Hooters for Gays: The Best Spots for Eats and Eye Candy

picture-116Now don’t get us wrong. Hooters is one of our favorite places to go for wings and oyster shooters and we’ve been to more ironic gay birthday parties at the boobs and beer joint than we care to count, but with news that Hooters is getting competition from joints like Twink Peaks and Bone Daddy’s, we have to wonder, “Where’s the gay Hooters?” Surely, there’s a market for fried chicken served by actual chicken or bison burgers served up by bears, right?

The closest thing to a gay-themed restaurant is Hamburger Mary’s, with locations in California, Colorado, Cedar Rapids, Chicago and Miami, but we have a sneaking suspicion that all the waiters are straight– I mean, why else would they turn down our repeated advances and requests for phone numbers, right? One day we’ll retire and open ‘Packages’, where dinner will be served by lads in wrestling singlets and jockstraps, but until that day, here are the best dives across the country that serve your hamburger with a side of hunk.

Los Angeles

Located right in West Hollywood, Mark’s serves up casual New American fare from Chef Wayne Elias (who also caters for nearby NBC Studios), but the real draw here is the waiters, and everyone knows it. Dinner is half-priced Sunday through Thursday, with Monday’s being the most popular night. The protein on display are all young actor-model types and the clientele spend a lot of their time trying to discretely crane their necks to watch the constant parade of buff guys. No need to hide it, fellows. That’s what they’re here for. 861 N. La Cienega Blvd. 310/ 652.5252

p5080067The Abbey
The coffee shop that swallowed West Hollywood, The Abbey is best known as WeHo’s ultimate stand & model martini spot, but technically, the place is a restaurant. You order from the counter, so there’s not much in the way of waitstaff, but the bartenders are universally attractive (and friendly) and the crowd is usually its own prix-fixe menu of hotness. 692 N Robertson Blvd. 310/ 289.8410

San Francisco

Cafe De La Presse
Is your dream of traveling to Paris on hold due to exchange rates and the Economic End Times? When it comes to fulfilling your dream of meeting a sexy French waiter, you need look no further than Nob Hills’ Cafe De La Presse. They’ve got the accents, the attitude and the reticence to bring you your seared foie gras on time that you’d find in Montparnasse, but you don’t need a passport to get there. 352 Grant Avenue. 415/ 398-2680


Rodizio Grill
If you enjoy the idea of being served meat on a stick by hot Latin men, you’ll love this Brazilian steakhouse located in Denver’s trendy LoDo district. The gimmick at the restaurant is that they’ll keep serving you as long as the stick they give you when you’re seated has the green end at the top. Once you’ve finished damaging your kidneys and getting your fill of man candy, turn the stick around so the red side faces up and you’ll be left to alone to digest the sensory overload.1801 Wynkoop St. 303/ 294.9277


Tango Sur
There’s something about steakhouses that seem to attract a hot waitstaff and Tango Sur, which serves up spicy Argentinian asado in Lakeside is a case in point. It’s a BYOB joint and the weekend’s tend to be overly crowded, but if you’re looking for a place to get a reasonably-priced steak served up by a piece of meat, there’s no better spot in Chi-town.3763 N Southport Avenue. 773/ 477.5466


Planet Sushi
We are sushi fanatics and could live off of the raw stuff everyday if we could. Miami’s Planet Sushi is a reasonably-priced alternative to Nobu and the dining room features flat-panel displays that allow you to watch the sushi chefs at work, which is cute, although– if you’re serious about sushi, you always sit at the bar so you can watch the chef and talk to him as he works. Planet Sushi is the one exception to our sushi-snob rule since bar service would mean giving up on the hot waiters, who inexplicably, are Italian. 860 Washington Ave. 786/ 276.7676

New York

How has Elmo survived where so many other New-American restaurants have failed? It all comes down to the waiters. The uniforms are perfectly tailored to show off their best assets and basically, like Hooters, they are the reason to go eat at Elmo. Honestly, we’ve always found the food at Elmo to be ho-hum, but with a great barstaff and all that man candy, you really won’t notice by the time your entree arrives. 156 7th Avenue. 212/ 337.8000

A fantastic and relatively affordable Thai spot on St. Mark’s, Klong is the spot we go to when we can’t think of where else we want to eat. The waiters are East Village hot and the pad thai and pork dumplings are some of the best we’ve ever had. The bathroom is a treat, too. You wash your hands in a little fountain and like the rest of the restaurant, its dark and subdued lighting radiates an exotic flair. 7 St. Marks Place. 212/ 505-9955

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  • Jennifer

    There’s a Hamburger Mary’s in Vancouver, too!

    Don’t forget Sovietsky Canookistansky!

  • Tyler

    Anyone know of an equivalent in Dallas?? I miss Mark’s Tuesday night-reduced menu. All the cheapest retail Queens in LA would descend – good food though.

  • Bill Perdue

    Rio in Las Vegas.

  • imayogi

    Gotta go to ROSIE’S in Ft. Lauderdale

  • my_kalm_organ

    There’s also a Mary’s in Orlando now.

    I always like the guys at Nookie’s Tree in Chicago. More of a breakfast/brunch/hangover food place, but always hot waiters.

  • fermat

    I’ve always wanted to see a restaurant called Baskets. Everything would be served in a basket with all the guys wearing tight short shorts.

