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Dogged Pursuit

I waltzed into the White Horse at the end of Los Feliz Pub Crawl 2007, a jolly event that saw its members’ cordiality rise and intelligibility fall in direct correlation to aggregate alcohol consumption. We had covered about a half dozen bars, and I had the same number of whiskeys in me (not to mention a complicated rum drink to start the evening at Tiki Ti and the odd beer or three). Some folks had eaten during the stop at a forgotten Thai place on Hollywood Boulevard, but I was too busy at that point belting out “I Love Rock ’n’ Roll” on the karaoke machine. Needless to say, I was hungry at the White Horse, and I wasn’t in the mood for something complicated.

At the same moment that one of my pub-crawl brothers, an amiable Montanan, was handing me a Manhattan, my eyes fell upon a bowl of hot dogs. It was on the bar, and it was crammed full of franks, which were crammed into buns, ready to eat. I lurched toward this horn of plenty and, using a combination of grunts and gestures, communicated to the matronly bar frau that I fancied one of her delicacies. The woman, Vicky “Mama” Lelea (poignantly featured in our August 17-23 issue), palmed one of the dogs, threw it in the microwave for a few seconds, and then shoved it into my chest. With an ease that was surprising considering my inebriation, I applied ample lines of ketchup and mustard and downed the dog in a few bites. And . . . bliss.

Those morsels of processed meat calmed my alcohol-soaked stomach and sustained me through a discussion about fly fishing with my Montana friend.

This sounds like one of those experiences artificially enhanced by substances coursing through one’s veins, but let me assure you that, upon further review, the hot dogs stand. Free, quick and easy, they give the White Horse the air of a summer family reunion. Inhaling that dog was the perfect cap to a boozy evening, and it ranks as the best bar snack in Los Angeles.

1532 N. Western Ave., Los Feliz, (323) 462-8088. Open daily 6 p.m.-2 a.m.


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