Boozing With Man’s BFF: Dog-Friendly Bars in Culver City

— by Caroline on Crack

Mya in a t-shirt by Holly Hite

Mya all dressed up and ready to hit up some dog-friendly bars.

Ever since I got my rescue pit bull Mya, I want to take her with me everywhere. I mean, wook at that wittle face! Unfortunately, most bars/restaurants usually won’t let me share a table with my new canine bff, something about it being a violation of a health code or something. Pfft! In any case, that hasn’t stopped me from trying to find dog-friendly bars within the 1.5-mile radius of where I live in Culver City/Palms where I can booze it up with Mya close by. Here’s what I found.

Akasha: Akasha has a couple of patios, one adjacent to the dining room and one off the café side. Dogs aren’t allowed on the patio but can be tied up outside it. Although I love stopping by here for a little breakfast and the happy hour, I’m squeamish about leaving Mya outside the fence since the sidewalk is kinda narrow so if other dogs walk by there could be a problem. In any case the trick is to score a seat off to the side away from the main thoroughfare. Recommended drink: One of the organic seasonal cocktails (the list on the site needs to be updated).

Bigfoot West: They have a patio enclosed by a fence with slats so you can tie your pooch to the outside of it and pet him/her through the spaces, if your hand can fit, that is. Unfortunately, this is a smoking patio so if you can’t stand the smell of cigarette smoke, you might want to skip this one since it seems like a lot of Bigfoot’s patrons like that bad habit. I hate smoke but the appeal of a great beer selection  and whiskey was hard to resist. Happy hour is daily from 5-9pm with $5 cocktails. Recommended drink: Boont Amber Ale on tap — smooth, flavorful, refreshing or a Manhattan. The happy hour drinks are too light (and sweet) for my taste so I stay away.

Father’s Office: Surprisingly the place that doesn’t allow photography, babies or ketchup lets you bring your dog but only if you tie him/her up outside of the patio. What I like about this is that Mya is dog-aggressive but since she’s tucked in behind plants and there’s a lot of room for people and their dogs to walk a wide birth around her she can’t get into trouble. Anyway, yay for enjoying really tasty craft beer alongside man’s best friend. Recommended drink: Can’t go wrong with any of their beers plus they also have a full bar so check out their Manhattan.

Gyenari: OK the food and cocktails here aren’t all that great but gotta love a patio with heated lamps and a place to tie up your doggy nearby. When I went they said I had to tie Mya outside of the fence but shhhh! they didn’t yell at me when she “snuck” onto the patio. Heh. Recommended drink: Stick to straight booze, neat or on the rocks. UPDATE 4/21/11: Gyenari is now closed but has been replaced with MoKo.

Le Saint Amour: The patio of this French brasserie actually has a place designated pour les chiens. It’s tucked in from the sidewalk so your dog doesn’t get stepped on by passers-by. Great place for enjoying wine and bites with friends. Keep in mind that they have delicious bone marrow here. However when I tried to give the leftover bone to Mya, she wouldn’t have it. She’s one picky eater. Recommended drink: Take your pick from beers like Allagash or Le Fin du Monde or from the wine list which features wine by the glass from $9-$15.

Native Foods: If you’re into organic beers (I’m not really), this is the place for you. They have a patio so you can enjoy your En ?Cha-Cha? Lada Bowl and Stone beer with Fido (on the other side of the fence of course).

Rush Street: Now I haven’t taken Mya to this Culver City barestaurant yet but they are right next door to Gyenari and also have a patio that you can tie your dog outside of. Same situation in terms of food and cocktails as Gyenari — meaning meh — but take your pick if you want to sit at a bustling patio or a quieter one. They have happy hour here but it’s only applicable to the second floor. Bew. Recommended drink: Draft beer or straight booze (their cocktails are too sweet for the likes of me).