New neighborhood pub to open in West Dundee
Having grown up in a family of restaurateurs, Kris Veseli has always dreamed of opening his own neighborhood pub that would serve as a community gathering space.
He got his first job as a busboy when he was 16 and has since held various roles in establishments throughout northern Illinois, including a manager position at his father's now-closed restaurant in Shannon, in northwest Illinois.
Eighteen years later, Veseli will follow in his family's footsteps when he and his wife, Besa, open the The Lazy Dog Bar & Grill at 1959 Huntley Road. The neighborhood sports bar will be located in the Tartans Crossing shopping center.
"In my family, everybody's done it. I was just kind of born into it, I guess," said Veseli, a Lake in the Hills resident. "I've been looking for a place for a while, and then this opportunity came up, so I grabbed it."
Veseli is shooting for a late November opening date, he said, noting his five-year lease on the property begins Wednesday. The establishment will be open daily for dinner, and weekend hours will be extended to include brunch and lunch.
In addition to gourmet pub food and an assortment of drinks, the restaurant's business plan calls for a variety of entertainment options, including large TVs, a jukebox, darts, karaoke, live music and trivia games.
The concept is similar to that of the building's former occupant, The Chubby Bullfrog, which outgrew the space and recently relocated to a larger location in Spring Hill Mall, Village Manager Joe Cavallaro said. Aside from some minor interior remodeling, the floor plan and restaurant setup are not expected to change.
The village's liquor control commission earlier this month approved a liquor license for The Lazy Dog, which will also be considered for a video gambling license, Police Chief Andy Wieteska said. The Chubby Bullfrog also had video gambling machines.
"(Veseli's) marketing plans will attract a responsible local clientele and will offer a good dining option for the area and surrounding residential neighborhoods," Wieteska said.
Though he hasn't created a menu yet, Veseli said the restaurant is expected to serve bar favorites such as hamburgers, sandwiches, fish fry and wings. Happy hour and daily food specials will also be available.
The Lazy Dog, which will likely employ about 20 people, will open at 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 3 p.m. on Fridays, and 11 a.m. on weekends, according to Veseli's business plan.