Thursday, May 12, 2011

Awesome Dude Series: No. 6 - Naugles Restaurants (Bring Them Back!)

Naugles Run!!!!!!!!
This was the call of the wild when I was in High School! When starvage hit me, or anyone, it was grab anyone’s ride and get there! Naugles was also the most popular hangout for dudes after a Friday night football game, or any night you wanted to hang with friends and eat awesome Mexican food! Big food! It was also a cheap date, and a way to impress the ladies because they dug Naulges also! I had a friend actually get the okay from his Prom date to make Naugles their dinner option before the Prom! Dude, stories like that, the great taste and the memories are what make Naugles a member of my Awesome Dude Series!

My favorite was the Macho Combo Burrito, double wrapped, extra cheese! Dude, beans, meat, cheese, more cheese, lettuce, tomato, onions, Macho sauce and more cheese heaped high in two warm, monster flour tortillas (it took two to hold everything in)! Awesome!

Speaking of cheese, they also had the only Cheese Burrito known to man! And what about their famous Egg Burritos! I can remember sitting in the parking lot for 15 or 20 minutes until 11pm hit, just so I could score one or two of those bad boys!

Del Taco, who bought the Naugles franchise in 1986, has now become my favorite late night munchies option, and I know that Del Taco kept many of the Naugles favorites on their menu, but, dude, it’s just not the same!

For my readers who never had a Naugles in your area…total bummer! For all of you who missed out, and for you Dudes outside the US, here’s the scoop on a So Cal fast-food icon from the 1970s and 80s!

Naugles 101:
Naulges was a Southern California fast-food Mexican restaurant chain that existed from 1970 to 1988. It was founded by former Del Taco employee Dick Naugle. The first Naugles Restaurant Location  was at the southwest corner of Fourteenth St. and Brockton Ave. in Riverside, California (now a Del Taco). Dick's motto was "Prepare food fresh, Serve customer fast, Keep place clean!"

Harold Butler purchased Naugles in 1979 when the chain consisted of three restaurants. Butler built Naugles up to 225 restaurants by 1986, when he sold the chain to Collins Food International. Naugles merged with Del Taco in 1988. A few of the Naugles menu items, such as those with the "Macho" designation, found their way into the regular Del Taco menu. Also, the Naugles Taco Sandwich (Del Taco called it a "bun taco") can still be ordered from Del Taco even though it does not appear listed on the menu. A few independent franchises kept the Naugles name until 1995.

Email Del Taco and tell them to bring Naugles Restaurants back!! I contacted Del Taco to inquire about a Naugles return. I’ll have the results in another blog after they get back with me.

NAUGLES FANS: I know many of you dudes have Naugles stories that we all want to hear!  
Tell us your favorite Naugles story. What was your favorite Naugles Menu item?
Where was your Naugles hangout?

Also: Facebook is looking to remove or archive the Naugles Fan Page. Say NO to FB, keep the page alive! Naugles Run!!!

Keith Poletiek is the creator of Dude and Dude, a nationally produced comic strip distributed by United Feature Syndicate and seen daily on Follow Keith and Dude and Dude on Facebook.

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  1. If you want some real information concerning Naugles Restaurants--feel free to email me at

  2. Sorry, but I'd be interested in who is nauglebill@aol, or "the real naugle"? Please, Dutch, our family name for Dick, was my great uncle. So I would be very interested in your "real" information. Such as, what did Theo and Dutch have in common, or not!

  3. Forgot to add, I am ordained as a minister in the Church of Dudeism. Really!
    Surf Weddings starting at 2 macho's and a cup of coffee.

  4. Don't know how I didn't see this until now. A Naugles revival is being worked on, but separate from Del Taco. They squatted on it for too long and doing nothing with it.

  5. The Naugle Burger was my all time favorite burger, at least the version form the Barstow, California locations. I still crave it from time to time.

    I think I cried a little when they went out of business.

  6. Naugle Burgers are coming back....

  7. I was looking for the naugle recipe I think I tried to get one at Del Taco they wouldn't make that naugle burger for me but I appreciate what you done here I know it's been awhile but I think I would be a good fad again because that's a heck of a burger

  8. Naugles has returned: