If you’ve recently been to the corner of 19th and Agate for a scoop of Prince Pückler’s or an evening at Beppe and Gianni’s, you may have noticed the brick-oven Hey Neighbor! Pizza House just a few doors down. And if you’ve been really lucky, you may have caught a glimpse of their two corgi mascots, Roux and Phife.
“We kind of owe it to them that we found this place,” Calen Willis says. Willis, Dug Beaird and Adie Coy co-own the restaurant, which opened in September 2018.
It’s only fitting that the dog on the logo is modeled after five-year-old male, Phife. He and his older sister, Roux, make an appearance at their business once every couple of weeks. It’s important that they socialize with the customers and taste the pizza on occasion. Their favorite is pepperoni.
“This whole patio is really dog-friendly and that’s a focus we wanted from the get-go,” Calen says. He says that diners are always happy and excited to see the dogs, and like to pet them during their meal. Roux and Phife do not go in the kitchen, and tables are immediately sanitized if they decide to hop up and say hi to the diners.
Right now, Hey Neighbor has only one location. Willis says that if they open another restaurant, it would have to be in the right space, as they are very neighborhood-focused.
“Even throughout all the COVID stuff, we wouldn’t be doing half as good as we normally would if it weren’t for the community supporting us,” Calen says.