Some might say the crossroads of Academy Boulevard and Agora Point are going to the dogs. But that’s in a good way. Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers, 7585 N. Academy Blvd., opened in early August. Now Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar, 7605 N. Academy Blvd., will open Oct. 16. Both eateries pay homage to man’s best friend in branding.

Lazy Dog replaced the former Romano’s Macaroni Grill and My Big Fat Greek Restaurant, with an impressive building inspired by the Rocky Mountain lifestyle. The Colorado Springs location is the newest for the California-based chain, which has more than 30 restaurants throughout California, Colorado, Illinois, Nevada and Texas.

Executive chef Jamie Harper has been with the company for about a year working at the two Denver locations. Harper, who’s from the New Orleans area, is a self-taught chef. He will execute the corporate menu using seasonal food with locally sourced ingredients. A couple of his favorite dishes on the fall offering are the shrimp and grits and the indigo cornbread, which is made with blue cornmeal.

And because of the owners’ love of dogs, the huge patio plays host to your furry companions with a menu for them, too. While you may feast on barbecue bison meatloaf, Spot can chow down on a grilled hamburger patty or grilled chicken ($4.95 each), both served with brown rice. If your pet has a vegan leaning, he can have a bowl of plain brown rice ($2.50). There are patio rules: No dogs on tables or laps. No begging, barking and biting. No eating or drinking from human dishes or glasses. (There are pet bowls.) And dogs must be on leashes. Details: 445-5851, lazydogrestaurants.com.

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The Airplane Restaurant makes the list

Mills, carriage houses and former gas stations were among USA Today’s Top 10 unique places transformed into restaurants. But few could top The Airplane Restaurant, also on the list, which has an eatery housed in a Boeing KC-97 tanker at 1665 N. Newport Road. Visit tinyurl.com/y2l88bor to see the list. Details: 570-7656, theairplanerestaurant.com.

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A double serving of La Carreta

La Carreta, 35 Iowa Ave., has a new second location at 6840 N. Academy Blvd. (formerly Lemongrass Bistro). La Carreta’s owners, mother Lorenza Galvan and daughters Blanca and Yamile Reyes, have owned the original La Carreta for five years.

“It’s been a Mexican food restaurant for 35 years,” Blanca said. “We took it over five years ago. We’ve added dishes from our Durango, Mexico, area, like gorditas with different stuffings.”

Galvan is the chef at both locations to assure food quality consistency. A liquor license is in the works at the new eatery. Hours at the new site are 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. daily. Details: 592-1391, tinyurl.com/yyhqzmtk.

Shuttered

The Village Inn at 5790 S. Carefree Circle closed Sept. 29, “Driven by many business factors,” according to a corporate news release. The restaurant opened in 2006.

Contact the writer: 636-0271.

contact the writer: 636-0271.

Food editor

Food writer for features life section and columnist for Go! Entertainment - Table Talk column

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