We stopped by the Winking Lizard / Lizardville in Copley, Ohio for a dinner and had one of our more memorable Akron-area meals. The restaurant was quick to seat us and let us know about the ample beer selection, before starting us off with their Loaded Lizard Nachos and Cheese ($7.29). The Loaded Nachos were large enough to sate the appetites of three or four guests, topped with two types of cheese, jalapenos, olives, tomatoes, and green peppers.
We were quite happy at how well-represented Ohio breweries were at Winking Lizard; we began our libations with a 12 Dogs of Christmas from Akron’s Thirsty Dog brewery. A sprinkling of cinnamon provided considerable depth to the beer, which was rich with hints of dark fruits, nutmeg, and malt elements.
The deconstructed wedge salad ($5.29) is an interesting dish, with ample portions of bacon, cheese, eggs, onions, croutons and seasoning. It provides the perfect counterpoint to a number of the rich and filling plates that the Winking Lizard offers.
Wings are a major focus of the Winkling Lizard to the degree that the restaurant offers a full array of sauces running from the traditional (garlic, honey mustard, teriyaki) to the mind-meltingly hot (911, Magma, and Fire in the Hole, a sauce that includes Trinidad scorpion peppers) and the esoteric (Thai, Spicy Sesame). Winking Lizard also offers a six-pack of dry rubs for those looking for a different wing experience.
The straight-forward Wild Western Burger ($9.49) is a highlight of the meal, with a cooked-to-order burger topped with thick slices of bacon and barbecue sauce. This entrée is balanced and versatile; one can ask that the kitchen swap out the BBQ for another of the restaurant’s wing sauces.
The Buffalo chicken wrap ($8.99) was one of our favorite plates of the night. The grilled chicken keeps things on the healthy side of things, while the buffalo sauce has bold flavors but does not veer too far into sweet or tangy. The inclusion of cheddar cheese into the wrap adds further complexity to the plate, while one is provided with an ample amount of blue cheese
The succulent St, Louis BBQ ribs ($16.49) fell off the bone and were only lightly sauced; the richness and smokiness of the meat shined on its own. Paired with any of Winking Lizard’s ample beer offerings (with well over 100 available for one to purchase), these ribs are the star of the night.
Oreo Oblivion ($5.29), an Oreo brownie is the perfect way to conclude the meal. This dessert blends together the sweeter elements of the Oreo cookie with a large scoop of ice cream and double dollops of whipped cream, Winking Lizard is able to balance the sweet with the savory side of things.
With a kids menu, a live lizard, and ample distractions, the Winking Lizard is a restaurant that can keep all segments of the family happy. For those above 21, Lizardville is a much more cultured space. A number of smaller-run beers are available on tap, while there is an outdoor cigar bar paired with pages of different whiskey, bourbon, and scotch options. For those finishing the night, Lizardville has one of the largest craft and foreign beer selections in northeast Ohio. A Night at the Winking Lizard / Lizardville – Copley, Ohio / 79 Springside Dr, Akron, OH 44333 / http://www.lizardville.net/ / https://www.facebook.com/Lizardville-Beer-Store-and-Whiskey-Bar-196391180383513/ / https://twitter.com/lizardville