Lazy Dog obtained its concept from Owner Chris Simms, who while vacationing in Jackson Hole, WY saw a dog lying by a fireplace and thought, “I wish everyone could enjoy life as much as that ‘lazy dog’ by the fire.” The original location opened in Huntington Beach, CA in 2003 and has expanded with 14 more, including one opening April 6 at Downtown Summerlin, the group’s first outside of California. The success of this fun concept is due to a menu that offers something for everyone with a wide range of cuisine, with Italian, Tex-Mex, Asian, pizza, burgers and All-American favorites like Campfire Pot Roast and BBQ Baby Back Ribs; a décor that cleverly ties in Simms’s family vacation memories with fireplace and generous use of wood and stone; and playful touches inspired by man’s best friend such as a 3-D paw print on the ceiling, dog photos and paintings, a dog-friendly patio and menu items for your pup such as brown rice and hamburger patty.

The diverse menu features several wok-fired dishes, such as the very unique calamari steak coated in a spicy Thai sauce atop brown or white rice, green and red bell peppers and peanuts. The nine brick oven pizzas are exemplified by the Black and Bleu Pizza, which should be renamed the bacon pizza due to the generous slathering of the hickory-smoked item that goes so well with anything, which is comingled with Cajun chicken, bleu cheese crumbles, caramelized onions, diced tomato and green onions. Those watching calories can choose from more than a dozen items from the Nutritious and Delicious section, all weighing in at less than 650 calories, such as Lemon-Caper Chicken Pasta 525 calories or Roasted Tomatillo Chicken Enchilada 620 calories. But if you want to splurge a bit, the Berry Rhubarb Crumble is a scrumptious mix of sweet and tart with strawberries, blueberries and rhubarb accompanied by vanilla ice cream and a cup of cream that comes in a cute mini-milk keg.

The menu is well-suited to pairing with beer, and Lazy Dog has you covered, with its own house beers and an expansive craft beer selection which during my visit included Old Rasputin Imperial Stout, Dogfish Head 90-Minute IPA and Piraat Triple Hop. Come during happy hour M-F from 3-6 and Sun-Thu from 9-midnight for deals on 20 appetizer selections, draft beer, house wine, well drinks, margaritas, martinis and house-made Sangria, all priced from $3-$7.

Lazy Dog is open daily for lunch and dinner. For more info and to view the complete menu, visit www.lazydogrestaurants.com.