WICKER PARK — Make way for long lines and plastic bibs: The Angry Crab, a hugely popular West Rogers Park BYOB seafood joint, will open its second location in Wicker Park.
Sandwiched between BIG & Little's and The Ark, a local nonprofit thrift store, the storefront at 1308 N. Milwaukee Ave. has been rented by The Angry Crab.
Angry Crab co-owner David Nguyen confirmed on Wednesday that the restaurant is expanding to Wicker Park. He owns the restaurant with his brothers, Irvin and Mark Nguyen.
The Nguyen brothers like "the diversity of the neighborhood ... the art, the feel of it," David said, adding that the strip of Milwaukee near Ashland is "an up and coming" area.
Future home of The Angry Crab, 1308 N. Milwaukee Ave. [DNAinfo/Alisa Hauser]
Since opening in February 2015 at 5665 N. Lincoln Ave., The Angry Crab has attracted long lines and kudos from fans. David said he hopes a second location will cut on the wait for their supporters.
"Leave your fancy clothes at home and be prepared to get messy and eat with your hands. This place is fun and the food is delicious," one Yelp.com member posted.
The Angry Crab serves Louisiana-style seafood with a northern California influence — just the type food the Nguyen brothers grew up eating in California, David previously said. They might add more menu items at their Wicker Park location since it's larger, David said, but he couldn't provide more details.
The owner, who bought the buildings at 1308 - 1310 N. Milwaukee Ave. in 2014, declined to comment. Prior to remodeling the properties, the storefronts were home to a clothing shop operated by The Ark and Sunny Nails.
Neighbors heralded the news of Angry Crab's arrival.
Ina Winer, a sales clerk at The Ark, said she expects having a restaurant next door will bring more foot traffic to the resale shop.
Karen Butler, a sales representative at Affordable Furniture & Carpet, 1314 N. Milwaukee Ave., said that she spent her most recent birthday at the Angry Crab.
"I love seafood. I have only been there once, the wait was crazy but the food was delicious. I'm going to love having it so close," Butler said.
Customers choose their seasoning and sauce, with spiciness ranging from the mild "Calm Cubs" to the "HELLA SPICY Dangerous Hawks." There are also sides and appetizers like seasoned French fries and corn.
Fans routinely line up outside the restaurant before it opens so they can get in immediately, and the West Ridge location attracts lines that stretch down the block.
For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: