craft hot dog restaurant that got its start in Pasadena, California in 2012.

The three founders, Hagop Giragossian, Quasim Riaz and André Vener, met 19 years ago.

Vener was working at an outdoor concert in southern California when Giragossian and Riaz pulled up to the venue in their gourmet food truck.

About 16 years later, the friends opened their first craft hot dog shop in the bohemian town of Pasadena.

In its five year existence, the chain has expanded to 11 locations — three company-owned and nine franchises located in California, Arizona, and Colorado.

Dog Haus partner André Vener describes the restaurant concept as a “grown-up version of the classic hot dog”.

While individualization and customisation is key to most fast-casual restaurants, Dog Haus is no exception.

The restaurant offers select menu items to choose from, as well as a build-your-own-dog option. Haus Dogs start at $US5.99 before add-ons, and Haus sausages and burgers start at $US6.99 before additional toppings. Customers can choose from all-beef skinless dogs, sausages, and black Angus beef, along with vegetarian options.

Some of the menu items have funky names such as “another night in Bangkok” “bad mutha clucka” or “pig Lebowski.”

Dog HausDog Haus websiteThe Grand Slam hot dog complete with smoked bacon, fried egg, tater tots, maple syrup sriracha. Breakfast for dinner?

The build-your-own-dog option allows customers to get creative by adding an unlimited amount of toppings.

Another aspect that makes these hot dogs and burgers unique is that they are on King’s Hawaiian rolls.

Vener explained to Business Insider that after experimenting with different buns, the King’s Hawaiian rolls were chosen because they provide the perfect texture to hold the dog and add a sweet and savoury taste.

Being able to stand out among a sea of other restaurants is key to its presence.

“If you lined up a bunch of hot dogs from different restaurants, you would be able to pick out our hot dogs thanks to the unique buns,” Vener told Business Insider.

In addition to hot dogs and burgers, the restaurant also offers other items such as cheese-covered tater tots, jumbo onion rings, and shakes, plus a beer and wine menu. 

Dog HausDog HausDog Haus: The Absolute Wurst

For future growth, Dog Haus plans on opening 125 locations in eight states and Washington D.C. — 25 of which are franchises. Since the first franchised restaurant opened in June 2014, the concept has more than tripled in size.

Vener explained that they are selective with choosing people who want to open a Dog Haus franchise.

“We want people who will match our core values and preserve our quality as a unique chain,” Vener said.

And unique it is.

Check out some of the crazy topping combinations people get creative with at Dog Haus. 

Dare to put a fried egg on your hot dog?


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