  • GranDiva

    When Rodizio was still open in the Houston Galleria district, the guys weren’t much to look at (though there was this one boyish lesbian), but the food was more than enough to make up for it.

  • MarcTwain

    I like the name Baskets… I’ve always thought a gay version of Hooters should be called Hangers.

  • Rowen

    I really like Klong, mainly cause the food’s good, and affordable (if the wait to get in can be daunting, though). I’ve never noticed if the waiters are hot or not, though. I don’t really patron restaurants due to their excessive beauty in their waitstaff. Sure, if I get a hot waiter, that’s great, but I’d rather pay for good food, and good service from a competent Quasimodo, then mediocre food from a hot shirtless guy. That’s why I over pay for drinks at bars, thank you very much (and still realize that it’s usually the “ugly” bartender who makes better drinks).

  • jojo

    did a NYer actually write this? Elmo? Klong??

    eating on St Marks btwn 3rd and 2nd is disgusting.

  • Dan

    I’m really starting to think a whole lot of the ‘gay community’ has jumped the shark.

    Honestly, places to go where we can buy mediocre food and pricey drinks to stare at mildly homophobic straight guys? I’m getting tired of this type of stuff.

    Fuck this post, and fuck the desperate old (and I mean old!) queers who are gleefully prattling away on their keyboards for this drivel.

    It’s becoming painfully obvious that Queerty is getting as played out as Gawker, not to mention other shit sites like Towleroad, too. Between this and everyone making over the Alan Cummings dick post, I’m over it.

  • Tony

    i live close to the hamburger mary’s in chicago…those waiters are gay and trannies…trust me…it couldn’t get much gayer…it could stand to get hotter though.

  • illuman23

    I thought that the gay version of Hooters would be called “Chicken in a Basket”.

    I don’t think that any of the existing gay themed(?) restaurants go far enough to exploit their staff to really be equivalent to Hooters, but that’s a good thing.

  • Doug

    re: Tango Sur in Chicago — the name of the neighborhood is Lakeview, not Lakeside. (Wouldn’t want you to get lost on your way to finding hot meat — and tasty steak!) It’s technically West Lakeview, but Lakeview is the correct name of the neighborhood.

  • bryce

    HAHAHA its TWIN peaks not TWINK peaks!!!

  • Bill Perdue

    @Dan: And don’t come back.

  • Dawster

    I rather agreed with Dan… hmmm…

    is Andrew back yet?

    Okay, thank you Bryce… it’s Twin Peaks, not Twink Peaks, and for those straight men who have a sex lumberjack with boobs fetish – it’s the place to be. the food there… is awful. not just awful, but sickening. honestly, i have gotten some sort of stomach grumble every time i’ve gone (can’t say the same for Hooters, mind you).

    I get drug there all the time because i’m the only gay guy in an office of nothing but straight men… and of course, i’m the one that chats up the waitresses.

    we also have Bikini’s where the girls… oh never mind. the food there is better. Hooters still rules.

  • BobC562

    The Abbey has been taken over by straight men who discovered that straight women were hanging out there so they didn’t have the fend off the straight men. Now the straight guys freak out when somebody sidles up to them and suggests something involving rubber sheets and handcuffs… oh wait, that’s in Silverlake. For the more jeans and leather crowd, Faultline is far superior. And Paradise in Long Beach.

  • Ron

    I always thought it would be fun to name a place HOMO DEPOT.

  • Miami Man

    Correction: There is no Hamburger Mary in Miami. There WAS one in Fort Lauderdale – but the owners found the franchise fee’s exhorbitant – which they are…. having looked into it for a location in Miami, and changed the name to Rosie’s.

  • Dan

    Oh, Bill Perdue, don’t let the door hit you…

  • Rigato

    I agree with Dan. Isn’t it sickening enough that we have places like Hooters exploiting young women for their bodies? I don’t like to have my food served by strippers of either gender, thank you very much. This is just a list of places for old queens to go and oggle the staff. Mind you, they probably don’t appreciate it, even if they tell you otherwise. Like Hooters, they’re there as advertisements, and for the morons out there sex does sell.
    Japhy, I am severely disappointed in you.

  • Bill Perdue

    @Dan: You lied. You broke youe promise. You came back. How awful for us.

  • billeeboy

    Try almost any restaurant in Montreal – and not just in the Village! The men here are hot and friendly!

  • DNY

    @MarcTwain: No… Peckers.

  • Kevin

    Hamburger Mary’s in SF has been gone for YEARS!!! And Cafe de la Presse isn’t on Nob Hill. Japhy…you really need to come visit us sometime.

    The Castro has many restaurants that offer up plenty of male eye candy (both straight male and gay). Blue is one restaurant I can think of off the top of my head. However, most of the hot men in the city are bartenders.

  • Brian

    The boys at Mary’s in WeHo and in Long Beach are most definitely gay (at least most of them) and are sweet as hell (along with being very cute). And no one is exploiting them ala Hooters.
    Casito del Campo in Silverlake is my favorite gay/gay-friendly restaurant in the LA area. Really good and affordable Mexican in a relaxed atmosphere where you don’t have to think twice about holding hands.

    And an amen to BobC562 regarding the Faultline!

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