Best Place to Bring Your Dog Houston 2005 - Barnaby's
The teacup toy poodles and rat-size Chihuahuas peer at each other from their owners' purses. Stately Dobermans and German Shepherds mingle with crack-addict-hyper Jack Russell terriers. Posh Weimaraners that could model for Wegman stare down their long noses at bandanna-clad, all-American golden retrievers. It's a veritable dog show on the porch of Barnaby's River Oaks location, which is fitting, considering the cafe's namesake is a dearly departed sheepdog. Well-heeled owners enjoy the savory burgers, health-conscious salads and hearty desserts such as apple pie á la mode while their pooches socialize and, on rare occasions, scuffle. (Manager Matt Matelske remembers one particular melee that involved 12 nippy dogs.) The staff ensures there's a healthy dose of treats like doggie ice cream and cookies on hand for the regulars. "We even have one who sits on a chair next to his owner at the table," says Matelske. Let's hope the pooch is a good tipper.