Dat Dog, an iconic New Orleans restaurant chain has selected Greenleaf Lawson Architects to lead the development of their first ever prototypical restaurant design, as the company prepares for expansion.
Paul G. Tuennerman, the CEO, assumed the helm at Dat Dog in February of 2018 and has been working to position the company for expansion. One aspect of this initiative is the development of a prototypical restaurant design which will allow the regional chain to scale for growth. Dat Dog is currently evaluating opportunities for expansion throughout Louisiana, the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and the Southeastern United States.
"It did not take long after meeting Justin (Greenleaf), Michelle (Lawson) and their team to realize that our cultures, and philosophical approach to business and the design-build process, were very similar. While we have at our disposal numerous, well-qualified architects in the greater New Orleans area, I could not imagine moving forward with anyone else on this project," says Paul G. Tuennerman, CEO for Dat Dog. Before joining Dat Dog, Paul was the Senior Vice-President for Business Development, for Plano, Texas-based Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers, from 2008 through 2016, as the company prepared for hyper-growth, including international expansion.
“New Orleans is colorful, unique and inspiring. It was the perfect foundation for designing the future of Dat Dog’s physical environment. What people may not realize is that Dat Dog also has European influences making it quite the pairing with New Orleans flare. After spending numerous hours listening to Dat Dog’s, vision and passion for this concept, we knew immediately this would be a design task like no other; but one we truly wanted to take on. In order to exceed their expectations, we leaned on the guidance of Paul Tuennerman, Dat Dog’s operations team and used 3-dimensional digital imagery to consistently communicate the design intent. Together we believe that a proper design solution was created by our team, Greenleaf Lawson Architects that continues to emit the personality of Dat Dog and its organizational culture, one that we admire and align well with. It’s fresh and fun. It’s clever. This project certainly put a smile on our face too,” says Michelle Lawson, Principal for Greenleaf Lawson.
Dat Dog expects to open at least one new location, using the new design, before the end of 2019.