More restaurants are allowing your dog to accompany you on the patio as you dine out these days. But a Clearwater restaurant is taking dining out with your dog to a whole new level -- the dogs have their very own menu.
General Manager of The Besa Grill, Sam Haupt, says his customers inspired the idea.
"They were ordering $ 25 filet mignon for their dogs. And dogs aren't allowed to eat off the human plates. That's not allowed. We had to keep telling them no, and we didn't want to do that anymore," Haupt said.
So Haupt got with his chef, Paul Syms, and a veterinarian to come up with safe and tasty "Doggie Menu," featuring items such as "Backyard Hash," "Fido's Finest," and Ace's favorite, the "Mutt Loaf."
Ace's owner, Genesis Skellenger, says, "It's nice that we can have a place to go out with him."
Frequent diners Sheri Schmick, Rob Meale and their tiny Maltese, Chablis and Asti, are the menu's true inspiration. They even have a favorite table and their own nameplate.
"I think it's absolutely wonderful that there's someplace in the Clearwater area that's so pet friendly," Schmick said.
She also likes the fact that the menu is veterinarian-approved.
"All the ingredients are safe for dogs to eat, because there are so many things hidden in foods that dogs should not have."
Chef Paul showed us what goes into his Mutt Loaf: "A little egg. Fresh grade A egg. A little carrots. A little peas."
He mixes well, pours the mixture into a molded pan and bakes. All the ingredients are human grade.
"I'd serve this to anybody...I'd eat this myself...I'd serve it to my mother," he says.
We watched Chablis and Asti split their favorite: Fido's Finest, the filet tips, which at $6.90 are the most expensive item on the doggie menu. A first timer named ‘Kendall' cleaned his plate, leaving just the lettuce garnish.
Sam Haupt says the menu is a hit, and he thinks we're only going to see more dog-friendly dining.
"As long as the people are happy, the dogs are happy, I think we've got a winner," he says.
For more info: http://www.besagrill.com/
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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