Saturday, October 31, 2009

Lazy D's

Published in the Post Register in November, 2009.
SHELLEY – It’s Halloween afternoon, and in the banquet room at Lazy D’s Dracula is holding court on the literature of Bram Stoker.

In the kitchen, the former owner of a gun holster manufacturer is slicing beef while a nice lady who does community theater runs the fryer. It’s just another Saturday afternoon in downtown Shelley.

Dracula is Deneb Pulsipher. Dressed in full vampire regalia, he’s talking to a small group gathered to learn more about the high art of vampire novels. The former holster maker is Devon Kerbs, who moved from Phoenix to open Lazy D’s last year. Ronnie Jaynes is involved with live theater at the Virginia playhouse next door when she’s not preparing fresh-cut fries and hamburgers.

Kerbs learned his cooking craft on a dude ranch in Monument Valley and as co-owner of a barbecue place in Phoenix. Tired of the big city and with family in eastern Idaho, he bought a restaurant on Shelley’s main drag last year and opened Lazy D’s. Things were going along just fine until the health inspector told him he’d need to replace the floor and kitchen before opening.

He’s particularly proud of his Philly steak sandwich, but the big draw is his fresh-cut fries, including the four-pound “family fries” special. Kerbs has a secret, but he’s willing to share – he hand cuts and pre-fries the potatoes them every morning, chills, them,then gives them another quick bath in extra-hot oil before serving. Nothing served in the restaurant has ever been frozen, he says, and everything is cooked to order. He goes through 100 pounds of potatoes a day.

“I don’t even own a heat lamp,” he says.

Waitress Carrie Darrington tells us about the “woosh” – a concoction of whipping cream, Italian flavoring and soda that was invented by a customer. Lazy D’s has gone from serving a handful of flavored Italian sodas to 20 flavors.

It’s not just a burger joint – there are pastas and salads on the menu, too, featuring Kerbs’ own sauce recipes. But when in doubt, get the fries.

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