“Hot Dog” Bill Parrish was a hamburger entrepreneur, member of the prestigious Bohemian Club, and Big Band trumpeter for the likes of Duke Ellington, Jimmy Dorsey, and Lionel Hampton. In addition, he was a pioneer in the mobile food industry. In the early 1950’s, Bill moved his mobile food trailer to the grass surrounding Lake Merced in order to serve the local golfers, fisherman, and joggers.
Like many great ideas, the Burger Dog was borne as a matter of function and necessity. The limited grill space made a hot dog shaped burger easier to fit on the grill, simplified the stocking of inventory, and decreased cooking times. The thinly shaped burger had the added benefit of being easier to handle and consume for the active people of the Lake Merced area.
Burgers simply taste better this way! When just starting out, it was necessary for Bill to shape each burger by hand when ordered. However, after several decades a mold was invented to increase the production of Burger Dogs in order to meet the demand of our loyal members.
Our company hand-crafts each burger out of a premium grind of ground chuck and sirloin. The Burger Dog is cooked to order and topped with condiments of your choice. The buns are freshly baked and toasted until crunchy on the outside, but chewy in the middle. The key to our success has always been specification, attention to detail, and the use of quality ingredients.
"Hot Dog" Bill’s Burger Dogs were so delicious and convenient that The Olympic Club golf members frequently traversed across the flume to Lake Merced in order to satiate their hunger. Due to the absence of concessions on the course, the burger-obsessed golfers became the cause of numerous complaints of slow play. In 1950, The Olympic Club invited Hot Dog Bills to take up a permanent location on the 10th tee of the storied Lake Course. Hot Dog Bills became an instant success with the members, whom now had the added benefit of being serenaded by a trumpeted “Happy Birthday” each time they played down the fairway. The company's establishment of a new home at the Olympic Club coincided with one of the greatest upsets in golf history, the 1955 US Open, in which the unknown Jack Fleck beat the nine time major champion Ben Hogan.
In preparation for the 1987 U.S. Open, The Olympic Club built permanent stands on both the driving range and the Lake Course. The Ocean Course concession stand followed in 1999. Second generation owner, Candy Parrish, describes the allure simply, “It’s just a great, quality burger. We serve mostly ground chuck with a little sirloin, and we cook them very fast to order.” In fact, Candy fell in love and married her local butcher, Jack, and their two sons now manage the family business.