Have you noticed the number of new crab houses around Columbia? “What’s with that?”, you may ask. I sure did. The first one I saw was coming to Bower Parkway, called the Wild Crab. It’s since opened and it offers a seafood menu of traditional fried seafood, but its specialty is crab boils… bags of seafood boiled with a special seasoning (your choice – cajun, lemon pepper, garlic butter or “wild” which combines all three). And you choose your level of heat as in “spicy” – mild, medium, hot and extra hot.
What is served is a combination of whatever seafood you’ve ordered for your custom boil – blue crabs (seasonal), snow crab legs, shrimp (no head), shrimp (head on), crawfish, clams, baby clams, green mussels, black mussels, lobster tails, dungeness crab and raw or steamed oysters. Each boil also comes with corn on the cob and potatoes.
The reviews, as with most new places, have been mixed (3.9 out of 5 stars in Google reviews with 145 reviews and 3.5 out of 5 stars in Facebook based on 50 reviews). But the owners have attempted to answer most poor reviews, and I think the worst reviews are from back last month when they first opened. Most complaints were about having to wait a long time to be seated and for food… those type comments have abated. Here’s a link to their website.
There is a banner with the logo “The Juicy Crab” on the old Ryan’s Steak House off Bower Parkway near Sam’s Club. I tried to reach a human being at their corporate office in Duluth, GA, but got tossed from one extension to another, never speaking with anyone. Apparently, this restaurant has 8 open stores with many more listed as “coming soon”. According to their website, the owners have Asian ancestry, as do the owners of Wild Crab, above.
I was in Northeast Columbia at the Village at Sandhills and I saw another “crab” place going in where Arizona’s/Travinia’s used to be.
I have been hunting online to find some info on this place… like an opening date for you, but no luck. I’ll keep you posted. Let me know if you hear of anymore crab places opening!
Whoo Hoo! Reader Chris C. just told me about a new crab restaurant going in where Chili’s was in the Olive Garden shopping center on Harbison Blvd. I will investigate and let you know… thanks, Chris!
No sooner had I left the Village at Sandhills, traveling down Two Notch Road, when I noticed on O’Neil Court another crab house “coming soon”. It will be located in the old Applebee’s there. Called the Crafty Crab, this one is out of Melbourne, Fl.
Crafty Crab’s menu is very similar to that of Wild Crab, with cajun boils combining types of seafood with seasonings and varying degrees of heat.
The Crab Shak, with 3 area locations, has been gaining a following for some time – they serve their blue crabs in what I call “Outer Banks style”… on trays, with garlic butter. They also sell a boil, with sausage, corn, potatoes and egg. If you go to their website, you might notice no address for Crab Shak I (it has closed). They must be doing something right… over 18K follow them on Facebook.
Know another crab place about to open? Give me a shout and I’ll check ‘er out! firstname.lastname@example.org.