The Lazy Pug Restaurant and Bar opened May 18th, 2011. Our dream was to create an authentic and comfortable American restaurant and dining experience in a growing city in China. After two years of research and many visits, we discovered that Chengdu had a real lack of options, and also a nice city to settle in. We hired a young chef, Steve Doty, just out of culinary school in Chicago and together created a constantly evolving menu with a strong focus on American barbeque.
The Lazy Pug Name
We named the restaurant “The Lazy Pug” because of our two quirky, loyal pug dogs. Good friends of ours, John and Anya, helped in naming the place. Our goal was to create a place that felt like home, and a place where everyone felt welcomed.
Although we do enjoy Chinese culture and food, we did miss being able to walk into to a bar and get a properly poured drink! Watching a Chinese bartender painfully measure out an ounce, placing two cubes in a glass with flat tonic and charge 40 RMB gave us some ideas. We do admit to having a heavy hand while pouring now! And the noodles doused in ketchup and called â€œBologneseâ€ did not help. Not to mention the awful â€œWesternâ€ music!
We met in Huzhou, Zhejiang Province at a small college teaching English in 2005. Since we had a light teaching schedule, we had plenty of time to travel and fell in love over “xiao long bao” oil dripping down our chins, hot pot and horrendous stomachaches in India. We spent the next 5 years traveling and financing our travels with random jobs, from “fake” Australian (apparently the accent was not needed) chefs at a 5 star hotel in Hangzhou to travel writers to translators.
Hopefully, Chengdu locals and expats will continue to warmly welcome us to the Chengdu dining scene. Thank you for all your support. And special thanks to our manager Teresa, our chef Steve, our prep cook Peng and Tina. We would not be here without them and their dedication to making the Pug successful!
Dana and Danny, The Lazy Pug Founders